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The Fox Kindle Edition
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Top customer reviews
We follow the various characters through large parts of their life and the descriptions are detailed and colourful and do bring the picts to life to some extent.
The good in the book is ruined by two things.
First the story in modern time offers nothing good to the reader, it is dreary soap-opera with none of the colour or interest of the historical story.
Aine is believable but not interesting, an the other modern characters are given no personality.
Every time a chapter started with Aine it was a struggle not to simply skip through.
The second problem is that very little happens in the book, there is a romance of sorts, it is well written but it is predictable and moves into more soap opera and dull domesticity very quickly, the Romans appear near the end to inject some impetus but even then it is low key and the modern story has already told us the ending.
This would have been better as a true historical fantasy without the time travelling angle.
As a Celtic descendent myself this book drew me in and immersed me in the times of my forefathers and mothers. Its spirit infused my very soul as I read it and I am a better person for having done so.
I was taken by surprise by the clarity of writing and by the physical and spiritual transportation to eon's gone by and won over by the relevance of the story to todays turbulent times. It seems that turbulence is normal for human kind and conflict is never more than a generation away if that. This story is one of the importance of kinship, family and unity against conflict and one of healing and faith in ones purpose and path in this life. It is also the story of a very real sacrifice, the sacrifice of a mother and a father for their family and their clan so that those who are loved may survive and prosper. It is highly relevant to todays disconnected way of life where family is scattered to the winds of the world and only electronic connection is the norm.
This is a read for anyone who has loved and lost or loved and won, its a story for those who need to re-connect with our ancient tribal past and who we actually are and where we have come from. It is a story that reminds of of the journey of mankind and woman kind and why we exist and that the obstacles, trials and joys that exist are all part of life's path, a labyrinth.
Although the story is set in my home Country of Scotland and talks with accuracy, no doubt, about my ancestors and heritage, the story is equally pertinent to natives from all over this planet we live on. It especially made me think of the native indians of the americas and of the aboriginal australasians, the african natives and even the middle eastern tribes. It speaks of the same human pressures that have always existed and will continue to exist as long as there are humans on this planet. It tells of all of these cultures and how they still permeate modern life today in ways that we are mostly unaware of. The story hints at our festivals, traditions, fables and songs and as humans we are better to be reminded of this lest we forget the trials of our ancestors and the sacrifices they made for us to still breathe and procreate.
I commend Arlene for this wonderful book, you brought a new colour into my life these past few days and leave fragments of bronze, black and hazel with me forever. The fox and the raven now have new meaning.
My second toe is also longer than my big toe!
The Fox and The Thistle
There is a very real threat of Roman invasion and we experience, with Jahna, the terrible decisions made to try to save the people.
Jahna somehow interacts with an archeologist in today's Scotland and leads her to find the site of her village.
It is a well written book, and the characters develop through their experiences. The only thing that I would criticize is the use of the odd American word in the mouths of British people. An example is the use of 'realtor' instead of 'estate agent'. No British person would use this word.
I thoroughly enjoyed reading this and will recommend it to my friends.
Spanning 2 millennia the author weaves a fantastic and totally engrossing tale.
The characters are believable and I was totally immersed in the ancient Pictish world imagined in the pages.
Although the author is American, she has managed to sound Scottish almost all the way through the book. Once or twice there was American English used that would not be used in Scotland but it did not in any way diminish the story.
I will certainly be on the lookout for the next offering from Arlene.
One issue that annoyed me throughout the book was the editing.
I lost count of the times that names were not capitalised, it must be over 100.
It's a pity that the editor was not as good as the author.
I too was put off by the Americanisms in the text.
As far as rabbits are concerned, it had been thought for many years that the Normans brought them to England, but later research shows that the Romans brought at least some - whether they became wild in Scotland at the time of the story is less likely.
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