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Customer Review

on 9 July 2012
'Runt' is narrated by a 16 year old boy who is sent to live with his uncle high up in the Welsh hills, to escape the violence at home between his mother and the man he calls Notdad. He calls his uncle his Drunkle, for reasons that soon become obvious, but he's a good man, and the boy is safer and happier with him. The boy's presence also helps the Drunkle, who is still reeling from the suicide of his wife.

The book is full of the beauty of the natural landscape, and everything living in the air and earth and water. The boy is prone to fits - although the fits are actually more like visionary trances, that he calls his Times; and his Times are mystical journeys that teach him about the world and the pagan magic of it.

The book drew me in straight away through the beauty and vitality of the writing and the language. It reads like poetry and becomes mesmeric, in parts. The story becomes darker as it progresses, but I can't help feeling it was also slightly anti-climactic. I need to read it again, I think, to be sure. But it was a hugely enjoyable read, the kind of writing that reminds me why I love reading. It's only 148 pages long, but it's definitely quality over quantity.
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