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Review ó eBook, PDF or Kindle ePUB Ò Alan Garner

The Weirdstone of Brisingamen

Review Ë The Weirdstone of Brisingamen ´ eBook, PDF or Kindle ePUB Alan Garner Ò 7 Summary E closing in determined to possess and destroy its special power Colin and Susan realise at last that they are the key to the Weirdstone's return But how can two children defeat the Morrigan and her deadly broo. Whenever I m asked to name my favourite children s author the answer has to be Alan Garner I ve recently reread all his children s books and read some of his adult books for the first time but of all of them my favourite remains the first book of his I read as a child the Weirdstone of BrisingamenIn the introduction to the fiftieth anniversary edition of The Weirdstone of Brisingamen published in 2010 Philip Pullman said of Garner that Garner is indisputably the great originator the most important British writer of fantasy since Tolkien and in many respects better than Tolkien because deeper and truthful I couldn t agree The Weirdstone of Brisingamen was his first book and according to both Garner himself and literary critics not his best one his prose style dialogue and characterisation all improved markedly in later books However its combination of narrative power a deep numinous sense of place the book is set in Alderley Edge in Cheshire home of Garner s family for centuries and its use of northern European folkloric and mythological sources made an extraordinarily powerful impression on me when I first read the book aged seven one that has stayed with me ever since I reread the book every few years and will continue to do so into my dotage in all likelihoodThe story which leads up to a climax involving an epic battle between the supernatural forces of good and evil is centred around two children brother and sister Colin and Susan who are staying with family friends in a farmhouse near to Alderley Edge whilst their parents are away abroad children s adventure books always work so much better when the parents are safely out of the picture and unable to interfere don t theyThe story is a kind of uest but in reverse because the children are seeking not to find something but to return it to its rightful owner the Weirdstone of the titlean ancient teardrop shaped jewel which contains the powerful white magic necessary to assist in the final defeat of the evil spirit Nastrond The Weirdstone has been lost for over a century but rightly belongs with Cadellin the wizard who guards the force of sleeping warriors buried under Alderley Edge in the dwarf caves of Fundinelve We soon find out that Susan unknowingly has the Weirdstone in her possession incorporated into a bracelet passed down through her family and the reverse uest is the children s journey to return the Weirdstone to Cadellin in the face of vicious opposition from the forces of evil most frighteningly embodied in the witches of the morthbrood led by the truly terrifying shape shifter Selina PlaceThis fictional journey takes place across and under the very real landscape of Cheshire incorporating well known landmarks such as Alderley Edge itself a sandstone escarpment The Wizard s WellClulow Cross etc and other landscape features such as abandoned mines and uarries The mythic element is eclectic here as in many of his later books Garner draws on elements of various mythological traditions of northern Europe that have left their traces in the British Isles Old Norse Celtic and Old English and combines them in a way that is particularly resonant and peculiarly his ownThis is a book which can be enjoyed by children of seven and above and could be read to the class or read independently It could also be used for cross curricular purposes for Geography given the interesting landscape of its real location and for History given its mythic elements drawing on the cultures of various previous inhabitants of the British Isles in earlier historical eras Celts Vikings and Anglo Saxons

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Review Ë The Weirdstone of Brisingamen ´ eBook, PDF or Kindle ePUB Alan Garner Ò 7 Summary When Colin and Susan are pursued by eerie creatures across Alderley Edge they are saved by the Wizard He takes them into the caves of Fundindelve where he watches over the enchanted sleep of one hundred and for. This is a book of my childhood I remember the first few chapters of it being read to me during the library sessions at school when I was seven and it was the first fantasy book I ever checked out all by myself I had to know what happenedUnlike a lot of fantasy books for children I remember being uite genuinely frightened during parts of this which was thrilling I still re read this occasionally and each time am transported back to that sense of wonder and adventure I felt when I was a very young girl A testament to the skill of Alan Garner I think

Review ó eBook, PDF or Kindle ePUB Ò Alan Garner

Review Ë The Weirdstone of Brisingamen ´ eBook, PDF or Kindle ePUB Alan Garner Ò 7 Summary Ty knights But the heart of the magic that binds them Firefrost also known as the Weirdstone of Brisingamen has been lost The Wizard has been searching for the stone for than 100 years but the forces of evil ar. Purportedly written for children but with a strong appeal for adults as well Alan Garner s first novel The Weirdstone of Brisingamen is a swashbuckling heroic fantasy set in the present day and one that conflates elements of Welsh Nordic and English mythology into one very effective brew Though now deemed a classic of sorts I probably would never have heard of this work had it not been for Scottish author Muriel Gray s article about it in the excellent overview volume Horror Another 100 Best Books In her article Gray describes the book with expressions such as truly gripping beautifully crafted and a young person s introduction to horror And now that I have finally read the book I can heartily concurIn the novel we meet a brother and sister named Colin and Susan their last name is never given nor are their ages who when we first encounter them are going to stay with their mother s old nurse and her husband Bess and Gowther Mossock while the kids parents are abroad for six months The Mossocks farm in real life Alderley in Cheshire seems initially idyllic but trouble soon looms As it turns out the heirloom pendant that Susan wears on her wrist is nothing less than the titular Weirdstone essential for protecting the sleeping warriors in underground Fundindelve from the depredations of Nastrond the Spirit of Darkness Delivering the Weirdstone safely to the good wizard Cadellin Silverbrow however aided by Gowther and by two Viking like dwarves Fenodyree and Durathror embroils the two children in the adventure of their young livesAt this point you may be wondering why a seemingly adolescent fantasy novel was chosen for inclusion in a listing of some of the best adult horror books but trust me those horror elements are present in abundance Besides featuring witches warlocks the svart alfar goblins the mara a sort of monstrous 20 foot high walking female statue of green stone the Fenris wolf giant eyeless dogs malevolent scarecrow creatures et al the book also throws in horrors of a subtle variety All the birds in the county seem to be in league with the forces of evil and are used as both aerial spies in the story and as beaked and taloned fighters indeed the scene in which Durathror goes up against a swarm of these birds cannot help but bring to mind the famed Hitchcock film of three years later No one in Garner s book is to be trusted either even a neighbor who one has known for decades may turn out to be a warlock or abettor of evil An aura of real paranoia is thus engendered by the author similar almost to the one encountered in the 1956 film Invasion of the Body Snatchers Garner s story also features some extended bravura set pieces including the children s exploration of sorceress Selina Place s abode the 50 page seuence in which they explore the underground caverns of Cheshire a seuence that will most assuredly prove disagreeable to anyone who suffers from claustrophobia and the lengthy section in which our five heroes flee across a wintry countryside from all the forces of evil ranged against them Garner writes very well simply but movingly although his powers of description regarding geography and terrain can be a bit shaky young and old readers might have to exercise their gift of imagination fully to envision some of these sections not that there s anything wrong with that Though supposedly a children s book I wonder how many ADULTS out there will be familiar with such words as shippon withy mithered and nesh not to mention the heaps of mythical references and names that Garner casually dishes out Having said that I will admit that the book offers some nice words of wisdom to the youngsters such as when Fenodyree tells the children The deed is nothing It is the thought that breeds fear and we achieve little by lingering or when Gowther shows us all the perfect way to apologize Ay I spoke out of turn You re reet and I m wrong I m sorry Another plus for this chilling fantasy novel the inclusion of a pair of charming maps drawn by one Charles Green that greatly aid in visualizing the odyssey that the children and their allies make Bottom line The Weirdstone of Brisingamen should NOT be ignored by adult readers especially if they happen to be horror buffs The book was followed by a direct seuel 1963 s The Moon of Gomrath and I cannot imagine any reader of the first volume not curious to find out what happens next to Colin and Susan

  • Hardcover
  • 224
  • The Weirdstone of Brisingamen
  • Alan Garner
  • English
  • 23 August 2018
  • 9780001831049