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really liked it 4.00  ·  Rating Details  ·  727 Ratings  ·  145 Reviews
When Mike and Gally move to a new cottage in Somerset, it’s to make a new start. But the relationship comes under strain when Gally forms an increasingly close attachment to an old countryman, Ferney, who seems to know everything about her.

What is it that draws them together? Reluctantly at first, then with more urgency as he feels time slipping away, Ferney compels Gally
Hardcover, 320 pages
Published January 5th 1998 by Harper Collins Publishers Stock Account (first published 1998)
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Community Reviews

(showing 1-30 of 1,340)
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Ian Mapp
Dec 15, 2015 Ian Mapp rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Could be contender for book of the year. Already.

I loved this book and couldnt wait to open it and read it. There are a couple of themes and passages within the book that are attitude changing.

Essentially its a lover story - and although there are parallels to Time Travellers wife, this came first. It also reminded me a little of last house on the strand, with its references to changing landscapes.

We have a newly wed couple - Gally and Mike. We know Gally has problems sleeping but Mike is a pati
Jul 23, 2010 Hannah rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Reincarnation fans
Ferney has lived a long time. A very long time. Over 1,500 years.

At least his soul has.

This novel by James Long makes the case for reincarnation, love, time and history. As the book begins, the year is 1990, and 26 year old Gally and her husband Mike take a detour to avoid a car crash, and find themselves in the English village of Penselwood, in front of a delapidated house by the name of Bagstone Cottage. Gally, who has been troubled by nightmares for as long as she can remember, feels a sense
Feb 02, 2010 Kara rated it it was amazing
One of my top ten all time favorites! This story will stay with you long after you finish reading the book.
Linda Rollins
Feb 12, 2012 Linda Rollins rated it it was amazing
An extraordinary story from start to finish.

A young woman, with a variety of neuroses, and her husband buy an old, tumble-down cottage because it 'feels right' to her. Along comes an old man named 'Ferney' with a very strange story to tell. The long-suffering husband doesn't get along with Ferney and vice-versa; we find out why as the story moves us along.

The circumstances of this love story could have made for some very uncomfortable reading, but it was written with such delicacy and a real fe
Aug 17, 2012 Sara rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
It is great to see Ferney being re-released in the UK. HarperCollins published this book not long before I began working there back in 2000, and I know the publisher felt that it should have had more attention than it got. I read it over ten years ago, and the ending is still particularly vivid. The love story is absolutely original – a forerunner to The Time Traveller’s Wife – with a beautiful English countryside setting. I won’t give any more away, but if you can find it, read it!

NB: There’s a
Aug 29, 2012 Angela rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I just absolutely loved this book in every way! I only read it because I was lucky enough to win the sequel on the Goodreads giveaways, and I'm so glad that I did.
It is described as a romance that spans 1300 years with the two main characters being destined to be re-born again and again. However this is no mushy, lovey-dovey romance, but what I would describe as a well written love story.
I can definitely recommend reading this book - it's one that I will definitely read again and probably again
Aug 04, 2012 Vicky rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Lovely book that gives a great view of the English country side and village life. I love stories that mix times and throw in history.

From the Publisher
It was an accidental detour inspired by one of Gally's frequent panic attacks that sent her husband Mike down a twisting lane to the abandoned cottage. Yet from the moment she saw it, Gally felt a peace she hadn't known in years and the inexplicable sense that she had finally come home. And so she had. For as Mike worries and fusses over their ne
Aug 29, 2012 Nisareen rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Fifteen hundred years earlier...
Two soulmates make a pact with the aid of a magical stone to not let even death itself, seperate them. However, fate and tragedy have often conspired against them despite their many reincarnations.

Present Day...
It was an accidental detour inspired by one of Gally's frequent panic attacks that sent her husband, Mike, stumbling down a twisting lane to the abandoned country cottage. From the moment Gally's gaze falls upon it, she feels a sense of having come home. A
Gill Chedgey
Sep 30, 2012 Gill Chedgey rated it really liked it
Ferney by James Long

This novel is immense in its breadth and concept. In fact it is extraordinary, breathtaking and at times too bewildering to get your head round. And those of us with a spiritual inclination toward karma and reincarnation, past lives and rebirth will be scurrying to meditate on these new possibilities!!

Yet on another level the story is astonishingly simple in terms of contemporary time travel fiction. But, and this is a big but, in my opinion the execution of the tale doesn’t
Feb 06, 2012 Mafi rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: library, 2012, pt
Quando Mike e Gally decidem comprar uma casa fora da cidade que vivem, devido ao estado de saúde mental de Gally, Gally sabe perfeitamente onde quer viver. Após uma longa procura da casa ideal, encontram acidentalmente uma belha casa na Vila de Somerset e infrutífera de casas que são bonitas mas de alguma forma não muito bem que eles acidentalmente cair e para desconforto de Mike, Gally afirma que a casa é perfeita.É aqui que encontram Ferney, protagonista da história, um homem idoso, quase com ...more
This is a review of both Ferney and its sequel The Lives She Left Behind.

While Mike and Gally Martin are looking for a country home they stumble across a ramshackle cottage to which Gally feels strangely drawn. The whole village seems familiar to her and Ferney, an old man who wanders the local countryside, seems particularly keen to get to know her. Gally feels a mounting connection to the cottage and to Ferney, who must wait patiently until she is ready to hear and accept the truth about their
Sep 19, 2012 Emma rated it did not like it
Ferney has an interesting concept, but sadly the book itself was not my cup of tea. James Long obviously has a vast knowledge (or did plenty of research) of the history of the area where Ferney is set and tries to put it all into the book. While interesting at first, sometimes these historical revelations and retelling jarred and slowed the pace of the story down. Rather than focusing on the characters and their development, it felt that Long was more interested in conveying his wealth of knowl ...more
Ellie Holmes
Aug 08, 2015 Ellie Holmes rated it it was amazing
Shelves: fiction-read
A beautifully engaging and beguiling time slip novel that draws you into the bucolic English countryside.

Mike and Gally are looking for a dream home in the country. They find it in a Somerset village. Along with an old man called Ferney who seems tied to the house. Gally and Ferney have a connection beyond rational explanation, a love that has endured down the centuries which we discover as their story unfolds. In the present day they are at very different stages of their lives so it is hard to
Feb 11, 2016 Elisabeth rated it really liked it
Gally is a young woman with a past. A past that haunts her on a daily basis. Putting it down to traumatic childhood, both Gally and her husband Mike, hope that a move to the country will help Gally deal with her demons.
However, the cottage that they come across by chance and a mysterious old man, Ferney, makes Gally realise that her past goes much further back than her childhood.
How is Ferney connected to Gally and why does the cottage that they have moved into feel strangely familiar to her.
Clare O'Beara
May 28, 2014 Clare O'Beara rated it really liked it
Shelves: british, fantasy
This is a somewhat slow tale and readers may lose interest. A flighty young woman and her sensible partner come to live in Somerset in a cottage and meet a rural man called Ferney. He shows them a standing stone in a field and talks about Roman times.

The story gradually expands so we see that the three have in fact lived previous lives and in the time of hill forts and clan battles, they were joined somehow in a pact to remain together so that they keep meeting up in new lives. Of course, they
Emma Lane
Feb 25, 2016 Emma Lane rated it it was amazing
this book has just brought more questions must read the next one and find out what happens couldnt put it down easily is a must read x
Rachel Pirie
Aug 15, 2014 Rachel Pirie rated it did not like it
This book is unbelievable.

Not in a good way.

The basic premise is that Ferney and Gally have been reincarnated throughout time, always ending up in the same village and in love with each other. Now, I have no problem with fantastical premises, suspension of belief is one of the joys of reading. But Long completely fails to convince that this premise could possibly work and what results is a story about an old man and a young woman with some kind of odd connection. This may be a story in itself,
Ferney was one of the paperbacks put aside for me by my sister. I got it in April and have only just gotten around to reading it, such is the heap of books I have awaiting reading. Unintentionally it shares a multiple lives theme with another of my recent reads, Life After Life. However, in Ferney, James Long explores the possibility of reincarnation in different lives rather than the repeated reliving of a single life.

Ferney is an eighty-year old man living in a rural, historic village. When yo
Dec 09, 2014 Lexi rated it really liked it
I finished reading Ferney on Sunday, but I've been so busy with giving my class their final and Christmas shopping that I haven't had time to do a review. This book is another that was in the bag of random books my mother-in-law gave us a couple of years ago. I don't quite know what to say about it. I guess I liked it, but it's kind of not a book you LIKE.

Ferney is about a woman named Gally and her husband, Mike. They are looking for a new home, somewhere out in the country, somewhere outside of
Trina Hollis
Sep 04, 2012 Trina Hollis rated it it was amazing
Shelves: fiction
Lovely! A book full of history between two people reborn throughout history. Ferney and Gally's paths cross over many times, sometimes just missing each other and others catching each other at different times. Can they be together for just one lifetime. The twist at the end was not one I had thought of and I didn't predict the end! that is why I really liked this story. can't wait to read his new one.
Jan 11, 2014 Edee rated it really liked it
I loved this book!
Had never heard of it - or the author - till seeing it here on Goodreads.
Although I found the beginning a bit dry & confusing, I'm happy I kept going - the story & the history lesson are sooo worth it!
Very happy to know there is a sequel.
Though it seems it might be a while before I can get my hands on a copy, I cannot wait to see were Ferney & Gally's love story will go!!
Michele Harrod
Jul 12, 2015 Michele Harrod rated it it was amazing
Ah yes, there it is - in my own original "Goodreads" list which I began when I started writing everything I read into a notebook, with the stars and all! This definitely has 5, with a great big tick right along side them as well! I recall loving this very much! Am very excited to have just discovered there is a sequel. How wonderful. Definitely an original and clever book.
Suzanne Cooper
Jul 31, 2015 Suzanne Cooper rated it liked it
Similar to Diana Gabaldon's "Outlander" series, but J.L. doesn't quite attain her passion, color, & romance. Still, a good read, you come to care about Ferney & Galley & the mystery of their connection. Set in England--liked their old cottage in the country! The author gets a little lost towards the end.

fav quotes: from Ferney- 'being full of beans' comes from people having more energy from their improved diet & 'feeling their oats' from people discovering that oats gave their ho
Aug 17, 2012 Gillian rated it did not like it
I certainly liked the sound of this novel and begain reading it with relish. The first few chapters were as good as expected but then I began to get confused. I begain to find the read very hard going and rather dry. It was a brilliant concept but I just didn't follow the story. Maybe I should have persevered but I gave up.
Oct 19, 2011 Jacquie rated it it was amazing
This is one of my all-time favourite books. I was left thinking about the story line long after I had finished it. Fantastic concept and lovely, lovely story. I'm not generally into love stories but the idea surrounding this took it far beyond an ordinary love story. If I could buy a copy I would.
Jun 21, 2014 Emily rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
In Ferney, the reader meets Mike and his nervous, haunted-by-the-past wife, Gabriella, nicknamed Gally. Filled with love, tenderness and concern for her, Mike still does not fully understand the mystery behind Gally’s nightmares or why she develops a sudden, desperate attraction to the Somerset village of Penselwood which they happen to pass through in the car one day, while venturing away from their home in London.

In this tiny, historic village, Gally is drawn to the abandoned, run-down Bagston
Neide Parafitas
Ferney é um livro para corações românticos e apesar de me considerar como tal, não posso dizer que a história me tenha deslumbrado.

É um livro interessante pela ideia que sugere e gostei de o ter lido, no entanto não foi um livro que me encheu as medidas!
Oct 10, 2008 Nicola rated it really liked it
Really loved this book. A litle slow to start and the sytle of writing sometimes made it difficult to follow but after a few chapters I was gripped.
Aug 17, 2014 Lynne rated it it was amazing
Great book, I borrowed this from the library and enjoyed it so much that I bought myself a copy and the sequel
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Aka Will Davenport

James Long was a BBC TV news correspondent until the end of the 1980s. After two years starting and running an international TV station out of Zurich, he returned to England to concentrate on writing, which had always been his first love. He wrote four thrillers, then went back to a story he had begun many years earlier and which grew into Ferney. The book was originally born fro
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