Spell Of Winter

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Spell Of Winter

by Helen Dunmore

Penguin Uk | December 1, 1998 | Trade Paperback

Spell Of Winter is rated 4 out of 5 by 1.
Bestselling author Helen Dunmore''s third novel, A Spell of Winter won the 1996 Orange Prize. Catherine and her brother, Rob, don''t know why they have been abandoned by their parents. Incarcerated in the enormous country house of their grandfather - ''the man from nowhere'' - they create a refuge against their family''s dark secrets, and against the outside world as it moves towards the First World War. As time passes, their sibling love deepens and crosses into forbidden territory. But they are not as alone in the house as they believe . . . ''A marvellous novel about forbidden passions and the terrible consequences of thwarted love. Dunmore is one of the finest English writers'' Daily Mail ''A hugely involving story which often stops you in your tracks with the beauty of its writing'' Observer ''An electrifying and original talent, a writer whose style is characterized by a lyrical, dreamy intensity'' Guardian Helen Dunmore has published eleven novels with Penguin: Zennor in Darkness , which won the McKitterick Prize; Burning Bright; A Spell of Winter, which won the Orange Prize; Talking to the Dead ; Your Blue-Eyed Boy; With Your Crooked Heart; The Siege, which was shortlisted for the 2001 Whitbread Novel of the Year Award and for the Orange Prize for Fiction 2002; Mourning Ruby; House of Orphan; Counting the Stars and The Betrayal, which was longlisted for the Man Booker Prize 2010. She is also a poet, children''s novelist and short-story writer.

Format: Trade Paperback

Dimensions: 320 pages, 7.75 × 5.15 × 0.64 in

Published: December 1, 1998

Publisher: Penguin Uk

Language: English

The following ISBNs are associated with this title:

ISBN - 10: 0140248811

ISBN - 13: 9780140248814

Found in: Fiction and Literature

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Reviews

Rated 4 out of 5 by from beautifully written novel I read Helen Dunmore’s novel With Your Crooked Heart many years ago and I’ve been a fan ever since. Dunmore’s prose is like poetry, every sentence a perfect balance between beauty and truth. Winner of the 1996 Orange Prize, A Spell of Winter is the fourth novel I’ve read by her, and I have also read her collection of short stories, Ice Cream. A Spell of Winter concerns the lives of Cathy and Rob, siblings who live in a crumbling manor house in England. Their guardian is their maternal grandfather, “the man from nowhere”, and through Cathy’s eyes he is seen as stern and unsympathetic. When A Spell of Winter begins Rob is nine and Cathy, our narrator, is seven. They are on their way, with Miss Gallagher, to visit their father in the sanatorium. It’s a traumatic visit – and also marks the last time the children will see their father alive. The children’s lives are isolated and insular. Cathy remarks: " I look at the house, still and breathless in the frost. I have got what I wanted. A spell of winter hangs over it, and everyone has gone." Perhaps it is isolation, perhaps it is abandonment, but eventually Cathy and Rob cross the line. Their story reminds me of another pair of British siblings who become lovers: Cathy and Christopher, protagonists of Carolyn Slaughter’s magnificent novel Relations (also published as The Story of the Weasel.) With a huge house to creep around in and no one to pay attention to them except Kate, their trusted servant, Cathy and Rob fall into a strange spell of their own. A Spell of Winter has many of the gothic hallmarks: the gloomy dwelling, a sense of mystery, a distressed heroine. As long as Cathy and Rob are isolated, they manage to sustain their relationship. But like winter, it can’t last. Eventually, the real world seeps in in ways both expected and unexpected. I loved A Spell of Winter. It’s not a ‘love’ story in the way Relations is. I wasn’t rooting for Cathy and Rob. I was rooting for Cathy. She is abandoned many times during her life, but her resilient nature, whether through necessity or tenacity, keeps her going. The language is beautiful. And the story despite its dark subject matter, is brimming with the promise of spring.
Date published: 2012-10-03

– More About This Product –

Spell Of Winter

by Helen Dunmore

Format: Trade Paperback

Dimensions: 320 pages, 7.75 × 5.15 × 0.64 in

Published: December 1, 1998

Publisher: Penguin Uk

Language: English

The following ISBNs are associated with this title:

ISBN - 10: 0140248811

ISBN - 13: 9780140248814

From the Publisher

Bestselling author Helen Dunmore''s third novel, A Spell of Winter won the 1996 Orange Prize. Catherine and her brother, Rob, don''t know why they have been abandoned by their parents. Incarcerated in the enormous country house of their grandfather - ''the man from nowhere'' - they create a refuge against their family''s dark secrets, and against the outside world as it moves towards the First World War. As time passes, their sibling love deepens and crosses into forbidden territory. But they are not as alone in the house as they believe . . . ''A marvellous novel about forbidden passions and the terrible consequences of thwarted love. Dunmore is one of the finest English writers'' Daily Mail ''A hugely involving story which often stops you in your tracks with the beauty of its writing'' Observer ''An electrifying and original talent, a writer whose style is characterized by a lyrical, dreamy intensity'' Guardian Helen Dunmore has published eleven novels with Penguin: Zennor in Darkness , which won the McKitterick Prize; Burning Bright; A Spell of Winter, which won the Orange Prize; Talking to the Dead ; Your Blue-Eyed Boy; With Your Crooked Heart; The Siege, which was shortlisted for the 2001 Whitbread Novel of the Year Award and for the Orange Prize for Fiction 2002; Mourning Ruby; House of Orphan; Counting the Stars and The Betrayal, which was longlisted for the Man Booker Prize 2010. She is also a poet, children''s novelist and short-story writer.

From the Jacket

Catherine and her brother, Rob, do not know why they have been abandoned by their parents. In the house of their grandfather, ’the man from nowhere’, they make a passionate refuge for themselves against the terror of family secrets. While the world outside moves to the brink of war, their sibling love becomes fraught with dangers. But as Catherine fights free of the past, the spell of winter that has held her in its grasp begins to break.

About the Author

Helen Dunmore has published nine novels with Penguin: Zennor in Darkness, which won the McKitterick Prize; Burning Bright; A Spell of Winter, which won the Orange Prize; Talking to the Dead; Your Blue-Eyed Boy; With Your Crooked Heart; The Siege, which was shortlisted for the 2001 Whitbread Novel of the Year Award and for the Orange Prize for Fiction 2002; Mourning Ruby and House of Orphans. She is also a poet, children’s novelist and short-story writer.

From Our Editors

At the heart of Helen Dunmore’s well-crafted and captivating tale of the bonds of sibling love, are Catherine and Rob, a brother and sister abandoned by their parents and forced to seek refuge at their Grandfather’s house. While their new home offers refuge from the dangers of war, it can’t shield the siblings from the terror of family secrets.