Retrato do autor

Carys Davies

Autor(a) de West

7+ Works 754 Membros 72 Críticas 1 Favorited

Obras por Carys Davies

West (2018) 340 exemplares, 29 críticas
Clear (2024) 199 exemplares, 28 críticas
The Mission House (2020) 109 exemplares, 10 críticas
The Redemption of Galen Pike (2014) 79 exemplares, 4 críticas
Some New Ambush (2007) 19 exemplares, 1 crítica

Associated Works

Red Room: New Short Stories Inspired by the Brontes (2013) — Contribuidor — 5 exemplares


Conhecimento Comum



A short novel that takes place in Scotland at a time when wealthy landowners began clearing their land of any people living on their land and trying to make a living. They wanted them relocated with whatever belongings the landlord deemed of worth the people and placed where they were unlikely to be able to make a living. The landowners brought in sheep in place of these people because the sheep would make them more money. A minister whose church has been split from its original denomination finds himself with little money and needs funds to live on and to help start up a new parish. He is hired to go to a faraway place to remove the last inhabitant from the landowner's property. John, the minister, falls from a cliff and badly injured. Ivar, the tennant, finds him, brings him to his abode and nurses him back to health. The two form a deep friendship, which turns to something more one evening. John's wife decides she must save her husband from his predicament and goes to retrieve him. She sees from her arrival the closeness that has occurred between the men. In the end, all three leave together to see if they can make a life together.

Kirkus: Aminister is sent to evict the last inhabitant of an isolated island in the North Sea.

It’s 1843, and two major upheavals are roiling Scotland. First, the barbaric Clearances, in which landowners replace their “impoverished, unreliable tenants” with profitable occupants like sheep, have finally made their way to Scotland’s austere northern islands. Second, one-third of Scotland’s Presbyterian ministers have revolted against landowner-controlled church appointments—and consequently deprived themselves of any income. Reverend John Ferguson is one of these suddenly impoverished ministers, which is why he agrees to voyage 400 miles into the North Sea to evict a barren island’s sole remaining tenant. Armed with a pistol and a calotype image of his wife, Mary, John is dropped off and told that the boat will return in a month. He’s barely there a day, however, when he falls off a cliff and is rescued by Ivar, the lonely man he’s there to remove. The two men do not share a language, but while Ivar tends John’s wounds and teaches him words like leura (“a period of short, unreliable quiet between storms”), he finds himself increasingly attracted to John…who is too ashamed to admit that he’s come to kick Ivar out of his home. Meanwhile, hundreds of miles away, Mary learns something about this particular clearance that causes her to set off in search of her husband. Will John come to reciprocate Ivar’s more-than-filial feelings? Will Ivar leave peacefully? Will John’s hidden pistol bring the leura to a harsh and sudden end? With her characteristically buoyant prose and brisk sense of plotting, Davies crafts a humane tale about individuals struggling to maintain dignity beneath competing systems of disenfranchisement. But while a lesser author might allow their characters to be terminally lashed by these historical travesties, Davies infuses John, Mary, and Ivar with refreshingly fantastical levels of creativity and grace, which helps them find a startling new way to avert disaster.

A deft and graceful yarn about language, love, and rebellion against the inhumane forces of nature.
… (mais)
bentstoker | 27 outras críticas | Jul 7, 2024 |
Recently I read in The Guardian that Welsh author Carys Davies was “a writer to watch”. I immediately borrowed this book, the only one available in my library system at the time. A striking collection of short stories so beautifully written that I will definitely be searching for more. Davies’ spare style has been honed to perfection.
VivienneR | 3 outras críticas | Jul 7, 2024 |
[4.25] This novella set in the 1840s tells the tale of the last remaining resident of a remote island off the coast of Scotland and an impoverished minister who is dispatched to evict the inhabitant. Davies’ writing is sparse but remarkably evocative, exploring in only a couple hundred pages intricate issues that range from faith and friendship to the challenge of communicating through language barriers. In an interview conducted shortly after the book’s debut, the Welch-born novelist talks about how she built this story around the Highland Clearances, an era when many people were evicted from their homes in the Scottish Highlands and western islands. Readers of my reviews know all too well that my most common criticism involves talented authors who simply won’t entertain the notion that sometimes “less is more.” Hence, it surprises even me as I pen this observation: I wish Davis had spent more time developing the backgrounds and motivations of the three main characters (the island’s inhabitant, the minister and the minister’s wife). This reader was yearning for a bit more character development in order to better understand the final chapters (no spoilers here).… (mais)
brianinbuffalo | 27 outras críticas | Jul 5, 2024 |
This brief novel captures a moment in time in 19th century Scotland when the church is splitting in an argument over power and wealth, and when landowners are forcibly removing the poor from their lands to create room for crops and livestock. John Ferguson is a pastor in the new Scottish church. So he has split from the old church in support of the poor. But he and his new wife, Mary, are without any means to live, so he takes a job to remove a last remaining man from a remote island - talk about a conflict of interest! When John gets to the island, he injures himself and Ivar rescues him. The two slowly create a relationship, learning each other's language.

There are things I loved about this book - the remote setting, the exploration of language, John's competing interests of his ethics vs. money/survival. I liked that the short length meant that every word counted and there were a lot of themes and ideas that weren't explicitly explored but were there to think about. But there were a few things I wish were done differently. I was a little uncomfortable with the portrayal of Ivar. I really felt like Davies (probably unintentionally) made him seem "less than" John. His interior life seemed small and he's barely surviving on his island. I also would have liked a little more detail about Ivar's reaction to finally discovering he had to leave the island. I think both John and Ivar's feelings and reactions were kept a bit out of view from the reader. In some ways I liked that distance, but in other ways it bothered me and I wanted more.

Overall, a good book about a fascinating moment in history, and I'd like to read more by [[Carys Davies]].
… (mais)
japaul22 | 27 outras críticas | Jun 27, 2024 |



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