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Susan Campbell

Do read Alan Garner's book "Strandloper", it takes the imagination on a relentless circular tour, conveying scenes and characters with spare, efficient poetic prose.
I'm lost in admiration, and hope his writing style influences my own work-in-progress.


I loved the Owl Service when I first read it. Great characterisation and effective use of an ordinary setting to create uncertainty. Recommended read.


I loved him, he was the Philip Pullman of my generation! The Weirdstone of Brisingamen was definitely my favourite; I read it when I was about eight or nine and it was my first experience of being totally gripped by a page-turner, especially as the setting was Alderley Edge which was the Sunday-afternoon-out territory of my childhood.There's a sequel called The Moon of Gomrath.
I wasn't nearly so keen on the later teenage books; I found them a bit fey.

Dark Puss

I'm amazed you haven't read any of these! I very strongly recommend Alan Garner's books and he is a favourite at Dark Puss Mansion amongst all three of us. Can I also recommend Red Shift. If your read Weirdstone then you have to read Moon of Gomrath. Although both ostensibly children's books, and R loved being read them when he was nine, there are some quite well done "coming of age" aspects to them.

I think you would find a number of readers chez Cornflower who would like these novels.

Lucy Coats

Alan Garner is a must-read. The Owl Service is as scary as anything I've ever read--a reworking of the old Mabinogian myth of Blodeuwedd. But I think my favourite is The Stone Book Quartet. Just a magical use of language and atmosphere.


I haven't read The Owl Service but I adored The Weirdstone of Brisingamen and The Moon of Gomrath and Elidor and my copies of them are very battered indeed from very frequent re-readings.
They are all amazingly atmospheric and his use of language is, as a lot of people have said, magical.


I loved Alan Garner's books as a child, and would really echo Lucy's recommendation to read The Owl Service.


All of the childrens ones are fabulous - start with The Owl Service and Brisingamen, they will be quick but satisfying (I was sadly disappointed when by his venture into adult literature, but I may be out on a limb there)


Wonderfully imaginative children's books. I read them as an adult but loved them. The combination of mystery, myth, magic and a great sense of place make a very satisfying read. Susan Cooper's books, if you or your children have read them, come to mind when I think of Alan Garner. Might try them again myself on a rainy day!

Dark Puss

J also recommends, as do other commentators, Elidor. I echo LizF's comments about the physical state of our copies!

P xx


The first time I read The Owl Service I couldn't put it down.
I think Red Shift is utterly brilliant, though I do know people who find it so depressing they claim to hate it.

Julie Fredericksen

Never heard of him over here, but these books sound intriguing. I will have to search them out.


I read The Owl Service when I was young, about 12 I think. There was also a television series on, the Sunday tea-time kind, which I remembered when I read the book. I seem to remember that as being quite good. I have not read any other Alan Garner books, though I am tempted to now!

adele geras

Do read the Owl Service at once,'s outstanding. I couldn't understand what was going on in Red Shift but must try again. But Owl Service is real must-read!

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