Friday, 26 August 2011

Stone Song by Phil van Wulwen


It took me a few pages to get used to Phil’s style – written in the first person (Ty), his own narrative sentences are somewhat economic but they are Ty’s innermost thoughts – and of course we don’t all think in grammar book English!  It wasn’t a style I’d come across before, so whilst it was unusual for me personally, this won’t necessarily be the case for all readers and I did soon settle into it comfortably.

Two young travellers meet on a plane from Canada, both coincidentally heading for Glastonbury in the UK.  Jen is a bit of tree-hugging modern day hippy, Ty is a relaxed, laid-back, take-it-as-it-comes sort of guy. Comfortable with each other, Jen appoints herself Ty’s driving companion, as he has arranged for a rental car for his onward journey.  What they hope to be a tourist circuit of the famous ancient stone monuments of the west of England turns out to be a bizarre adventure which includes an escaped elephant, a fluorescent pink ferret, a techno-nerd, a dead goat, a dead body and the MI5;  all of this is mixed with inner-cleansing chanting and ‘omming’, alfafa salads and green tea;  in short, a delightful mix of bizarre, comedy, romance and technological wizardry.  Not a long book, it’s enjoyable and entertaining, just right for a long flight or quick holiday read.

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