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112 pages, Paperback
First published June 18, 2019
“Slow and green he felt the life of it, the life that had been his life as well these four centuries past. It poured around him thick and steady, binding all together: the long patient strength of the trees that anchored, the deep bright power of the handful of dryads—Tobias felt Bramble clear as day among them, young and strong—and then the small and necessary, the bracken and ferns, the mosses and mushrooms. Here were the songbirds and ravens and solemn wide-winged owls, shy deer and burrowing rabbits, fox and badger and snake, beetles and moths and midges, all the things that were the wood, that lived each in their own way under the shelter of the old oak.”
“He thought of four hundred years repairing and re-repairing that roof; of scrubbing out the floors, fixing the doors and shutters, planting and replanting his little garden. Four hundred years while his cottage grew around him like a tree growing its rings; Pearl’s mother and grandmother and great-great-great-grandmother all the way back to the cat who’d ambled around Greenhallow Hall when Fabian had been its master; four hundred years of the wood, and barely a soul passing through the whole time.”
”The world was far bigger than Tobias remembered from four centuries ago. It was bigger than he had ever known, and he was living in it. He had thought himself a thing uprooted, like the great oak, ready to begin his death.”
”[…] he felt himself for a moment as the stump of a rotten old tree, putting up thin green shoots at strange new angles.”
"At once slow deep green rolled over him. He took a breath, and another, smelling old rotting leaves and healthy growth and autumn light. He felt almost as though he could have planted his feet and become a tree himself, a strong oak reaching up to the sky, brother of the old oak who ruled the wood."
#2) Drowned Country ★★★★★
"He knew it the same way the woodsman knew it, because he knew trees: but he also knew it with the knowledge of the Wild Man of Greenhallow, who felt every slow green beat of the forest's heart."
He knew it the same way the woodsman knew it, because he knew trees, but he also knew it with the knowledge of the Wild Man of Greenhallow, who felt every slow green beat of the forest's heart. You could cut a tree down to nothing and it'd still put out shoots in the springtime, if the roots went deep enough. The forest would feed it, the sun would wake it. And no roots were deeper than the old oak's.