The Gathering Night PDF ↠ The Gathering ePUB


The Gathering Night Between 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 Then a stranger from a rival tribe appears on their hearth seeking shelter Are his stories of a great wave and a people perished really to be believed What else could drive a man to travel alone between tribes in the depths of winterHopes 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 together for their annual Gathering Night who there will listen to the voice of a womanThe Gathering Night is a story of conflict loss love adventure and devastating natural disasters This utterly enchanting pre historical novel is set deep in our stone age past but resonates as a parable of our troubled planet 8000 years on 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 uite 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 broken and their Spirits are upset?The story is well rounded detailed carefully constructed and absorbing I really enjoyed the trip into this one uite plausible construction of the distant past Wonderfully written and engaging story about the peoples who lived in mesolithic Scotland some 8000 10000 years ago Told from the points of view of the many different characters in the novel and it all worked well together This book emphasizes the profound connection that these prehistoric peoples had to the world around them and sadly something I fear most of us no longer have I should have liked this book It’s well written the plot is tight and clearly planned out – no meandering or filler scenes here – and it kicks off with a mystery and develops into a complex character drama On top of that the book is thoroughly researched and the author utilises that knowledge to paint the details of Mesolithic life c 7000 BCE It sounds like just what has been missing from the other stone age novels I’ve read But somehow I just couldn’t get into itI disagree with some of the author’s interpretations or leaps over the factual gaps but to be honest that wasn’t what was holding me back Rather it was the mode of story telling Characters in the book each have their own alternating sections through which they recount events in first person past tense Although each adds something new often they are retelling the same event but from different perspectives Personally I just felt like there was too much re treading going on and I was finding it soporific I pushed through it in the beginning as the central mystery was prompting me onwards but the author never actually goes anywhere with it – view spoilerwe never do find out what happened to Bakar hide spoiler funny thing I had almost finished this book when I discovered there was an italian editionNow 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 thenthere was something in Elphinstone's description of the characters' world behaviour and culture that felt true Of course it's all speculation we know next to nothing on those people anyway and the two sets of novels are set in different times mesolithic for this book paleolitic for ms Auel's but something in Auel's mythology seem less and less authentical if confronted to what Elphinstone recreated there besidesto much sex in Auel's religion oo''Anyway stage#2 here's the plotIt all starts with the disappearance of young Bakar He leaves his family father mother Nekanè sisters Alaia and Haizea Alaia's husband Amets to go hunting with his dog and he never returns back After his disappearance we soon get that he's very likely to be dead his mother becomes a Go Between a shaman basically This is the first major event and first major mystery of this story what happened to Bakar?Then another thing happens When the family arrives to one of their summer camps they learn one of their cousins Sendoa has taken with him and his group a stranger Kemen This man claims that he had to flee his homeland the Linx people's territories after a tsunami has wiped away his family All who survived were him his brother Basajaun and a bunch of cousins Togetherbrothers and cousins set off to reach the Auk's people lands the main characters' tribe where they had very distant cousins Basajaun and the others during the way chose not to reach for the Auks but to stay among the heron people Kemen arrived to the Auks aloneAt the following Gathering camp when all the auks from the various families meet for the big hunt everyone is asking themselves if the spirits that destroyed linx people didn't follow Kemen among the Auks also becauseremember Bakar's death? yeah they uestion if bad spirits following Kemen didn't take Bakar with them Then another mystery A girl Osanè is found severly injuried Someone tried to choke her to death Nekanè helps Osanè to get better and the Go Between ask Kamen to take her as his wife enraging Osanè's other suitorEdurBut after this set of events hunt starts to be difficult Meat is scarce the animals won't give themselves to the people it's a sign that the spirits are enraged by something misterious that has to be solved and fixed if the Auks want to surviveNow what happens next is the tale of how those two misteries got solved at last and of how things were fixed in the end I can't go further with the plot or I'll spoil the story and I don't think you would like me to spoil it xDWhat I really liked besides the world's building that was incredible is that it's a choral narration Basically the story is narrated by the main characters just as if you were there listening to them telling it around a fire that's what happens Basically the main characters are telling in turns this story around a fire at gathering camp It's a very smart narration device to me It gave even authenticity to the story since for all the time of the narration we are in their very heads we are part of the story We are characters too We are the children listening to the adults telling us a very important story And this made the whole world those characters lived in ever believable and real to meThis is a big difference from the earth's children saga where the narrator was often distant from the characters telling us things from a modern POV what those prehistoric guys thought Besides while the research work was no less accurate than earth's children Elphinstone put her research into her work in a subtle way than Auel who sometimes got lost in showing us what she knew of pre history Here the research is woven into the plot advancing it instead of interrupting it to give us academical notionsThe plot was kind of slow actually Not too slow to spoil the thrill or the whole book actually I liked that the rythm was not fast It gave time to deepen the characters and their everyday's lives which was very interesting And it make the conclusion of the story very very Climatic I have enjoyed the final scene A LOT I tell you everything will be put in its right place and everything will make sense in the end And in a MAJESTIC way She was able to set a narrative rythm slow but a rythm anyway And I liked it A LOTThe characters are all very well characterized You can tell them apart by the way they speakeveryone differently according to their personalities as it's supposed to be of courseI have enjoyed this book so much definitely a must read

  • Paperback
  • 375 pages
  • The Gathering Night
  • Margaret Elphinstone
  • English
  • 02 June 2014
  • 9781847672889

About the Author: Margaret Elphinstone

Margaret Elphinstone is a Scottish novelist She studied at ueen'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 islandsShe did extensive study tours in Iceland Greenland


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