Strange things are happening at Hexwood Farm, not far from London.
On another world entirely, a harassed Sector Controller gets a letter from a maintenance team apparently trapped in Hexwood. A small boy called Hume encounters a robot and a dragon there. Ann Stavely, lying in bed with a virus in her nearby home, watches person after person disappear into the old farmhouse and not come out again.
When she feels better, Ann decides to investigate. She goes into the wood, where she meets a tormented sorcerer called Mordion who seems to have arisen from a sleep lasting centuries. Yet Ann knows she has seen him enter the farmhouse that morning. Nothing seems to happen in the right order. Nothing quite makes sense. And things keep getting stranger and stranger until, long before the end, the strangeness has spread from Earth right out to the center of the galaxy.
Here is another intriguing novel by a master of the unexpected.
"synopsis" may belong to another edition of this title.
Diana Wynne Jones was raised in the village of Thaxted, in Essex, England. She has been a compulsive storyteller for as long as she can remember enjoying most ardently those tales dealing with witches, hobgoblins, and the like. Ms. Jones lives in Bristol, England, with her husband, a professor of English at Bristol University. They have three sons and two granddaughters. In Her Own Words...
"I decided to be a writer at the age of eight, but I did not receive any encouragement in this ambition until thirty years later. I think this ambition was fired-or perhaps exacerbated is a better word-by early marginal contacts with the Great, when we were evacuated to the English Lakes during the war. The house we were in had belonged to Ruskin's secretary and had also been the home of the children in the books of Arthur Ransome. One day, finding I had no paper to draw on, I stole from the attic a stack of exquisite flower-drawings, almost certainly by Ruskin himself, and proceeded to rub them out. I was punished for this. Soon after, we children offended Arthur Ransome by making a noise on the shore beside his houseboat. He complained. So likewise did Beatrix Potter, who lived nearby. It struck me then that the Great were remarkably touchy and unpleasant (even if, in Ruskin's case, it was posthumous), and I thought I would like to be the same, without the unpleasantness.
"I started writing children's books when we moved to a village in Essex where there were almost no books. The main activities there were hand-weaving, hand-making pottery, and singing madrigals, for none of which I had either taste or talent. So, in intervals between trying to haunt the church and sitting on roofs hoping to learn to fly, I wrote enormous epic adventure stories which I read to my sisters instead of the real books we did not have. This writing was stopped, though, when it was decided I must be coached to go to University. A local philosopher was engaged to teach me Greek and philosophy in exchange for a dollhouse (my family never did things normally), and I eventually got a place at Oxford.
"At this stage, despite attending lectures by J. R. R. Tolkien and C. S. Lewis, I did not expect to be writing fantasy. But that was what I started to write when I was married and had children of my own. It was what they liked best. But small children do not allow you the use of your brain. They used to jump on my feet to stop me thinking. And I had not realized how much I needed to teach myself about writing. I took years to learn, and it was not until my youngest child began school that I was able to produce a book which a publisher did not send straight back.
"As soon as my books began to be published, they started coming true. Fantastic things that I thought I had made up keep happening to me. The most spectacular was Drowned Ammet. The first time I went on a boat after writing that book, an island grew up out of the sea and stranded us. This sort of thing, combined with the fact that I have a travel jinx, means that my life is never dull."
Diana Wynne Jones is the author of many highly praised books for young readers, as well as three plays for children and a novel for adults. She lives in Bristol, England, with her husband, a professor of English at Bristol University. They have three sons.From Kirkus Reviews:
In Jones's latest multilayered fantasy, Earth--unbeknownst to its inhabitants--is a minor planet manipulated from distant Homeworld by an oligarchy of five Reigners, who exploit the entire galaxy for economic gain. Earth's precious flint is vital to their technology; when a British hacker creates a disturbance by using ``one of those old machines'' to create a football team of real historical personages, the Reigners are drawn, one by one, to the scene. There, greengrocer's daughter Ann Stavely has become involved with the extraordinary characters appearing in the wood: Mordion, with skull-like features but a beatific smile, has emerged from a long entrapment; Hume--who springs from the earth where Mordion's blood mingles with Ann's after a minor injury--is a different age each time she meets him. Entering the present-day wood, the Reigners are absorbed into Arthurian Britain, where each persona (including dragons and a number of robots and machines) has several intricately linked identities- -past, present, extraterrestrial, mythological. For those who enjoy the intellectual exercise of sorting them out, and of pondering whether God is in the machine or Christ is an ironic parallel to the Reigners' Servant (who bears the guilt of crimes he's forced to commit), the game offered here is unsurpassed; meanwhile, the grappling of the heroes-in-disguise with the avaricious (and chillingly human) Reigners and the emergence of their kindlier potential successors makes an elaborate, fascinating, and suberbly crafted adventure. (Fiction. 12+) -- Copyright ©1994, Kirkus Associates, LP. All rights reserved.
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Book Description Greenwillow, 2002. Hardcover. Book Condition: New. Bookseller Inventory # P11006029888X
Book Description Greenwillow. Hardcover. Book Condition: New. 006029888X New Condition. Bookseller Inventory # NEW6.0925807
Book Description Greenwillow, 2002. Hardcover. Book Condition: New. Bookseller Inventory # DADAX006029888X