The Magpie Anthology

Ghost Wall : Sarah Moss

There are some books that reach out and grab you and this is one of those. Chosen as our January book club suggestion this novel of merely 149 pages, Ghost Wall, doesn’t let you out of its grip. The story of Sylvie, her overbearing amateur historian father and beaten down mother who are living for two weeks as though they are ancient Britons in the Iron Age resonates with modern themes. They have joined a professor and his students and are foraging and hunting but by mixing with the students, Silvie begins to see, hear, and imagine another kind of life, one that might include going to university, travelling beyond England, choosing her own clothes and food, speaking her mind.

The story reaches its inevitable terrible ending and show us that nothing really has changed since these ancient times regarding some men’s attitudes towards women – the ultimate hunter, gatherers. With this in mind, I dug out a piece I wrote some years ago when I worked at the women’s refuge on the Isle of Wight and which was collated from many women’s experiences of domestic abuse and learned behaviours which you can read HERE

You can buy Ghost Wall HERE

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