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The Limits of Enchantment

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The Limits of Enchantment Cover

 

Synopses & Reviews

Publisher Comments:

Graham Joyce tells the story of two extraordinary women — one who was born ahead of her time, the other whose coming-of-age coincided with a time of great change.

England, 1966: Everything Fern Cullen knows she's learned from Mammy — and none of it's conventional. Taught midwifery at an early age, Fern becomes Mammy's trusted assistant in a quaint rural village and learns through experience that secrets are precious, passion is dangerous, and people should mind their own business.

But when one of Mammy's patients allegedly dies from an induced abortion, the town rallies against her. As Fern struggles to save Mammy's good name, she finds communion with a bunch of hippies living at a nearby estate...where she uncovers a legacy spotted with magic — one that transforms her forever.

A tale of alchemy and tragedy, magic and truth, Joyce's The Limits of Enchantment is a powerful blend of literature and fantasy from a master of the genre.

Review:

"Shaped by reverence for the feminine mystique and leavened with a dash of fantasy, this enthralling novel from British author, Joyce (The Facts of Life) offers a poignant appraisal of an English household steeped in folk traditions and its uneasy transition to contemporary times. Although it's 1966, Mammy Cullen, a beloved midwife in rural Hallaton, still dispenses a kind of herbal medicine that women have practiced since time immemorial. But times are changing and prejudices are building. When one of her remedies appears to kill a patient, the locals turn on Mammy. Her practice falls to Fern, her adopted daughter and apprentice, who soon finds herself confronting contemporary reality in several forms: Arthur, an amorous biker with marriage on his mind; an intrusive commune of feckless hippies who settle next door; and a devious landlord who schemes to evict her from her cottage. Fern's dilemma over whether to pack it all in under these pressures or contrive ways to continue with hedgerow medicine invests the tale with both pathos and humor. Joyce tackled some of this story's themes in his 1992 debut, Dark Sister, but his treatment here is more seasoned and sensitive. Likewise, his ability to write convincingly from a female point of view only improves, and Fern is one of his best realized characters to date. This novel's old-fashioned sense of values and heartwarming depiction of customs of home and community are sure to charm fans and new readers alike. Agent, Chris Lotts. (Feb. 22) Forecast: While of the same quality as The Facts of Life, which won the 2003 World Fantasy Award, this literary fantasy is unlikely to receive the same 'best novel' genre nominations because it's too close to mainstream." Publishers Weekly (Copyright Reed Business Information, Inc.)

Review:

"This is an uncommonly powerful tale about knowledge and the things swept aside in the rush to the future. Thick with ominous mystery but never sacrificing its characters' integrity in deference to atmosphere or plot." Kirkus Reviews

Review:

"Joyce's tale is a coming-of-age novel, a fantasy, and a romance filled with charm and enacted by intriguing characters who should appeal to a wide variety of readers." Booklist

Review:

"Joyce is brilliant in his use of Fern's village as a metaphor for a world that is moving faster than it can cope with....But more important is the author's ability to delve deeply into the human soul and examine it with surgical precision, while keeping its magic alive." Rocky Mountain News

Review:

"Readers on both sides of the great genre divide would do well to peer into this one....This is a strange little novel, full of ideas that are sometimes deep, sometimes vague....But the story is thoroughly charming, in the old and modern senses of that word..." Ron Charles, The Christian Science Monitor

Review:

"Add in a delightful cast of characters with all their faults and foibles and a perfect sense timing with the story pace, and The Limits of Enchantment shapes up into a hugely enjoyable experience." Sandy Auden, SFSite.com

Review:

"The Limits of Enchantment is another fine book by a writer whose own gift for enchantment has yet to display any limits." Strange Horizons

Synopsis:

Graham Joyce

tells the story of two extraordinary women — one who was born ahead of her time, the other whose coming-of-age coincided with a time of great change.

The Limits of Enchantment

England, 1966: Everything Fern Cullen knows she's learned from Mammy — and none of it's conventional. Taught midwifery at an early age, Fern becomes Mammy's trusted assistant in a quaint rural village and learns through experience that secrets are precious, passion is dangerous, and people should mind their own business.

But when one of Mammy's patients allegedly dies from an induced abortion, the town rallies against her. As Fern struggles to save Mammy's good name, she finds communion with a bunch of hippies living at a nearby estate...where she uncovers a legacy spotted with magic — one that transforms her forever.

A tale of alchemy and tragedy, magic and truth, Joyce's The Limits of Enchantment is a powerful blend of literature and fantasy from a master of the genre.

About the Author

Graham Joyce is an English writer of speculative fiction. He won the World Fantasy Award for The Facts of Life, which is set in his native Coventry. His other books include Indigo, The Tooth Fairy, Smoking Poppy, and Dark Sister.

Product Details

ISBN:
9780743463454
Publisher:
Washington Square Press
Subject:
General
Author:
Joyce, Graham
Subject:
Beat generation
Subject:
Young women
Subject:
General Fiction
Subject:
Domestic fiction
Subject:
Occult fiction
Subject:
Literature-A to Z
Copyright:
Edition Description:
B102
Publication Date:
November 2005
Binding:
TRADE PAPER
Grade Level:
General/trade
Language:
English
Pages:
288
Dimensions:
8.25 x 5.31 in 13.265 oz

Related Subjects

Fiction and Poetry » Literature » A to Z
Fiction and Poetry » Science Fiction and Fantasy » A to Z
Health and Self-Help » Health and Medicine » General
Health and Self-Help » Health and Medicine » General Medicine
Humanities » Philosophy » General

The Limits of Enchantment
0 stars - 0 reviews
$ In Stock
Product details 288 pages Washington Square Press - English 9780743463454 Reviews:
"Publishers Weekly Review" by , "Shaped by reverence for the feminine mystique and leavened with a dash of fantasy, this enthralling novel from British author, Joyce (The Facts of Life) offers a poignant appraisal of an English household steeped in folk traditions and its uneasy transition to contemporary times. Although it's 1966, Mammy Cullen, a beloved midwife in rural Hallaton, still dispenses a kind of herbal medicine that women have practiced since time immemorial. But times are changing and prejudices are building. When one of her remedies appears to kill a patient, the locals turn on Mammy. Her practice falls to Fern, her adopted daughter and apprentice, who soon finds herself confronting contemporary reality in several forms: Arthur, an amorous biker with marriage on his mind; an intrusive commune of feckless hippies who settle next door; and a devious landlord who schemes to evict her from her cottage. Fern's dilemma over whether to pack it all in under these pressures or contrive ways to continue with hedgerow medicine invests the tale with both pathos and humor. Joyce tackled some of this story's themes in his 1992 debut, Dark Sister, but his treatment here is more seasoned and sensitive. Likewise, his ability to write convincingly from a female point of view only improves, and Fern is one of his best realized characters to date. This novel's old-fashioned sense of values and heartwarming depiction of customs of home and community are sure to charm fans and new readers alike. Agent, Chris Lotts. (Feb. 22) Forecast: While of the same quality as The Facts of Life, which won the 2003 World Fantasy Award, this literary fantasy is unlikely to receive the same 'best novel' genre nominations because it's too close to mainstream." Publishers Weekly (Copyright Reed Business Information, Inc.)
"Review" by , "This is an uncommonly powerful tale about knowledge and the things swept aside in the rush to the future. Thick with ominous mystery but never sacrificing its characters' integrity in deference to atmosphere or plot."
"Review" by , "Joyce's tale is a coming-of-age novel, a fantasy, and a romance filled with charm and enacted by intriguing characters who should appeal to a wide variety of readers."
"Review" by , "Joyce is brilliant in his use of Fern's village as a metaphor for a world that is moving faster than it can cope with....But more important is the author's ability to delve deeply into the human soul and examine it with surgical precision, while keeping its magic alive."
"Review" by , "Readers on both sides of the great genre divide would do well to peer into this one....This is a strange little novel, full of ideas that are sometimes deep, sometimes vague....But the story is thoroughly charming, in the old and modern senses of that word..."
"Review" by , "Add in a delightful cast of characters with all their faults and foibles and a perfect sense timing with the story pace, and The Limits of Enchantment shapes up into a hugely enjoyable experience."
"Review" by , "The Limits of Enchantment is another fine book by a writer whose own gift for enchantment has yet to display any limits."
"Synopsis" by , Graham Joyce

tells the story of two extraordinary women — one who was born ahead of her time, the other whose coming-of-age coincided with a time of great change.

The Limits of Enchantment

England, 1966: Everything Fern Cullen knows she's learned from Mammy — and none of it's conventional. Taught midwifery at an early age, Fern becomes Mammy's trusted assistant in a quaint rural village and learns through experience that secrets are precious, passion is dangerous, and people should mind their own business.

But when one of Mammy's patients allegedly dies from an induced abortion, the town rallies against her. As Fern struggles to save Mammy's good name, she finds communion with a bunch of hippies living at a nearby estate...where she uncovers a legacy spotted with magic — one that transforms her forever.

A tale of alchemy and tragedy, magic and truth, Joyce's The Limits of Enchantment is a powerful blend of literature and fantasy from a master of the genre.

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