Monday 5 November 2012

Ferney by James Long

Gally and her husband Mike have moved to a small village in Somerset to make a new start. Gally feels strangely drawn to a run-down old farmhouse so they buy this and camp out in a caravan until the house is restored to its former condition. Soon after moving, they meet Ferney, an old man who Gally finds herself as drawn to as she is to the house.

Ferney has in fact lived many incarnations in this area and believes that Gally has accompanied him through the ages. He has vivid memories of how the place used to be and a strong sense of the losses due to so called progress.

He stretched out an arm and pointed down the hill. "The wood you painted, down there, stretching across the first part of the plain, that was nibbled away. They started eating at it about, oh shall we say 1500? A hundred years it took. It went for fuel, for ships, for building....... After that King James gave the rest to his benighted friends to hack down for their benighted purses".

Mike is a historian, but his book learned understanding is never as vivid or as clear as Ferney's lived understanding.

It's a vivid, moving story that makes the reader think about reincarnation and the nature of relationships as well as about how history affects the cultural and environmental aspects of our lives and the places we live in. The downside is that Ferney and Gally aren't exactly likeable and don't seem to care about the effect their obsessional love has on other people.

 The Lives She Left Behind, the sequel to Ferney has just been published and promises to be another excellent read! 

Ferney by James Long published by Quercus 

I was delighted to win this book in a competition over on Cornflower Books

As ever, text in red contains hyperlinks that take you to other pages where you can find out more.


Ms Sparrow said...

It seems like even as time marches on, we keep making the same mistakes over and over.

The Weaver of Grass said...

This is the second book I have added to my list - and I have only read the first two blogs this evening on my side bar!

Tommaso Gervasutti said...

A moving and fascinating story indeed.

By the way I signal to you his latest poem posted by David King, really great.

Jeanne Henriques said...

This is my kind of book! Thanks so much for stopping by today...I am delighted to have found your blog. :)

bunnits said...

Must look for this one. Thanks.

eileeninmd said...

Sounds like an interesting book, thanks for the review!