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Stone Cradle

3.92  ·  Rating Details  ·  111 Ratings  ·  18 Reviews
As the Romany people struggle to survive the changes of the 20th century, the author charts one family's path through persecution and tragedy, asking, can the Romany spirit survive in a century that no longer has space for them?
Published April 1st 2007 by Pocket Books
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May 23, 2014 Margi rated it really liked it
The Stone Cradle was a delightful read which managed to give me a lovely insight into the lives of two women telling their story throughout a few generations. I loved the style of writing and how the Romaney language was used to compliment the Romaney people's way.
Valerie Penny
Feb 06, 2014 Valerie Penny rated it it was amazing
Louise Doughty is an English novelist, playwright and journalist who has a Romany background. She was born in Melton Mowbray, 4 September 1963. She attended the University of Leeds and is an alumna of the University of East Anglia’s Creative Writing Course.
This story is narrated by two women, one of whom is Romany, and charts the fortunes of one English family over three generations as the 20th century rolls by. It is beautifully written, with sadness and humour in equal measure.

The book starts
Steven Kay
May 03, 2015 Steven Kay rated it it was amazing
Stone Cradle is a book that makes me want to give up writing. It is as near perfect as writing can get, and makes me question whether I can ever get even half-way as good.
I read quite analytically these days – all too often I spot the strings on the puppets or the hand of the puppeteer, or their bald head poking up. But Stone Cradle is flawless – all I could do was stand in awe of the writer’s skill and get carried away with the story. It’s one of those books I want to buy for everyone I know.
Joy Lo-Bamijoko
Apr 01, 2016 Joy Lo-Bamijoko rated it it was amazing
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Bev Taylor
May 15, 2016 Bev Taylor rated it really liked it
one family, two women from very different worlds

this story starts from the mid 1800'2 and continues thru to the late 1900's

clem is bought up as a traveller (not to be called a gypsy) and gives birth to elijah as a young teenager. shunned by their friends her family stands by her

she loses her mother and then her son falls in love with a non-romany and the differences between her and clem threaten to pull the whole family apart

she raises 5 children of her own but her marriage never makes her r
Nov 08, 2014 David rated it liked it
What could have been a great novel spanning three generations from 1875 to 1949 turned out to be only so so. The theme seemed to be the relationship between a Romany life and that of a poor fenland family. When Rose marries the gipsy Elijah, her mother in law tells her she will always be sorry she did. So this was never going to be an uplifting tale. However, the differences between the two women make for an interesting contrast of the two ways of life.

There are also some wonderful examples of h
Sep 04, 2011 Tara rated it it was amazing
One of my favourite reads this year. Narrated by two women, one Romany, charting the fortunes of one English family over three generations as the 20th century rolls by. Beautifully written, with sadness and humour in equal measure.
Sep 01, 2011 Ape rated it it was amazing
Shelves: england
This was an absolutely fantastic read. The writing and the story telling. I just loved this book. It could have gone on and on forever for me.

Starting off in the late 1800s, it alternates in the storytelling from two different women's perspectives. The first is Clementina, the only child of a travelling family, who falls pregnant as a teenager, unmarried and never revealing the identity of the father. She has her son, Lijah, and they continue the travelling life. When Lijah's about twenty or so,
Kris Evans
Jun 09, 2016 Kris Evans rated it really liked it
I have been curious about the "gypsies" of my childhood memories. I learned that many came to this country by way of Great Britain where they were (or are) part of an "invisible" culture there. I wanted to read a novel with this setting and discovered this one. I learned a lot from this book written by an author from the culture. She is a good writer and the story was very good. Highly satisfying (and only $.99 on kindle!)
May 27, 2016 Jo rated it did not like it
This book was an enormous disappointment. Adored AppleTree Yard but this was dire. Really didn't like the characters, wasn't interested in what happened to them, just didn't care. I wasn't expecting it to be a carbon copy of AppleTree Yard but I was expecting a book I would really enjoy. Sadly not- worst book I've read in a while which grieves me as I gave 5 stars to AppleTree
Mar 14, 2014 Jill rated it it was amazing
Loved this novel. Skilfully narrated with brilliant use of original metaphor. These descriptions were so insightful inferring a range of emotion with few words. Reading this was like living alongside the characters with the turning of each page.
Annie Noonan
loved it!
Aug 11, 2015 Gail rated it liked it
pretty good
Oct 28, 2012 Lesley rated it really liked it
I love Louise Doughty's writing style and am in awe of her ability to describe small, focused moments in the lives of her characters.

This tale of gypsy life in the Fens at the turn of the century was fascinating and raised questions for me of why people cling to traditional ways that seem destined to create hardship for themselves and their families.

Jan 03, 2016 Sandra rated it really liked it
Not at all what I expected, having discovered Louise Doughty via Apple Tree Yard; much quieter in tone but deeply thought-provoking. Informative on the Traveller's way of life and the meeting of cultures, insightful on family interactions and differing perspectives thereof.
And a thoroughly enjoyable story.
Aug 07, 2009 Zippy rated it liked it
Shelves: fiction
I very nearly gave up on this, I didn't enjoy the first half of the book at all - can't give a decent reason why though. However glad I stuck with it as I enjoyed it more as time went on, and did finally get into the characters. Wouldn't rush out and buy another of hers though.
I loved this book. I grew up in and around the Peterborough area, which made it all the more real. I loved the relationship between the generations of women, and how differently they viewed the same events.
Anna Szabo
Nov 13, 2012 Anna Szabo rated it really liked it
An interesting portrait of the life of Travellers at the turn of the 20th century. Beautifully written.
Jo Eccles
Jo Eccles rated it really liked it
Jul 13, 2016
K rated it really liked it
Jul 22, 2016
Sue rated it it was amazing
Jul 13, 2016
Kit marked it as to-read
Jul 02, 2016
Cindie Harp
Cindie Harp marked it as to-read
Jul 02, 2016
Taryn rated it it was amazing
Jul 01, 2016
Mrs Diana Taylor
Mrs Diana Taylor rated it did not like it
Jul 01, 2016
Allison j Gibson
Allison j Gibson marked it as to-read
Jun 29, 2016
D Wiggall
D Wiggall rated it really liked it
Jun 28, 2016
Amanda Powell
Amanda Powell rated it really liked it
Jun 11, 2016
Val Nunn
Val Nunn marked it as to-read
Jun 11, 2016
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Louise Doughty is a novelist, playwright and critic. She is the author of five novels; CRAZY PAVING, DANCE WITH ME, HONEY-DEW, FIRES IN THE DARK and STONE CRADLE, and one work of non-fiction A NOVEL IN A YEAR. She has also written five plays for radio. She has worked widely as a critic and broadcaster in the UK, where she lives, and was a judge for the 2008 Man Booker Prize for fiction.

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