How Green Was My Valley (Penguin Twentieth Century Classics S.)
Huw Morgan, about to leave home forever, reminisces about the golden days of his youth, when South Wales still prospered and coal dust had not yet blackened the valley. Llewellyn's characters fight, love, laugh, and cry, creating an indelible portrait of a people.
This is easily my most favorite and special book. It's something so beautiful that my heart aches to dwell on it. It aches because I long to be apart of something so perfect and wish for such beauty in everything I experience.
I feel I belong in that small Welsh mining town, that I should be spending all of my time supporting my family and town, singing with friends, learning voraciously, worshiping God intelligently and recogniz...more
I found myself lamenting the loss of the time Huw Morgan speaks of, cursing the slag heaps, mourning Ivor's death, and watched in horror as communism clashed wi...more
Page 88, "O, blackberry tart, with berries as big as your thumb, purple and black, and thick with juice, and a crust to endear them that will go to cream in your mouth, and both passing down with...more
This was the second time I read this (the first being when I was a young teenager.) I'll be reading it again throughout my life, I'm sure. I'm convinced a teenager's brain is made of fluff, for I remember very little from that first reading. It was as if I hadn't read it before, almost. This seco...more
The coming-of-age narrator, Huw, so well paints a picture of his everyday struggles in a rapidly-industrialized Wales that you can literally hear the birds and smell the blackberry pie. Of course many authors are good at description...more
For me, this book's beauty read sharply, showing strength in simple naturalistic description and dialogue. Its characters, who I found deeply relatable, are rare enough, in literature and in life. I already miss the...more
As for the narrator, I found him to be somewhat ambiguous. He seems to have a great understanding of many things, yet makes some extremely poor choices through out the book. I rea...more
On a side note, this novel did have a film adaptation.
With that intro out of the way, let me explain my love. The story is narrated by an individual, Huw Morgan, who reflects upon his childhood days spent in a small Welsh town at around the time just prior and turning into the industrial revolution. In the town, which naturally is in its own...more
How Green Was My Valley is unforgettable because of the way it uses language to describe circumstances and human relationships. "Uses" isn't quite right, more like transforms language to expose the truth in every day occurrences. Sounds a bit over the top I guess, but I was enthralled with the way that Llewellyn was able to describe what would...more
Perhaps the thing I loved best about reading this book was L...more
There's some very dark moments, too. And now I have reached the end, I must say I really liked it.
I have to put in this quote:
There is strange to walk in a town. Something is strange in the faces of people who live all their lives in a town. For their lives are full of the clock and their eyes are blind with seein...more
On the one hand I recognize that it is beautifully written. Possibly the most beautifully written prose I've ever read. But beautiful prose isn't really that exciting to me. It kept putting me to sleep and it was taking FOREVER to get through the book. Finally after almost a month when I was at around page 300 I decided to start skipping "the irrelevant stuff." My husband asked how I knew I wasn't missing anything important. I told him I'...more
It’s hard to know exactly what I should write regarding my feelings on this book. It’s one of my favorites and that part I can easily say, but why it’s one of my favorites is another matter. I reach the end of it and I can just feel my chest aching for Huw Morgan. I think it’s not so much because of the death and loss that seem to surround him throughout the book, b...more
The story takes place at a time when this somewhat primiti...more
As a history lesson, this book is great. Set in a Welsh mining town in the late 1800's, this novel provides an interesting look into Welsh culture, and the difficult lives of miners in that time. This was in the very earl...more
I loved how the family came t...more
The story discusses in depth the difficulties the coal miners face, particularly with low wages. Some of the younger men want to form a union, while the narrator's father urges caution and...more
A note about some of the negative reviews I have seen. They baffle me! They talk about how the characters solve all their problems with violence, etc. so they give it one star. Okay, see, I agree that solving all their problems by violence deserves a star, or l...more
Some one once said, after seeing the beauty of Alaska, that he wished he had seen it as an old man, for it's magnificent beauty would surely spoil any scene he would ever see after. That's how I feel about this lovely, beautiful, wonderful book. I am afraid nothing I read will ever make me feel like this. I feel...more
The characters are unforgettable, especially Huw, his father and the minister Mr Gryffydd, but every character leaves their mark on you except the youngest members...more
Llewellyn was born of Welsh parents in Hendon, north London in 1906. Only after his death was it discovered that his claim that he was born in St. Davids, West Wales was false, though of course he was of Welsh blood.
Several of his novels were dealt with a Welsh theme, the best-known being How Green Was My Va...more