[KINDLE] ❦ The Gathering Night ➚ Margaret Elphinstone – Burberry-outlets-online.co.uk

The Gathering Night I actually did something I don t normally do and stopped reading halfway through The story never really captivated me. copied from my original review on.co.uk A geologically documented tsunami, a scattering of archaeological evidence, the shamanistic beliefs of hunter gatherer societies Elphinstone has used these ingredients to recreate a prehistoric world Her research is admirable, but even so is her talent for conjuring up the distant past.This is a stor An Utterly Enchanting Prehistorical Novel Set Deep In Our Stone Age Past, But Resonating As A Parable Of Our Troubled Planet 8,000 Years On An Ecoparable, Family Saga, And Stone Age Adventure In OneBetween Grandmother Mountain And The Cold Sea, Alaia And Her Family Live Off The Land But When One Of Her Brothers Goes Hunting And Never Returns, The Fragile Balance Of Life Is Upset Half Starved And Maddened With Grief, Alaia S Mother Follows Her Visions And Goes In Search Of Her Lost Son When A Stranger From A Rival Tribe Appears On Their Hearth Seeking Shelter, They Wonder If His Stories Of A Great Wave And A People Perished Are To Be Believed What Else Could Drive A Man To Travel Alone Between Tribes In The Depths Of Winter Hopes Of Resolution Come When Alaia S Mother Returns Home As A Go Between, One Able To Commune With The Spirits But As All The Auk People Come To Get Her For Their Annual Gathering Night, Who There Will Listen To The Voice Of A Woman This Is A Compelling, Genre Busting Story Of Conflict, Loss, Love, Adventure, And Devastating Natural Disasters. This my second read for this great novel I liked it even the second time The world building of a Mesolithic settlement in Scotland is outstanding The characters tell their own story many years later at a clan gathering so that the younger members will know some of the reasons for their history It s a plausible device, which I appreciate The story itself touches on issues of comm The Gathering Night is a novel set in pre history We listen to a bunch of people telling a story about a decisive time in their community, over the course of several evenings They tell the story of how one young man disappeared without a trace, how his mother mourned and changed, and how a stranger arrived, displaced by the total destruction of his own tribe through a tsunami I read the entire novel vaguely assuming it was set in the Pacific Northwest Only after reading the afterword did I realise it was set in ScotlandThe novel sets up mysteries, but, like real lives, people cannot dedicate everything to resolving those mysteries Lives go on answers are not always found straight away, if ever It is not a very plot driven novel.The prose is elegant and the speech rhythm and prehistoric humour is well thought out and compellingly believable The level of detail about hunting gathering is comparable to Jean M Auel novels, but there is no single superheroic protagonist here This is a story of a community, and no one gets to dominate No Ayla in this book I enjoyed reading the book and found it quite absorbing even though it is not very plot driven It is a mellow, but satisfying read The only issue I take with this and, of course, Auel s work is the pers This is set in Mesolithic Scotland, a time about which very little is known This gives Elphinstone scope to portray a fully imagined subsistence society with its own mythology and belief systems Its characters live off the land and sea and feel close to the animals they hunt and the spirits which govern all their interactions Since it makes sense to the people in the book, that the belief system doesn t actually cohere is neither here nor there In any case very few such things do cohere The tale is told literally by various of the characters taking turns to narrate the central events round a campfire, perhaps at one of the various gatherings the Auk people, around whom the book revolves, attend throughout the year The people are prone to humble bragging of the I m sorry this catch is so meagre or I m sorry this gift of food is so inadequate type.As events unfold the tightness of the plot becomes apparent This is cleverly done, things that at first appear unrelated turn out to be pivotal, and the characters within are all believable as actors in the scenario and as people full stop Apart from their belief in the closeness of their spirits and reincarnation if a child isn t recognised by a family member within days of birth it will be cast out, their intimate connection with their environment, they could be you, me, or anyone you meet It s not fast paced but it is really engaging The story is told from the viewpoint of several narrators sitting round the camp fire during the Mesolithic era in Scotland And these are indeed different people but they speak with a collective voice which illustrates the communal nature of their existence There is a little repetition of scenes from these different viewpoints but it all builds quite nicely They depend on one another, on their Go Betweens, and the animals that provide for them These early hunter gatherers are depicted as being surprisingly sophisticated, civilised, caring and thoughtful They have their laws and their religion It s amusing the way they all refrain from being boastful, so as not to upset their spirit gods Brutishness between people is a rarity and violence is permitted only to address serious crimes But what happens when laws are Margaret Elphinstone has written a convincing account of what life might have been like in the Mesolithic era in Scotland This era encompassed six thousand years of human occupation from the last Ice Age until the agricultural revolution of around 4000BC Not much is known of Scotland s hunter gatherers, but Elphinstone drew parallels from Inuit, Native American and Sami traditions Hunter gatherer cultures share spiritual practices which show their deep relationship to their land People could make d funny thing I had almost finished this book when I discovered there was an italian edition.Now, while I have no problems at all with reading books in english, of course I prefer reading in my mother tongue, if I can choose The tentation of headdesking was strong Then, I learned that the italian ebook costs 5 dollars than what I payed for the english one My mood lifted immediately At least, my purchase was motivated PAnyway I had been looking for another pre historical novel to read since I gave up on Earth s children s saga, and this book was literally the first one available that I found looking through Goodread s suggestions With that I mean that the other novels that interested me were out of print, or unavailable on kindle anyway yes Reindeer moon, I am talking of you I ll own you some day, you can trust that Also, it was one of those whose plot caught my attention because it didn t seem to include some major romance and it had mystery in it Well I thank my spider senses for this choice, I ADORE this book I might also say I prefer it to Ms Auel s series First of all, no tvu lurv anyway the part after Ayla and Jondalar meet in VoH are my least favourite part of the book actually , and then..there was something in Elphinstone s description of the characters world, behaviour and It was well written, with lovely descriptions of the Mesolithic Scottish landscape 7,000 years ago The author has done a lot of research into what is quite a mysterious period of prehistory I am fascinated by the Mesolithic and am really glad someone has written a novel on it Jean M Auel s prehistoric series is of course very famous, but is based firmly in the Upper Palaeolithic, a very different time and period even further back in time The Gathering Night deals with the human consequences following a great tsunami This was a very real event, caused by a landslide off the coast of Norway It inundated Doggerland , the low lying marshland flats that once connected Britain with the rest of European mainland It extended over much of where the Northern Sea now lies, and was where Kemen s Lynx People were likely based in the book There is a big focus in the story on the people s spirituality and animistic world view, lead by the wisdom of Go Betweens or shamans, and how they rationalise the events that unfold.I liked that the book has no maps, and the author holds her own with helping the reader visualise the landscape She creates her own terms, incorporated into the characters language, for the cardinal directions and naming the various lochs and islands along the west coast of Scotland The names of the characters were odd, and it was only when I finished the book and rea


About the Author: Margaret Elphinstone

Margaret Elphinstone is a Scottish novelist She studied at Queen s College in London and Durham University She was until recently, Professor of Writing in the Department of English Studies at the University of Strathclyde in Glasgow, now retired Her academic research areas are Scottish writers and the literature of Scotland s offshore islands.She did extensive study tours in Iceland, Greenland,


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