(1930–2003), British author, born in Middlesex and educated at University College, London. Furlong was a feminist Anglican prominent in campaigning for the ordination of women. Her writings include three historical fantasy novels for children. Wise Child (1987), set in 7th- century Scotland, depicts the eponymous girl's fostering and mentoring by the wise woman Juniper, whom the Christian priest Fillan persecutes as a witch. Fillan's repression is contrasted with Juniper's tolerance and closeness to nature, as Wise Child attempts to be both a Christian and a “doran” (wise person). Wise Child's “prequel,” A Year and a Day (1990; retitled Juniper, 1992) tells in turn of Juniper's training and further explores women's spirituality and issues of gender and power. Furlong's last children's novel, Robin's Country (1994), is a Robin Hood retelling, in which a boy without speech joins the outlaw community.
From The Oxford Encyclopedia of Children's Literature in Oxford Reference.