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Lud-in-the-Mist (Prologue Fantasy) Kindle Edition

29 customer reviews

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Length: 288 pages Enhanced Typesetting: Enabled

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Editorial Reviews

About the Author

Hope Mirrlees (1887–1978) was an English writer and scholar. She was a friend of Virginia Woolf and T.S. Eliot, part of the Bloomsbury literary circle (Mirrlees's poem Paris has been called by some critics an undiscovered treasure of modernism), and a close friend and collaborator of the great classical scholar Jane Ellen Harrison. She and Harrison divided their time between England and France. She became fluent in French and Russian, and later studied Spanish. Lud-in-the-Mist is her best-known work of fantasy.


Product Details

  • File Size: 745 KB
  • Print Length: 288 pages
  • Publisher: Prologue Books; Reprint edition (December 18, 2012)
  • Publication Date: December 18, 2012
  • Sold by: Amazon Digital Services, Inc.
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B007ZT1KV2
  • Text-to-Speech: Enabled
  • X-Ray:
  • Word Wise: Not Enabled
  • Lending: Not Enabled
  • Enhanced Typesetting: Enabled
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #98,509 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

46 of 49 people found the following review helpful By Ian M. Slater on July 13, 2012
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
Back in August 2004, when I was preparing a review of "Lud-in-the-Mist" for Amazon, the very good news was that the book was finally back in print. In July 2012, the good news is that now it is also available in digital format from Prologue Books (across several platforms, including Nook and iBook as well as Kindle).

For me, this means having it available on a smartphone, whenever and wherever I want to read it. Yes, along with hundreds of other books (I'm afraid to count), but this is one of those that I like to read at odd moments.

"Lud-in-the-Mist" was first published, to both some incomprehension and some critical success, in the 1920s. It opens with, as an epigraph, a reflection by the author's teacher, friend and sometime-collaborator, the classicist Jane Ellen Harrison, on the otherwise inexpressible longings revealed in myth.

The setting is the land of Dorimare, which is certainly not England, but is something like it; just as the port city of Lud-in-the-Mist on the river Dawl is not exactly the port city of London-in-the-Fog on the river Thames. For one thing, England never had such remarkably *interesting* neighbors as does Dorimare -- at least not across any merely geographical border. Not that the solid, and increasingly stolid, burghers of Lud have any intention of acknowledging Fairyland or its inhabitants.

That nonsense was all done away with in a glorious (but not The Glorious) Revolution, by their brave, revered, but (now) embarrassingly enthusiastic, ancestors, who wiped out the old aristocracy, and chased the last Duke, and the Priests, off to -- well somewhere over the border. These days, the only connection allowed with -- that other place -- is the underground source of the River Dapple, which can hardly be avoided.
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20 of 21 people found the following review helpful By EA Solinas HALL OF FAMETOP 500 REVIEWERVINE VOICE on July 5, 2012
Format: Kindle Edition
The oddness of this story can be detected just by checking out the main character. Most fantasy heroes are not round, stodgy, middle-aged men who are respected pillars of the community.

But Hope Mirrlees' enchanting fantasy "Lud-in-the-Mist" defies many such fantasy cliches, written as if "The Hobbit" had been spun up by Lord Dunsany. It's a sweet pastoral story that slowly blossoms out into a very unique story -- there's a little murder mystery, an amusing village of hobbity people, and a quicksilver dream of beautiful fairyland and otherworldly danger.

Fairy is forbidden in the town of Lud -- not just fairy creatures and their exquisite fruit, but mentions of them, the dead who walk with them, and the Duke Aubrey who left with them.

But all his life, the steadfastly dull Mayor Nathaniel Chanticleer has a lingering longing/fear for a strangely magical musical note. Despite all this, life remains boring and rather pleasant -- until Chanticleer's son Ranulph begins acting strangely, claiming that he's eaten fairy fruit.

After Chanticleer sends his son off to a farm for a vacation, the teenage girls at Miss Primrose's Crabapple Academy suddenly seem to go pleasantly nuts, and then race off into the hills. Life seems to seep out of the old town,and Nathaniel must connect the present crises to a past conspiracy, all of which hinges on Fairyland, fairy fruit, and the sinister doctor Endymion Leer. The journey to discover the truth will take him out of the everyday world -- and change him forever.

Haunting music, mad dancing, and ethereal meadows filled with fairy people and strange flowers. All through "Lud-in-the-Mist," there's the underlying feeling that there's a frightening, exquisite world that is barely separated from ours.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful By Cywydd on April 9, 2013
Format: Kindle Edition
Lyrically written and an amazing story. I read this book at least once a year. I highly recommend this book.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful By gail youll on April 3, 2013
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
Neil Gaiman highly recommended this book and I am so glad that he had. It is one of my favourites and I love it.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By Amazon Customer on January 26, 2013
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
If you love J R R Tolkien, if you reread "The Last Unicorn" and "The Face in the Frost" just for the words and to watch the author's weaving of them, then you will love this book. It is a painting of us that captures the poignant beauty of the everyday as we puzzle through our lives against the backdrop of the rich mysteries all around us. I read this book the first time almost 40 years ago and images and phrases from it come to mind still. It is one of those rare books that can change the way you look at the world.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By Amazon Customer on June 20, 2013
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
It took me a while to warm up to this book. It unfolds in a rather leisurely pace and uses language that I am not used to. I did learn some new words, such as cockchafer* and velleity and so on. (Ebooks are handy because any unfamiliar word can be instantly looked up in a dictionary.)

As everyone knows, this novel has been praised highly by people like Neil Gaiman and Tim Powers, and its interactions between the country of Dorimare and Fairyland (or the land of the dead) can be interpreted in many ways. (I was mostly thinking in terms of order vs. chaos or rules vs. creativity, but obviously it could be read as pro-drug message or a Freudian superego/id thing, or materialism versus spirituality if you like.) I wondered if JK Rowling was influenced by it in the style she named her characters in the Harry Potter series, or if this naming style is just a part of a longer tradition.

This Kindle edition has some oddities that I think are OCR/scanning errors slipped through proofreading. One sentence reads: "A house with old furniture has no need of guests to be haunted." Surely it should be ghosts, not guests. Later on there is a phrase "who had been present during the last hours of the farmer" that is repeated in the same sentence for no reason. And yet later there is a reference to "Mistress Ivy's little ship," where "ship" should certainly be "shop."

*Cockchafer, I learned, is a beetle I already knew by its Finnish name (which is turilas). Then again, there is another beetle whose Finnish name translates literally as "priestkiller." (Which has nothing to do with this book, really.)
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