Nearly 50 years after William Golding wrote The Inheritors Alan Garner wrote Thursbitch. Both are trying to catch the lives and values of bygone generations, recreating their lost language (even if this creates difficulties for the readers) and showing how those previous generations were far more sophisticated than we often think. Thursbitch tells two stories which are set in the same place, the real valley of Thursbitch near Macclesfield, but set over two hundred years apart. But one man in the first generation and one woman in the later one somehow sense each other through the strength of the valley which is itself something of an enchanted, living, commanding presence. I would not recommend this book for everyone but some people will love it. Alan Garner has probably been under-rated as a novelist because his starting point has been children's books. However, he never regarded himself as a children's writer - although all his works, including this one, have elements of magic, creativity and poetry that we associate more with books for the young.
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