REVIEW µ Duncton Wood


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REVIEW µ Duncton Wood Ä Enter the magical colourful poignant world of Bracken and Rebecca Mandrake the tyrant Boswell the scribe Hulver Comfrey and all the other moles of Duncton Wood Set deep in the English countryside this enchanting story tells of an ancient community losing its soul but saved by courage and loveE this enchanting story tells of an ancient community losing its soul but saved by courage and lo. As the tagline on the book suggests this is A clash of good and evil in the savage kingdom of moles It bears comparison to Watership Down but the moles are anthropomorphic As well as speaking they worship the Stone they scribe books and they have the capacity to loveIt is this capacity to love that brings us the story of Bracken and Rebecca two moles who grow up in the Duncton Wood system At the time of their birth the system is being overthrown and then led by two evil moles Mandrake and Rune We learn over the course of the book that there are reasons for Mandrake's ability to be so cruel his upbringing on the wild slopes of Siabod bred him that way but Rune is pure evilRune is perhaps the most interesting character in the book I find Bracken a bit wishy washy and whiny to start and then slightly dense in the middle and then hard to idenitfy with at the end Rebecca is a sweet character but I don't like the way she sighs in her speechThis novel is all over the place regarding pacing When Horwood is concentrating on the goings on in the Duncton system describing the moles and their daily lives he is at his strongest These parts of the book fly by and I am never less than interested in what is happening to Mekkins and Rose and the Pasture molesAt times Horwood goes into a whimsy of describing every tiny thing and there are a couple of occasions in the book that made me almost want to put it down in disgust when Bracken is first exploring the Ancient System; when Boswell and Bracken journey to Siabod; when Bracken secretly attends the singing of the Song These parts of the book really dragI also disliked greatly the descriptions of mating these were far too sensual for what is in essence a book about animal however human they may act at times One instance in particular between Rune and Rebecca is almost obscene and made very very difficult readingAnd the rapeincest scene that we get is a step too far These parts of the book made me feel deeply uncomfortable and lead me to believe I would never want to re read however entertaining other parts of the book areAnd there are fun parts The descriptions of the ever changing woodland the plants and the animals are superb Horwood clearly has a great deal of sympathy and appreciation for the English countryside which comes out in his work A number of his characters are excellent value for the entry fee Mekkins is great fun; Rose is gentle and loving; Boswell is both mysterious and down to earthYou have to suspend your disbelief massively in order to read this book As well as the moles writing they undertake massive journeys Boswell and Bracken in particular travel from Duncton via Uffington to the heart of Wales This is necessary from a plot point of view but I just cannot pretend to belief that two little moles could accomplish thisThe worship of the Stone colours every little part of this book which Horwood declares in his notes at the end is an allegory probably for pagan worship I understand that this only increases in the future books of the series which disappoints me because I found it a little too preachyAll in all a very uneven book which was entertaining in parts but couldn't hold my interest over the long haul

Duncton WoodE this enchanting story tells of an ancient community losing its soul but saved by courage and lo. As the tagline on the book suggests this is A clash of good and evil in the savage kingdom of moles It bears comparison to Watership Down but the moles are anthropomorphic As well as speaking they worship the Stone they scribe books and they have the capacity to loveIt is this capacity to love that brings us the story of Bracken and Rebecca two moles who grow up in the Duncton Wood system At the time of their birth the system is being overthrown and then led by two evil moles Mandrake and Rune We learn over the course of the book that there are reasons for Mandrake's ability to be so cruel his upbringing on the wild slopes of Siabod bred him that way but Rune is pure evilRune is perhaps the most interesting character in the book I find Bracken a bit wishy washy and whiny to start and then slightly dense in the middle and then hard to idenitfy with at the end Rebecca is a sweet character but I don't like the way she sighs in her speechThis novel is all over the place regarding pacing When Horwood is concentrating on the goings on in the Duncton system describing the moles and their daily lives he is at his strongest These parts of the book fly by and I am never less than interested in what is happening to Mekkins and Rose and the Pasture molesAt times Horwood goes into a whimsy of describing every tiny thing and there are a couple of occasions in the book that made me almost want to put it down in disgust when Bracken is first exploring the Ancient System; when Boswell and Bracken journey to Siabod; when Bracken secretly attends the singing of the Song These parts of the book really dragI also disliked greatly the descriptions of mating these were far too sensual for what is in essence a book about animal however human they may act at times One instance in particular between Rune and Rebecca is almost obscene and made very very difficult readingAnd the rapeincest scene that we get is a step too far These parts of the book made me feel deeply uncomfortable and lead me to believe I would never want to re read however entertaining other parts of the book areAnd there are fun parts The descriptions of the ever changing woodland the plants and the animals are superb Horwood clearly has a great deal of sympathy and appreciation for the English countryside which comes out in his work A number of his characters are excellent value for the entry fee Mekkins is great fun; Rose is gentle and loving; Boswell is both mysterious and down to earthYou have to suspend your disbelief massively in order to read this book As well as the moles writing they undertake massive journeys Boswell and Bracken in particular travel from Duncton via Uffington to the heart of Wales This is necessary from a plot point of view but I just cannot pretend to belief that two little moles could accomplish thisThe worship of the Stone colours every little part of this book which Horwood declares in his notes at the end is an allegory probably for pagan worship I understand that this only increases in the future books of the series which disappoints me because I found it a little too preachyAll in all a very uneven book which was entertaining in parts but couldn't hold my interest over the long haul

REVIEW ´ MONEYEXPRESSCARD.CO.UK Ö William Horwood

Duncton Wood ñ Scribe Hulver Comfrey and all the other moles of Duncton Wood Set deep in the English countrysid. The Secret World of the Moles18 February 2017 There are some books out there that it doesn’t matter how long they are the story is really engrossing and I really don’t want to put them down However there are other books that start off good but are so long that by the time I start getting close to the end my eyes start glasing over and I uickly begin to lose interest Then there are books that are basically crap Well this isn’t one of the last type of books and this certainly isn’t one of the first type of books so I guess it falls into the category of being too long Actually one of the major flaws that I did find in this book was not so much that it was too long but rather that it contained two distinct stories and thus it could have worked much better and been much interesting if Horwood has divided it into two books Mind you I also have books two three and four on my bookshelves which makes me wonder if I am ever going to get around to reading them or whether they are going to be tossed out at the next Church Fete – we will see Another thing about this book is that the author seems to be using the same method that was first used in Watership Downs though I had no idea that this was going to be the case until I started reading the book I don’t guess that is generally a problem but it does feel like somebody is simply trying to copy an idea that was originally uite successful Actually it does tend to be pretty hard to be original these days especially when there are so many influences that are going to go into your writing However I guess the originality comes out in how you produce your writings and if you let your own personality and style dictate your work as opposed to simply copying something else In fact it does become pretty obvious when a work is forced particularly where the author isn’t writing for the love of writing but simply writing because they see it as an easy way of making lots of money hint it isn’t So Duncton Wood is a story about moles though it is than just a story it is of an epic However as I suggested it is actually two stories in one The first half of the book is about this nation or system as the book calls it of moles who live in Duncton Wood which apparently is somewhere around Oxford It sets up our two main characters – Brachen and Rebecca – and tells us that it is a love story Then it introduces the antagonist a mole named Mandrake who is actually a pretty big mole that came into the system from afar and pretty much took over However he didn’t just take over but he also destroyed the religion of the moles as well by preventing them from worshiping at the stone and killing anybody who knew the sacred chants Except that Brachen was taught these chants and managed to survive and escaped into ancient tunnels to prepare and eventually emerge So the two stories are thus defeating Mandrake and freeing the systems; and then going on a uest to restore the religious beliefs of the moles in Duncton Wood Religion actually plays a central role in the book namely because we have Mandrake coming along and dominating the system by destroying the religion and then ruling through brute force Then we have Brachen go off on a uest to restore the religious rites that Mandrake had destroyed Further to emphasise the religious nature of the story we even have the protagonists let one of the antagonists go free namely because they do not see a reason to kill him but also because the antagonist who isn’t Mandrake by the way but one of his lieutenants has become such a pathetic individual that killing him will simply make them no better than him The whole thing about Mandrake dominating the system is an interesting one and he does it namely because he can – he has the power and because he has the power he basically uses it However he has a weakness and that is that he hates all religion and actually goes out of his way to basically destroy all aspects of it Okay since the religion is based around a standing stone that is located in the middle of the forest and even Mandrake isn’t that powerful to destroy the stone there is always going to be a reminder of the religion to the moles but since Mandrake has ordered the death of all the priests then memories of the specifics start to fade Mind you Mandrake also forbids moles from traveling outside which means that even the sight of the stone becomes a myth This is another key theme of the story – how time creates myths By destroying all semblance of the religion means that everybody or everymole as it is written forgets the tenants of the religion which means that in the end Mandrake is the one that they all look up to – he is the biggest and the strongest However there must be some sort of issue with his self esteem if he has to do all of this Despite being the biggest and the strongest he has to destroy any rivals and religion is a big rival to any dictator and put himself to replace this The other aspect of time creating myth is when Bracken goes off on his journey and he is gone for so long that people begin to forget about him not so much that they don’t believe he existed but rather that he takes on some form of mythological aspect Mind you we are looking at a fairly primitive society here where even the ability to write and record the past generally doesn’t exist though we are told about scribe moles and yes while they are moles they are also written as if they were sentient beings In such societies mythologies develop much often than does one in a society like ours where pretty much everything is recorded Even then as time starts to intervene the past does become and of a distant memory though we are much able to record those memories than the past However to me a memory is much stronger and valuable than a photograph ever will be because there are just things that a photograph simply cannot catch REVIEW ´ MONEYEXPRESSCARD.CO.UK Ö William Horwood

William Horwood Ö 1 REVIEW

William Horwood Ö 1 REVIEW Enter the magical colourful poignant world of Bracken and Rebecca Mandrake the tyrant Boswell the. It seems the world has almost forgot about Duncton wood The books are hard to find in second hand shops I would rate the books up there with Lord of the rings Dune the dark materials trilogy and watership down If you like that sort of stuff you will simply be amazed by the moles of Duncton Wood Amazed it took you so long to read it for starters The characters are lovable you will really care what happens to them and the world they inhabit underground is well developed to the point of fascinating The religion the moles practice hints to me of pagan celtic nature worship they revere the standing stones still standing left by that civilization in the fringes of western Europe and Ireland millennia ago When they emerge above ground on a spiritual uest and enter our world they see roads as noisy rivers of death and Owls as lethal killers with terrifying screams and hypnotic eyes Mesmerizing anthropomorphic fantasy Seriously do it