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The Voice That Thunders Paperback – 3 Jul 1997


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Product details

  • Paperback: 224 pages
  • Publisher: The Harvill Press (3 July 1997)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1860463320
  • ISBN-13: 978-1860463327
  • Product Dimensions: 21.2 x 13.6 x 2 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (15 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 1,425,633 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

Alan Garner was born in Congleton, Cheshire, in 1934. His began writing his first novel at the age of 22 and is renowned as one of Britain's outstanding writers. He has won many prizes for his writing, and, in 2001 he was awarded the OBE for services to literature. He holds two honorary doctorates and is a Fellow of the Society of Antiquaries of London. In 2004 he co-founded The Blackden Trust http://www.theblackdentrust.org.uk/

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Review

"His is a consummate artist's vision that matches landscape and people and story; his is an artist's ear able to hear preliterate song as well as local speech and adolescent slang. With great skill he has wielded these into tales uniquely blending rustic vigour and classical economy of diction. They have won him a place in the company of English writers" (Ralph Elliott Labrys 7)

"Garner is his own man... taut, powerful and credible" (Penelope Lively)

"His work has a symphonic quality unique in fiction" (Jacky Gillott The Times)

"Alan Garner's themes are huge, urgent, compassionate, his voice distinguished by clarity, compression, precision, depth of feeling and sharpness of thought" (Neil Philip in A Fine Anger: A Critical Introduction to the Work of Alan Garner) --This text refers to an alternate Paperback edition.

Book Description

A rich collection of writings ranging through archeology, myth, music, philosophy, language and literature; it also serves as a poetic autobiography of a great and deeply English writer. --This text refers to an alternate Paperback edition.

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18 of 18 people found the following review helpful By Mrs. Lj Cox on 15 Aug 2012
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Alan Garner is best known for his books for younger teenagers, with their strong elements of folklore: first, The Weirdstone of Brisingamen and The Moon of Gomrath, both set around Alderley Edge in Cheshire, but stepping from the everyday world to a parallel world full of terror and delight. Then there's Elidor, where an ordinary family find they have a foot in two worlds and have to work through world-shaking events. Garner's Stone Book Quartet changes the focus slightly to cover times, rather than worlds; Red Shift deals with the way one's world changes with adolescence. The Owl Service visits Wales and Welsh myth and legend, bringing together the strands of place and time.

Alan Garner's later novels, Thursbitch and Strandloper, are less for children than for adults, but again the blend of time, place and mythologies is a powerful mix.

In "The Voice That Thunders" Alan Garner describes events and places in his own life that have influenced and inspired his work. The reader gains a real sense of Garner's ability to wander in alternative realities, and we see how powerful a tool his imagination is, and how powerful an influence Alderley Edge has on that imagination.

"The Voice That Thunders" is highly recommended for anyone who has read and enjoyed Garner's fiction. More appropriate for adults and older children than for the under-12s.
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12 of 12 people found the following review helpful By Basil's friend on 15 Jan 2011
Format: Paperback
I bought this in the 50th anniversay year of The Weirdstone of Brisingamen. This was a favourite childhood book and even now it remains in my top five. Ita has probably influenced my reading and writing ever since a special teacher read it to me as an 8 year old. Dipping into this book has given me an understanding of how Alan Garner feels things and how he creates the magic of words. Well worth getting if you're interested in creativity.
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26 of 27 people found the following review helpful By D. Ackerley on 28 Jan 2005
Format: Paperback
As near to an autobiography as you can get.
A roughly chronological detail of the various things that have shaped Alan Garner's outlook and writing.
A pleasure to read in itself and also quite open and frank for an otherwise elusive writer.
A review can't really do it justice - if you like his work, then it should be on your bookshelf.
Will probably be of interest to folk who have a professional interest in books, publishing and literature, together with people with anthropology interests that overlap folklore, mythology and man's place in the landscape...
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Elginson on 27 Nov 2014
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
If you are one of the many millions of Alan Garner fans you need to read this book. It's not a novel, it's a collection of talks and seminars that he has given through the years, but together they combine to produce what actually reads as an autobiography, or at least a narrative of his formative years and how his creativity has developed. It seems hard to believe that Garner is now in his 80th year. His powerful writing has thrilled and moved so many, including me.
Born in Congleton, Cheshire, from a family that has roots centuries deep in the local landscape and culture, all Garner's life and work has been shaped by a profound sense of the place. Garner and the landscape around Alderley Edge are inconceivable without each other. The place has shaped him in the deepest sense and he now shapes our own view of it. He had a sickly childhood, hearing himself pronounced dead at the age of six! Happy years at Manchester Grammar School and Oxford, where he studied Latin, Greek, Ancient History and Philosophy followed. He returned to live near The Edge and to embrace its history and its legends that so much suffuse all his work.
In this book he takes us through the beginning of his writing and the obsessive care with which he writes. Most books took many years to complete. He shares his interest in the local archaeology and the mythology with which he so deeply engages. His own family played a crucial role in the development of the Alderley legend: a great-grandfather who carved the Wizard into the rock by the well and who made the stone circle that is referred to in the Weirdstone. All of Garner's work is permeated with a profound sense of geography (I read him with a map close to hand) and I doubt if he ever invented a fictional place in any text.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By Hecate 55 on 27 Dec 2012
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
This collection of essays gives fans of Alan Garner's work a real insight into the man himself and his background. If you have enjoyed his books, this is a vital addition and well worth buying.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By A. Woodfin on 18 Sep 2012
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Alan Garner is truly extraordinary. A Grown Up in ways so few people seem to be any more. As rich, lucid and deep as an oak grown up around a rock in a place people have visited for thousands of years. Challenging, painful and joyful and to be drawn in from the roots.
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Format: Paperback
I began to read this book of essays and lectures with some trepidation. Since before my teenage years I have loved Alan Garner’s books and have grown up with them at my side, but it has been a relationship that has become progressively difficult. His books, particularly Strandloper and Thursbitch, which can be near to incomprehensible. I was thus worried, that this book of essays would be a similarly difficult read.

I am so glad that I didn’t let these concerns stop me from reading The Voice That Thunders though. Yes, there are some intellectally challenging chapters that shows Garner’s detailed knowledge of his subject, but mostly it is a collection of talks that cannot fail you to write stories and enjoy words.

It’s a book that I can’t begin to count the number of times I quoted sections from it, let alone the number of times I didn’t because it wasn’t convenient at the time, and then I’d passed another half dozen of quotable passages. An inspiring read!
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