The Swan-Bone Flute (The Storytellers Trilogy Book One): Second Updated Edition

· Bog Oak · Narrated by Rachel O'Leary
1 review
19 hr 21 min
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About this audiobook

'You can choose tales that keep your nose in the dirt - or look around for talk that lifts you.'

Historical fantasy - with a difference! Earth lovers, climate activists, environment protectors - use this novel and its Questions for Book Clubs or for Groups to vision a sustainable future together. The characters in Wellstowe and Peony Valley live in harmony with nature - until the rule of the fist crashes into their peaceful lives with arrows and groping hands. As they resist, protect each other and reclaim their inclusive democracy, we see how we can re-create our lives and society.

When Ursel jumps down from an oak to save a mother deer from the hunt, her uncle beats her but cannot silence her. 598 CE/AD. Hilda the storyteller strides into their settlement, her pack full of myths of the peaceful queens and shamans of Peony Valley. She fills her listeners with dreams of honey and blood - and longing for justice.

Celtic Slave-girl Meg yearns to be a storyteller like Hilda - but dare she? What do men do to women who stand tall?

Her mother, Seren the Healer, longs to use her spells - but has to gut fish for her owner.

Oswynne, Anglo-Saxon headman's wife, is torn between loyalty to him and the nourishing company of women. Is Seren's magic mist dangerous?

When they grow from fear to friendship they have a chance to stop Thane Roger grabbing 'whatever, and whoever, he wants.' Will he take over their inclusive moot, or can the women work together?

Self-help elements include listening partnerships; a simple technique to heal. Strong women characters base cooperation on powerful friendships deepened this way. Hilda's story wisdom guides her listeners. They learn to direct anger to confront wrongs, dance when overwhelmed, trust inner darkness.

Do you like Juliet Marillier, Mary Renault, Philip Pullman? Enjoy this book as a gripping read.

Ratings and reviews

1 review
Caitriona Martin
December 31, 2023
A brilliant book, written and read by a fantastic storyteller. It is a gripping tale, stuffed full of wisdom that I am going to be pondering over for a very long time (I first read it in Sept 2019 in paperback and am listening to the audiobook now in Dec 2023 and still noticing new messages in the book). The characters are brilliant and I love how we see them grow in confidence and empower each other. I loved the way that lessons in emotional intelligence, our relationship with nature and natural fertility are woven into the story, hopefully creating sparks of interest to follow up on (if you weren't already interested). I spent many nights up way too late as I just wanted to keep reading. I want all my close friends to read it so that I can talk about the important themes with them and share our ideas and reflections together to inform and influence our own lives.
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