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Ghosts of Wales: Accounts from the Victorian Archives
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Side reads > Mark Rees - A-Z of Curious Wales and Ghosts of Wales

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Owen | 105 comments Mod
Post here for comments on Mark Rees' work on Welsh folktales


Claire | 77 comments I am so excited to read this! My copy is supposed to come tomorow, cant wait!


Owen | 105 comments Mod
I'm just ordering now, shouldn't take long to arrive hopefully


Claire | 77 comments Cool let me know when you're ready to start.

Ghosts of Wales came today but A-Z didn't.


Claire | 77 comments So I started reading this today and I'm loving it!
There are a lot of stories and places I recognise and some folk tales I already knew but I've definitely been learning a lot more about curious parts of Wales and finding some places I'd like to visit.

Currently on H, first entry... Halloween!


Owen | 105 comments Mod
oh I need to order - btw I saw on twitter he's working on paranormal Wales as his next book


Claire | 77 comments I thought you'd already ordered it lol.

Ooo really? ill keep an eye out for that.
I really enjoyed this one and want to read his other two now. One is about landmarks and the other is about Welsh culture.


Owen | 105 comments Mod
I had started these btw, sorry forgot to say. Will post soon :)


Owen | 105 comments Mod
I just finished GoW - I liked it as a fun little side read. What I find interesting is what causes these kind of stories to emerge.

When you think about the flux of the Victorian era it's no wonder there are so many spooky stories. I guess people were just reacting to the new normal. Couple that with the more industrial ones, those are from people who were clearly traumatised by being in a dangerous, heavy industry that could kill them all at any moment. I found those ones kind of sad but I grew up in Gwent and can definitely see the scars there.

It's also pretty obvious that the writers emulated the popular novelists, like Poe. He even says as much in the closing chapters. It's almost like Victorian fan fic.

I wonder how distinctly Welsh these tales are. Some could be from anywhere but the more industrial ones and the ghost candles one I suppose must be unique.

Overall found it interesting and a fun read, more for what it says about the place at that time than the actual stories themselves.

Will get on with Curious Wales asap


Claire | 77 comments I enjoyed it but not as much as I'd hoped. I did find the stories interesting and as you said I liked how it described Wales at the those times.

I don't think I've read any Victorian literature set in Wales, maybe that I know of.
When I read that it was newspaper articles from Victorian times with stories of 'real' ghosts I expected it to be set out differently.

I think I would have found it more interesting if they were set out as an article with the author maybe introducing and concluding each one. Rather than him interjecting between paragraphs of the article.

I did like this but I loved Curious Wales a lot more :)
Looking forward to your thoughts on it.


message 11: by Owen (new) - rated it 4 stars

Owen | 105 comments Mod
Yeah I'd agree with that - I either wanted a lot more comparison and commentary or a lot less. The articles I found most interesting were the ones that were most Welsh if that makes sense.

Glad a-z is good. I just started - I must have made a lucky guess because I bought that hard copy buy ghosts I just read on Kindle on my phone as I figured it wouldn't be something I'd read again


message 12: by Owen (new) - rated it 4 stars

Owen | 105 comments Mod
loving a-z, this is exactly what I was hoping for. My only minor complaint is I'm not sure alphabetical is the most logical and would have somehow preferred to be grouped thematically.

I'd love to do an online website/map of folklore, mythical, legendary and spooky curious type sites. Like an interactive atlas. I wonder how hard that would be to do.


Claire | 77 comments Owen wrote: "loving a-z, this is exactly what I was hoping for. My only minor complaint is I'm not sure alphabetical is the most logical and would have somehow preferred to be grouped thematically.

I'd love to..."


Ooo good idea. That would be great for travelling, having places to look out for.


message 14: by Owen (new) - rated it 4 stars

Owen | 105 comments Mod
I might have to look into that idea, I can't believe it doesn't already exist!


message 15: by Owen (new) - rated it 4 stars

Owen | 105 comments Mod
Just finished a-z, I really loved it. Just what I was hoping it would be. Am fascinated by the Salem painting!

Only minor gripe is there is little in either books about Gwent. Going to have to find our own!

I'm sketching out this map idea too, nice little creative side project. Will let you know how I get on


Claire | 77 comments Owen wrote: "Just finished a-z, I really loved it. Just what I was hoping it would be. Am fascinated by the Salem painting!

Only minor gripe is there is little in either books about Gwent. Going to have to fin..."


Sounds great! :) Good Luck!

Yeah that's true. I'm interested in Wales as a whole and my local area in regards to myths, stories and folklore.
I have a book called Gwent Folk Tales that sounds interesting.


message 17: by Owen (new) - rated it 4 stars

Owen | 105 comments Mod
oh cool let me know if that's any good, I grew up there but my local lore knowledge is terrible


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