An Ogham Wood
By Cliff Seruntine
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Where does one begin the tale of An Ogham Wood? Perhaps with the Lady Ellidurydd who was born three thousand years ago in wooded Wales and fell in love with a stag of the forest. Or perhaps the tale should begin fifteen hundred years later with Dylan O’Shee, exiled prince of a lost Irish kingdom who had the gift of finding souls. Maybe it truly begins with the vanishing of the Hundred Horsemen, for it was then a band of wandering Celtic tinkers appeared with a vision to save the fading faerie folk of the West. Aye, in any and all these places the tale could begin, and others too. For the lives of many, mortals and not, have been woven into the myth of the Ogham Wood. But let us begin it in the moment, in the last days of the Island of Manannan, with Sweyn deSauld, a man bereft of family, of hope, and even his right mind. Once upon a time, there was a sailor who had lost all he loved, and fell to doing terrible things. And then he found he was empty, and all that was left for him was the lonely sea. So there he passed the wandering days, trying to forget. But he was not forgotten. For his lost wife was from the Island, a hidden place where enchanted things still dwell in the green world. And the old witch of the Island made plots for the sailor. She called up a magic wind, and forgetfulness, and drew him into something terrible and wonderful, and far too big for a shattered man who walks the brink of madness. But ghosts and a pinch of faerie luck may yet shape the fate of Sweyn, heir to a legacy he does not want, and quite beyond his imagination. For on the Island he shall encounter Coppin, a cantankerous old codger who keeps the secrets of Dundubh Cottage. And Oak Peg, a recluse who dwells in the wood, brewing potions and making cheese. And Donald, the woodsman who broods on a terrible loss. But, most wondrously, he shall encounter Caitlin, a strange raven-haired girl who sings by night in the lonely wood, and who is said to have no soul. And over them all is the Pact, and the fate of the Island depends upon whether Sweyn can keep it. But how much hope can one hang upon a madman?
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Extracts from Reviews:
“It truly is an expertly written novel, weaving seamlessly a tapestry of many times and worlds, building towards a heart-wrenching climax befitting the mythic proportions of the tale and characters. Both suspense and real magic are tangible throughout the whole book, teasing out hidden mysteries both of the inner world of the main characters and the outer world that they inhabit. In many places it moved me to tears, indeed tissues were required for most of the last quarter of the book, brought forth through pain, heroism and the exquisite beauty and sadness of the faery realm that the author, Cliff Seruntine, captures so perfectly. The tale flows so, that it feels as though it has always been, just waiting for the right person to bring it to manifestation…” Emily Carding, Author of Faery Craft
“I absolutely adore this book. It is a rare, magical tale which weaves it’s narrative into your very being with glittering threads. An Ogham Wood is a tale of love, loss, grief, redemption, the faerie faith, the earth, the sea, and what it means to have a soul. I felt moved to write a review for this book as I feel An Ogham Wood deserves to be read and re read by many, many people. I guarantee that whilst you are reading it you will have at least ‘one foot in faerie!'” Miss Laura Daligan, Artist and Magical Teacher
“As the story unravels the fantasy element of this book begins to develop and the reader is transported into the world of the Fae through dryads, fairies, brownies, and other elemental spirits. Seruntine uses long and poetic descriptive narrative to describe the beauty of the island and its ancient woodland, and also peppers his chapters with his own poetry which helps set the scenery for the reader. This is an escapist read full of romance, fantasy, and fairies.” Katie Gerrard, Author of Seidr
“I’ve waited a long time to read this book and haven’t been disappointed as Mr Seruntine weaves a tale worthy of the bards of old, with layer upon layer of detail being tied in neatly with the current part of the story.” Merissa, Amazon Reviewer
OUT OF PRINT
Canadian mystic and author Cliff Seruntine is best known for The Lore of the Bard (2003), a study of the ancient Celtic storytellers and enchanters. Cliff, his wife Daphne, and their two daughters reside on an old Scots farmstead in the misty wooded glens of the Nova Scotia highlands. There he keep alive such skills as horse driving, and cheesemaking, and teach classes on how to live green while living well. Cliff is the author of An Ogham Wood.