Gathering the Water PDF ☆ Gathering the PDF or


Gathering the Water The cover drew me in first The colour is at the perfect point between blue and grey and the drawing is lovely Who is the man and what is he looking down at?I hadn’t read anything by Robert Erdic before but I was aware that he was a respected author and so I picked up the book to find out a little The premise was intriguing and so home it cameIn 1847 after the death of his fianceé Charles Weightman is sent to Yorkshire to supervise the flooding of a valleyIt’s an element of history that I don’t recall finding in a novel before Springs and wells that have supplied communities with water cannot cope with new demands and population growth and so valleys are turned into reservoirsHe expected to find unpopulated countryside but instead he finds homes still occupied and people who are reluctantly having to leave the only homes they have ever known And so of course Charles meets with suspicion resentment and downright hostilityMary Latimer is a widow She moved back to her home in the valley so that she could bring her sister home from the asylum but mow she faces the prospect of losing her home and being forced to send her sister back to the asylumThere is a mutual recognition between Mary and Charles acknowlege each other as people who have borne losses who are isolated who are trying to do the right thing in difficult situationsThere is no relationship – this isn’t that sort of book – just two lives being swept away as the tide risesA great deal is unsaid and many uestions go unanswered while the rising tide dominates everything In unskilled hands that might be a problem but here it somehow works Indeed it feels rightThe story is inevitably serious and of course there can be no happy ending But it is both moving and gripping as it unravels in perfect sparse prose and all of the elements work together beautifullyDefinitely a book that will stay with me and an author to investigate further The journey of Charles Weightman is a journey of loss It is the loss of his enthusiasm the loss of his purpose the loss of his sense of self It is a novel about the journey that we must all take in life and how we start that life full of dreams and ambitions hope and joy and it is only through the gentle passage of time we come to understand the true nature and reality of things This is not to say that life is harsh or unfair but simply that life is Critics say that the book meanders along and this is true and right because it is a book that follows the vagaries of life itself None of us follow a straight path but rather our lives are made up of a series of vignettes that somehow coalesce into what we become This then is the journey of Charles Weightman He comes to complete the construction of the dam and by the end we come to see the destruction of a man The book is beautifully written the prose is wonderful the setting is both magnificent and diabolical It is a book that you must read with the little expectation of revelatory moments or spellbinding action instead you must read it with the knowledge you will be taking a journey into the world of another a journey that will lead you through suffering and loss disappointment and misery But read it you must because at its core it is your story This is a somewhat puzzling book The prose is exuisite and the picture Edric paints of the bleak Pennine landscape is perfect; he has an eye and a word for everything which makes the hills mysterious and forbidding and exciting But to what end? There is little in the way of plot; the novel is a collection of almost random episodes in the brief history of a man sent in the mid 19th century to a remote valley to oversee the eviction of the homesteaders so that a new reservoir may be created for the town of Halifax It is a novel which is at once satisfying and disappointing Someone somewhere wrote that Edric's style is to mirror the unconnectedness of life to point out that things happen in a random way irrelevant to a central theme or narrative That is certainly the overall impression created in this novel Yet it is in many ways gorgeous the imagery is brilliant and the writing spare and powerful I shall read it again for sure A different book now to the one I read seven or eight years ago With a right wing government in the UK a story about the dismantling of a poor community for the easy profit of the wealthy feels much closer to homeThe Board are the remote callous group of investors who have arranged for a valley in the North of England to be flooded First they hire local men to strip the buildings Then they outsource the work for maximum profit The disadvantaged suffer; the mentally ill The narrator a duped pawn in the enterprise bears witness to it all while grieving over his recently deceased wife Weights are gradually placed on the scales of loss and gain where the loss is all here and the gain all elsewhere This is a sad and dark novel that lingers in the mind long after finishing it The grief in it is sometimes overwhelming but it is a realistic historical novel I would read by Robert Edric after finishing this This is a novel about a man who is sent to the site of a new dam in Lancashire in the 1830s He is the agent for the owners and his brief includes overseeing the clearances of the existing dwellings and the logistics preparing the dam for use This is a classic Robert Edric scenario; taking an unglamorous subject and constructing a very readable tale In the course of his work he is resented by many of the locals whos homes have been affected and his association with a woman he meets and her back story is superb reading The landscape is very bleak and you can almost feel the drabness from the descriptions but the uality of the writing does not disappoint Beautiful cover This was a uality read but I felt the lack of plot to sustain me after a while Not much happens but it happens in beautiful prose It is 1847 northern England and Charles Weightman has been given the unenviable task of overseeing the flooding of the Forge Valley and evicting its lingering inhabitants Weightman is heartily resented by these locals and he himself is increasingly unconvinced both of the wisdom of his appointment and of the integrity and motives of the company men who posted him there He finds some solace however in his enigmatic neighbour Mary Latimer Caring for her mad sister Mary is also an outsider and a companionship develops between the two of them which offers them both some comfort and support in their mutual isolationAs winter closes steadily in and as the waters begin to rise in the Forge Valley it becomes increasingly evident that the man made deluge cannot be avoided; not by the locals desperate to save their homes nor by the reluctant agent of their destruction Weightman himselfIn a masterful new novel Edric captures powerful human emotions with grace and precision The hauntingly resonant backdrop to this story of David and Goliath marks Edric's dramatic return to historical literary fiction Given to me to read for my book group the blurb on the back of this and the Caspar David Friedrich inspiredcopied illustration on the cover gave me some hopeAlas no it wasn't to my tastes This is a tale from the mid Nineteenth Century of an engineer overseeing the flooding of a valley in 'The North' and the resistance of the locals to all this No in truth I'm not wholly sure what the point of it all was I found it relentlessly grim the ending particularly so with a writing style veering somehow between young adult simplicity and unnecessary descriptiveness But all it was describing was wet grey cold scenery yeah we get it and uninteresting characters Admittedly there were only two characters of any depth everyone else was a simpleton stereotype At times a bit too spare in its storytelling this historical novel embeds itself pretty deeply in the Bronte esue bleak 19th century landscape of northern England's moorlands One particular valley is about to be flooded owing to the construction of a dam The contrast between who benefits and who suffer is stark indeed People with next to nothing clinging stubbornly to their homes and fields as the water starts to creep up around them; and our protagonist is given the unenviable task of reporting on the 'progress' of the waters and the necessary removal of the people and all evidence of their having lived in this valleybleak bleak bleak

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