God's Own Country
Granta Best Young British Novelist
In Waterline, one of the most celebrated debut novels of recent years, Ross Raisin tells the story of solitary young farmer, Sam Marsdyke, and his extraordinary battle with the world.
Expelled from school and cut off from the town, mistrusted by his parents and avoided by city incomers, Marsdyke is a loner until he meets rebellious ne
There's no doubt about it, the writing is superbly done. How else could I have found such a disturbed individual as the main character so likeable? For the largest part of the book I found myself sympathising with his viewpoint and, even as it became clear there was something more sinister going on, I still felt that it wasn't all entirely his fault.
While reading I felt that a subtext to...more
...enjoyed this, the charm of the (unreliable, slighty bonkers) young narrator wins you over immediately. Bit like the 'Butcher Boy' you're drawn in by his jokey style, his use of dialect, his love of animals and nature. All the animals talk, sheep, dogs, w...more
It's saying something that I liked reading the author’s interview and an additional essay in the back of the book more than the actual...more
All through the read I couldn't shut off this feeling of dread of what the budding association of "lankenstein" aka "bogeyman" aka Sam Marsdyke and the newly moved "towns'" daughter will end in. As he is the hero of the novel one wants...more
This book had the largest amount of British slang I have ever encountered which I found rather fascinating, sometimes puzzling and ultimately made for slow-going reading-wise in some respects. Most of the time I can figure it out from the context but I did occasionally have to look-up a...more
I appreciated what the author was trying to do here, but I didn't necessarily enjoy reading this book. To be fair, I'm not sure how much my entertainment level should affect the amount of stars, but I felt a certain level of ambivalence while reading the story...and I ki...more
That seemingly least offensive breed of people, ramblers, come in for some enjoyably sharp criticism and the unwelcome influx of the middle classes into a rural community, complete...more
I was also swallowed up by th...more
The reader's relationship with the main protagonist changes as the story progresses, and it becomes a gothic account of a...more
God's Own Country is a tale about Sam Marsdyke, a 19-year-old farmer's son living in the North Yorkshire Moors. Expelled from school under controversial circumstances and ostracised by his peers, Sam lives a lonely life with only the land and his animals for company. When the neighbouring farmer dies and his land is bou...more
Sam is a very likeable character for all his misanthropic outlook on life. He adores his sheepdog Sal and has a deep but unspoken love affair for the Moors, threatened in his eyes by the 't...more
Ross Raisin gives an insightful description of a rural way of life that is fast declining but can still be found in pockets. The strength of this book is in the description of this way of life - its landscape and people - and the use of humour and local language.
The plot is less satis...more
Okay I'll break a habit and write a thought about this book too - I was impressed that - in a first novel - the author didn't (to my eyes) crow bar in anything not required. Other first novelists have lots of ideas and thoughts they want to publish and often they'll slot them into a story for that sake only. On the other hand, I'm not sure why the author has the narrator speak in a Yorkshire dialog...more