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Corrag Hardcover – 4 Mar 2010


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Product details

  • Hardcover: 368 pages
  • Publisher: Fourth Estate (4 Mar 2010)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0007321597
  • ISBN-13: 978-0007321599
  • Product Dimensions: 22.1 x 3.3 x 14.2 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (63 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 248,129 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

Susan Fletcher was born in 1979 in Birmingham. She is the author of the bestselling 'Eve Green' winner of the Whitbread First Novel Award, 'Oystercatchers' and 'Witch Light'.

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Review

Praise for Oystercatchers:

'Fletcher has a remarkable talent with words…her approach to the world is side-on, not direct; she is attuned to the ambiguities, the spaces, the gaps left in language, the things that are not spoken; she imbues inanimate objects with a life of their own, a history and a personality and a voice. Fletcher is the woman writer par excellence: intelligent, perceptive, intuitive…British readers looking for a local equivalent to Alice Munro won't have to look much further…She is a highly talented writer and fully deserves the acclaim she has received - and the popularity that goes with it.' The Scotsman

'Oystercatchers is a stunning novel…both emotionally discomfiting and romantic; at times puzzling, it is profound, beautiful and redemptive. Oystercatchers is the work of a seriously talented young author in possession of one of the most poetic and original voices working now.' Joanna Briscoe, Guardian

'Her prose is extraordinarily lyrical: haunted, dreamlike and precise, reminiscent at times of Sylvia Plath…Fletcher's words are undeniably beautiful and her themes are profound…a haunting novel.' Sunday Times

About the Author

Susan Fletcher was born in 1979 in Birmingham. She is the author of the bestselling Eve Green and Oystercatchers.


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Customer Reviews

4.3 out of 5 stars

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

6 of 6 people found the following review helpful By Annabel Gaskell VINE VOICE on 22 Mar 2010
Format: Hardcover
"I was always for places. I was made for the places where people did not go - like forests, or the soft marshy ground where feet sank down and to walk there made a suck suck sound. Me as a child was often in bogs. I watched frogs, or listened to how rushes were in breezes and I like that - how they sounded. Which is how I knew what I was."

So speaks Corrag; a young woman in prison accused of witchcraft and aiding members of the MacDonald clan to escape the massacre at Glencoe in 1692. In shackles and awaiting her death at the stake, she tells her story to a visitor to her cell. How she grew up in Northumberland and had to flee into Scotland when her mother was accused of being a witch ...

"She shook her head. `You are going alone. You are leaving me now, and you must not come back. Be careful. Be brave. Never be sorry for what you are, Corrag - but do not love people. Love is too sore and makes life hard to bear ...'
I nodded. I heard her, and knew.
She fastened her cloak on me. She smoothed my hair, put up the cloak's hood.
`Be good to every living thing,' she whispered.
`Listen to the voice in you.
I will never be far away from you. And I will see you again - one day.'"

Corrag is Susan Fletcher's third novel, which ultimately tells the story of the mass murder of the Jacobite MacDonald clan by soldiers under orders from King William. Corrag herself was probably real, but her visitor, Charles Leslie certainly was. He was a Stuart supporter and came from Ireland to investigate the massacre. He urges Corrag to tell what happened, but first she wants to tell him how a Sassenach girl came to live in the Highlands.
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17 of 19 people found the following review helpful By possessed.by.a.lemon TOP 1000 REVIEWERVINE VOICE on 16 April 2010
Format: Hardcover Vine Customer Review of Free Product ( What's this? )
I find this review troublesome and difficult to write. You see, I've just finished this book in under three days, which is Usain Bolt speed for me and incredibly rare. It was yesterday that I reached the final page, and in some ways I feel depressed writing about it today. Depressed that I'm stuck in front of a PC in a house when I want to be back in the Scottish Highlands that the book took me to all too briefly for my liking.

I spent my first and most cherished childhood holiday in a caravan at the parks of Appin. I remember the day my family drove to Glencoe. I was mesmerised by the mountains and the sunlight on them, the way they appeared to open up and welcome me. The opening paragraph (save for Charles Leslie's first 'prologue'-esque letter to his wife) of Corrag had the exact same effect on me, and I was (forgive me Father, for I'm about to pun unintentionally) bewitched by every page after.

I've read other reviews, both from fellow Amazonians and from professional critics, that accuse the book of dragging on, of being a hard slog, and claiming that Fletcher could have done with an editor. And while I can take these concerns on board, it's all in the eye of the beholder. Sure, Corrag does take more time getting to the point than your average politician - if you consider the point to be the Glencoe Massacre, that is. But the title is not 'The Glencoe Massacre' (although that atrocity is stitched perfectly into the narrative's fabric) and I for one would be more than happy to read the outtakes of Corrag's life story. If you feel differently, I fear you may be a little dead inside.

The eponymous heroine (for she most definitely is a heroine) has instantly found a place amongst my favourite literary creations.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By rockhopper on 25 Mar 2010
Format: Hardcover
I have read Eve Green and Oystercatchers by Susan Fletcher and was mesmerised by both these books. I thought that she could not get much better. but I was mistaken. Having almost finished Corrag I could not miss the opportunity to share my thoughts on this beautifully written historical novel.Susan's research into the area surrounding Glencoe is meticulous,I know the area well having walked and climbed here many years ago. Her description of Coire Gabhail i.e The lost valley is spot on. I could smell the peat and heather conjured up by her beautiful prose.However ,even if the reader is not familier with this part of Scotland Susan's descriptive powers will soon put this right. A thoroughly enjoyable and absorbing book. Cant wait for her next effort.Corrag
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Gary Selikow on 28 Oct 2014
Format: Kindle Edition
It is 1692, and a traveler to Scotland from Ireland Charles Griffith , a staunch Jacobite and supporter of the deposed and exiled Catholic James II, and opponent of his replacement the Protestant William Prince of Orange, is called to visit and question a young woman accused of witchcraft.
It is just after the brutal Glencoe massacre in which the McDonald clan is massacred by King William's redcoats, and the young woman Corrag is accused of supernaturally causing the massacre and sentenced to be burned to death.

Corrag;s plight fist inspires contempt in Charles and later compassion as he begins to understand far from being a wanton and loathsome witch, she is a loving and joyful soul, as the book is divided into sections where she talks about her life, and the letters by Charles to his wife in Ireland.

Corrag explains her childhood in England, about her mother who was hung for witchcraft, her flight to Scotland where she came under the protection of the McDonald clan of Glencoe, and above all her joy in small things, her love of and deep compassion for people and animals, her knowledge of herb lore and above all her great understanding and embracing of life, after having had such a hard existence.

Charles Griffith realizes what gem of a soul she really is .
This historical novel combines the Jacobite uprisings of the 1690s with the terrible witch-hunts of Britain which were only repealed in 1735, the last three hundred years before that in which hundreds of thousands of woman were persecuted-for ridiculous things, for being independent,, eccentric, for knowing herb lore, for living alone. 40 000 women were bunred to death in these persecutions over 300 years
And how much have things changed in the world really.
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