“He walked out in the gray light and stood and he saw for a brief moment the absolute truth of the world. The cold relentless circling of the intestate earth. Darkness implacable. The blind dogs of the sun in their running. The crushing black vacuum of the universe. And somewhere two hunted animals trembling like ground-foxes in their cover. Borrowed time and borrowed world and borrowed eyes with which to sorrow it.” ― Cormac McCarthy, The Road
It started simply enough. A sheep worrier – not common, and yet not uncommon in the Welsh countryside. The shadow of a black dog, lost or gone rogue, who endangers the sheep – the life’s blood of the Shropshire farmer. Nerys and Bryn’s son, John, has been worried. And he has been dreaming. Dreaming of the black dog. And now? Now, John hasn’t come home.
When Aidan Morgan, neighbor and family friend, goes out to search for John, he thinks that John is simply out searching for the worrier. But when he finds John’s Border Collie, Nan, tied to a gate and hysterical, he knows things are wrong. Very, very wrong. And what he finds is more horrible than he could have possibly believed.
“Black it was. Black as coal and big yellow eyes. I tell you it looked at me like it was weighing me up, judging me. Right weird it was.”
Kim Gravell has a lovely writing voice, full of the rich tones of the Welsh, the lands and the stories abundant with myth and magic .Lyrical names – Cadair Cawr, the giant’s chair, Aberystwyth, home of Elizabeth, Aidan’s sister. Aidan’s own beloved Cwm Broch. Beautiful given names, Alwyn and Gwynyfa, Beris and Eldritch. Simply reading the words pulls you into the story, and soon you are walking over the bracken covered hills, amongst the ancient stones.-
The story line is laid out in the blurb, which is sort of a downer as I feel it gives a bit too much away, but I am still happy that I finally found the book in my huge collection and was able to read it. Yes, I was supposed to get the review done quite some time ago – life happened, but I have read it – and will read it again. It is lyrical, as I stated before, and that always draws me in. The characters are well written, the story is a good start, and the landscape of mid-Wales drew me in until I could nearly smell the air. Overall, this is a lovely book filled with myth and mystery, terror and magic. Well worth your valuable reading time.
I am sure I owe Kim Gravell an apology. I seem to have had this book for quite a while, and no doubt received it from her for review, as it is a proof version. My apologies, and I thank you for providing The Demon’s Call to me for review. I hope late is better than never!