Ok, rant mode ON
Like I said in the previous message Lion of the North is my favourite tribunal book ever. The only other tribunal books that caught my imagination to the same level were Heirs to Merlin and Guardians of the Forests. Heirs to Merlin was important to me as a show of what a regular vanilla tribunal should look like and specially regarding the non mythic elements. In a sense it is the medieval handbook of 4th-5th edition before 5th cranked superhero and D&D powers to the sky. Guardians of the forest had character, but maybe because it was the first (I think) tribunal of 5th edition did not have the Sword of Joram society feeling to it that later books have. That is my pet peeve of 5th edition, sorry about that.
Now, Lion. Lion is a 3rd edition book and it shows. These books were way more sparse in hermetic DETAIL than later editions, that nailed a lot more chamber pots. Iberia has 4 covenants and while it says the tribunal has something like 13 of them, IIRC. Same for Rome, that only shows the Magna Houses. HOWEVER (and this is the key for me here), Lion and the other 3rd edition tribunal books it has A LOT OF MAGICAL FEEL & CHARACTER to it. You can tell how hermetic (or mostly exmisc society in Lion's case) works and interacts with its environment by how the book is written. You do not need detail. I have more problems telling you how some of the other nailed tribunals work than Loch Leglean.
I really got that feel to be the boon of the book. this and the background of the war against Davanalleus, that is just great. We have played the war twice. The first time using regular hermetic magic (3rd-4th edition) and later in 5th edition using mostly nonhermetic traditions, including Pralix (spirit master) and Ignes Festi (why the name change I ask?) that was played using the rules of Hyperborean Hymnists, since elementalists did not cut for us (this is also something we have discussed: we cannot nail Guernicus or Flambeau using pre-hermetic systems, and that bothers my Ars troupe). Both times the minisaga (under 20 sessions) has been a blast. For me the major concern is something that most people would find irrelevant: the fact that the hermetic and mundane history timelines story chapters and timelines are not integrated in a single chapter. I prefer when they are mixed.
Regarding the things that bother you, I have nothing to say. I mostly agree with the criticisms, but do not bother me as much as you, I guess. Each one of us have a list of things that irk us and you listed yours. I will try to reply but I am sure that it is unlikely that I will change your mind since we simply demand different things from the books
NO MAP. Correct. I have nothing to say here. All power to you. Still the concrete locations are so sparse that it is not difficult to locate them yourself in a real map.
3 COVENANTS. As said it is a feature. It irked me somewhat as well, but given the profusion of potential covenants to fill the gaps in redcap.org I came over it in the year 2000 or so. Yes, redcap was already around and I milked it like a madman I see the 3 covenants of the book as templates of how highland, lowland isolationist and quarrelsome covenants are in Scotland. Highland covenants are not castles on a hill, but clan based, for example. usually quite loose in how they act as covenants. I agree that have some more (like 6) and adding an English covenant or 2 (we have done that when playing in the area; in fact we had 4 or 5) was something I would have liked, but it is an old book and it was the design style at the time. If you want a 5th edition work around for that, take the irish tribunal and dump it in Scotland. You will need to change very few things to make it work as written in the contested isle. Change the diverse local kings for clan chiefs and be done with it.
MYTHIC LOCALES. true. Again, a thing of the times. As we say in spanish do not ask the elm tree to make apples.
Layout. Again, true. I use them to put post-its with ideas, but it is a bad design decision.
Norman covenant. Answered above. Use Contested isle for this.
CUN CLACH. As you pointed out Cun Clach is too powerful. I hated Caitlin from moment zero. Looks like the grandmother of Merlin like you do. However, it is easy to change We made them too centered in having fun and being the centre of a sidhe court to interact much with outsiders, so a winter covenant that is EXTREMELY powerful but does not care about the outside world without changing a coma of its description. Winter does not mean decrepit, it means hermetically irrelevant.
I also point out that I think it was the first book to introduce non hermetic traditions tied to a locale. And I just LOVED gruagachan. they were my base for non hermetic opponents of the Order for a long time before 5th edition introduced a plethora of other traditions.
Artwork! This is just the best book of the line regarding artwork I think. Inspiring stuff all around
So to end the rant I think the book could be improved, but I would hate it being treated like a 5th edition tribunal book that nails everything down, since it would lose the "wow" and awe feeling I get from it, I am sure of it. More covenants and some mythic locations would be extremely appreciated, but a change to nailing chamber pots? No thanks.