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The Old Ways By Robert Macfarlane

The Old Ways

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Written by a nature writer who was shortlisted for the Samuel Johnson prize 2012, this title offers an exploration of the ghosts and voices that haunt old paths, of the stories our tracks keep and tell, of pilgrimage and ritual, and of songlines and their singers.
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The Old Ways Summary


The Old Ways: A Journey on Foot by Robert Macfarlane

The Old Ways is the stunning fourth book by acclaimed nature writer Robert Macfarlane. Shortlisted for the Samuel Johnson prize 2012 In The Old Ways Robert Macfarlane sets off from his Cambridge home to follow the ancient tracks, holloways, drove-roads and sea paths that form part of a vast network of routes criss-crossing the British landscape and its waters, and connecting them to the continents beyond. The result is an immersive, enthralling exploration of the ghosts and voices that haunt old paths, of the stories our tracks keep and tell, of pilgrimage and ritual, and of songlines and their singers. Above all this is a book about people and place: about walking as a reconnoitre inwards, and the subtle ways in which we are shaped by the landscapes through which we move. Told in Macfarlane's distinctive and celebrated voice, the book folds together natural history, cartography, geology, archaeology and literature. His tracks take him from the chalk downs of England to the bird-islands of the Scottish northwest, and from the disputed territories of Palestine to the sacred landscapes of Spain and the Himalayas. Along the way he walks stride for stride with a 5000-year-old man near Liverpool, follows the 'deadliest path in Britain', sails an open boat out into the Atlantic at night, and crosses paths with walkers of many kinds - wanderers, wayfarers, pilgrims, guides, shamans, poets, trespassers and devouts. He discovers that paths offer not just means of traversing space, but also of feeling, knowing and thinking. The old ways lead us unexpectedly to the new, and the voyage out is always a voyage inwards. 'Really do love it. He has a rare physical intelligence and affords total immersion in place, elements and the passage of time: wonderful' Antony Gormley 'A marvellous marriage of scholarship, imagination and evocation of place. I always feel exhilarated after reading Macfarlane' Penelope Lively 'Macfarlane immerses himself in regions we may have thought familiar, resurrecting them newly potent and sometimes beautifully strange. In a moving achievement, he returns our heritage to us' Colin Thubron 'Every Robert MacFarlane book offers beautiful writing, bold journeys . . . With its global reach and mysterious Sebaldian structure, this is MacFarlane's most important book yet' David Rothenberg, author of Survival of the Beautiful and Thousand Mile Song 'Luminous, possessing a seemingly paradoxical combination of the dream-like and the hyper-vigilant, The Old Ways is, as with all of Macfarlane's work, a magnificent read.Each sentence can carry astonishing discovery' Rick Bass, US novelist and nature writer 'The Old Ways confirms Robert Macfarlane's reputation as one of the most eloquent and observant of contemporary writers about nature' Scotland on Sunday 'Sublime writing . . . sets the imagination tingling . . . Macfarlane's way of writing [is] free, exploratory, rambling and haphazard but resourceful, individual, following his own whims, and laying an irresistible trail for readers to follow' Sunday Times 'Macfarlane relishes wild, as well as old, places.He writes about both beautifully . . . I love to read Macfarlane' John Sutherland, Financial Times 'Read this and it will be impossible to take an unremarkable walk again' Metro

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The Old Ways Reviews


A wonderful book: Macfarlane has a rare physical intelligence, and his writing affords total immersion in place, elements and the passage of time -- Antony Gormley A naturalist who can unfurl a sentence with the breathless ease of a master angler, a writer whose ideas and reach far transcend the physical region he explores The New York Times Book Review [Mountains of the Mind is] a distinguished book that jolted my heart. Adventurous, passionate, intensely romantic ... fizzes with insights -- Roger Deakin A new naturalist to set beside the classics in our literature Evening Standard

About Robert Macfarlane


Robert Macfarlane is the author of Mountains of the Mind, The Wild Places, The Old Ways, Landmarks, and The Lost Words, co-created with Jackie Morris. Mountains of the Mind won the Guardian First Book Award and the Somerset Maugham Award and The Wild Places won the Boardman-Tasker Award. Both books have been adapted for television by the BBC. The Lost Words won the Books Are My Bag Beautiful Book Award and the Hay Festival Book of the Year. He is a Fellow of Emmanuel College, Cambridge, and writes on environmentalism, literature and travel for publications including the Guardian, the Sunday Times and The New York Times.

Additional information

GOR004339422
The Old Ways: A Journey on Foot by Robert Macfarlane
Robert Macfarlane
Used - Very Good
Hardback
Penguin Books Ltd
2012-06-07
448
0241143810
9780241143810
N/A
Book picture is for illustrative purposes only, actual binding, cover or edition may vary.
This is a used book - there is no escaping the fact it has been read by someone else and it will show signs of wear and previous use. Overall we expect it to be in very good condition, but if you are not entirely satisfied please get in touch with us.