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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars An American agent is trapped in a Britain which has turned against technology, August 18, 2014
"Heartsease" by Peter Dickinson is the second in the "Changes" trilogy which were published in the following order:

1) "The Weathermonger (The Changes Trilogy, Book 1)"
2) This book, "Heartsease"
3) "The Devil's Children (Changes Trilogy)."

The series has also been published as one volume. (Link: The Changes: A Trilogy).

The stories can be read in the order they were published, but I understand that the order in which they books came out does not correspond to the sequence of events, and a reader who wanted to follow the events in chronological order should probably read the first book published, "The Weathermonger," last.

The story is set in West Country England in a time which when the trilogy was published (the late 1960s) was the near future. A note by the author describes the geographical setting as being between Gloucester and Bristol, with the slight change that he put a smaller village of about 700 people in the place which in the real world is occupied by the village of Painswick. And in the story Gloucester and Bristol are dead, abandoned cities: people had moved out because in the absence of technology cities that size cannot exist.

The first novel, "The Weathermonger" describes the society which resulted after almost everyone on mainland Britain suddenly turned against all kinds of machines - not just nuclear reactors but tractors, buses, central heating, electric stoves or razors. Anyone who tries to use a machine is called a witch, and killed, usually by burning, stoning, or drowning.

"Heartsease" is set five years after the change. At the start of the book two of the children from the first story, Jonathon and Margaret, who are now fourteen, rescue a "witch" who had been stoned and left for dead.

When he has sufficiently recovered from his injuries to speak, the "witch" tells them that he is called Otto and is an American agent come to find out what has happened in Britain.

And so begins an adventure as the children try to get Otto safely home ...

This is a reasonably well-crafted, entertaining story which is aimed at children but can be read by adults. The three stories in the trilogy can be read together but each is sufficiently self-contained that they do not have to be.
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2 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Classic fantasy suitable for all ages, August 7, 1997
This review is from: HEARTSEASE (Changes Trilogy) (Hardcover)
Heartsease continues The Changes Trilogy, Margaret and Jonathan are still traped in a modern-medevil England in which the populace is irrationally afraid of technology. They must survive to find a solution to possibly restore the island to its proper form
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HEARTSEASE (Changes Trilogy)
HEARTSEASE (Changes Trilogy) by Peter Dickinson (Hardcover - May 1, 1986)
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