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Dances with the Daffodils [Kindle Edition]

Matthew Connolly
5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (4 customer reviews)

Kindle Price: $4.41


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Book Description

It is spring 1802 in London and Luke Greenhead, prodigal son of a Grasmere shepherd, has squandered away half his life. In despair he returns to his Lakeland birthplace in search of home and family. By the shores of Ullswater he stumbles upon wild daffodils at the same time as William Wordsworth and his devoted sister and muse, Dorothy (whose description of the flowers in her journal went on to inspire ‘I Wandered Lonely as a Cloud’, one of the greatest poems ever written). Luke is enchanted, not only by the daffodils but by the strange, birdlike woman in their midst. When he attempts to woo Dorothy away from her overbearing brother a battle of forbidden love and tangled loyalties ensues, into which the whole of Grasmere is drawn. Dances with the Daffodils is set against the turbulent background of the Napoleonic wars, the rigours of drystone-walling on the fells at the height of enclosure, and the heady nature worship of Early Romantic poetry. The novel embellishes the real history of the Wordsworths’ early years in Dove Cottage, drawing especially from Wordsworth’s poetry and Dorothy’s journals. Beyond being a vivid and entertaining sketch on a unique time and place in English history – complete with the poets, thinkers and common folk who inhabited it – Dances with the Daffodils is a parable about the redemptive power of nature and remembered childhood.

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Product Details

  • File Size: 1339 KB
  • Print Length: 280 pages
  • Simultaneous Device Usage: Unlimited
  • Publisher: Novel-DNA Books; 1 edition (April 12, 2013)
  • Sold by: Amazon Digital Services, Inc.
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B00CCDMC18
  • Text-to-Speech: Enabled
  • X-Ray:
  • Lending: Enabled
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #792,265 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
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Customer Reviews

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars Compelling human story in inspiring Lake District setting September 13, 2013
Format:Kindle Edition
I was captivated by this refreshingly different novel. The storyline itself is fascinating and hugely enhanced by the author s skilful and sensitive description of the various interpersonal relationships. The novel is also enriched by the author's deep knowledge of the Lake District and of course the mysteries of Dove Cottage , William and Dorothy. Luke's internal turmoils are poignantly portrayed and the rather harsh and unforgiving Lake District climate and culture
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5.0 out of 5 stars set to become a classic, hold on to your copy. August 26, 2013
Format:Kindle Edition
I have stated in other of my reviews that I never read the advertising blurb attached, usually to the first page or so, of a book as it can influence your thinking once you become, hopefully, immersed in the novel.

In this instance, not knowing what to expect from this book, I read with interest that professional reviewers were comparing it with Dickens, Balzac and Cold Comfort Farm. Who am I to disagree with professionals? Someone with my own views that happen to collide with these reviewers.

Stella Gibbons' Cold Comfort Farm is in my top ten, all time, favorite novels and I have the pleasurable task now to revisit that list to decide which book to relegate in order to add Dances With The Daffodils by Matthew Connolly. My first edition paperback will end up nowhere except on the pile of books that I find most precious, on my bedside table.

So, not Dickens, not Balzac, not Cold Comfort -So who or what. There was a period in my life, years ago, when I consumed anything and everything written by Thomas Hardy. I loved the simple way that the characters in most of his novels seemed to have little or no control over their destiny. Yes, characters have free will and choice but the influence of coincidence and happenstance far outweighs any choices they make. These are simple folk, shepherds and milk maids, ruled over by a supposedly more intelligent class. So it is also with Dances With Daffodils.

Luke's return to the Lake District coincides with changes in the thought patterns of Dorothy Wordsworth, who we are told is a fictional character with a poet brother William!! That is all you need to know before dipping into and consuming this novel.

Coincidence and chance moving the novel on? What about " he threw it to the ground.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Historical fiction August 9, 2013
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
This is set in a period close enough to modern times but where social mores and ideas are quite different. Writing is lucid and really transports one into the era.
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5.0 out of 5 stars This book should win some prizes June 19, 2013
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
I am not a book critic and don't know anything at all about literary criticism, but my reaction to this writer and his writing is "This is something special" and I hope the book gets recognition. I love daffodils so I was intrigued when I learned about this novel set in the time and place of the poet William Wordsworth and his sister Dorothy, also a talented writer. It's not disappointing - for its story line (fictional and imaginative), its flow and the fluidity of the words, and the obvious talent of the writer, Matthew Connolly. I'm reading on the Kindle, and this week, I have been grabbing moments when I can savor a few more pages. Now I am looking forward to the weekend so I can finish the book. It's a treat to read such an immersive tale.
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