books for dreaming

I have a lovely stack of library books at the moment, which is quite rare these days because I've become increasingly particular about what I read. My online library of articles and blogs serves my daily wish for information and inspiration; books are for sinking deep into the wild dreaming of the world.

 Meraylah Allwood

The Antidote, by Oliver Burkeman. As many of you know, I am vehemently against the positive thinking movement. So it was a delight to find this book, which describes the damage this psychology can do, and offers an alternative path to contentment. I'm only halfway through so can't report back yet on its wisdom, but so far I'm finding it well-written and interesting.

The Stone Book Quartet by Alan Garner. The writing evokes the land in which this story is set - old, rich, earthy, a masterpiece of creation. I am saving it for a stormy day.

The Civilisation of the Goddess by Marija Gimbutas. I read this several years ago but was recently inspired to look at it again. It's a massive book in both the literal and figurative sense, weighted with history, wisdom, and spiritual riches. Although a person interested in the Goddess would want to read it in companionship with stories, folktales, myths, to add emotional lusciousness to the subject.

At the Water's Edge, by John Lister-Kaye. Subtitled, "a personal quest for wildness." I fell in love-at-first-page with this book, it's written with such sympathy and tenderness for its subject. Jay Griffith describes it beautifully : "Full of otter-story and heron-meaning, this is a book where sunrise, pine marten, trout and storm are all characters; a book of land-knowing by someone who has spent a gentle lifetime learning the languages of animals. With an untameable enthusiasm and generosity of spirit, Lister-Kaye translates those languages into a kind of inter-species friendship."

A Branch from the Lightning Tree, by Martin Shaw. "Estatic myth and the grace of wildness." I have been wanting to read this book for years, so to have it become available finally through my national library system was such a joy.

If you have any reading suggestions for us, do mention them in the comments.


  1. Martin Shaw's work reminds me very much of your writing. Thank you for newsletter no. 2 I very much enjoyed reading it.

  2. Thanks for the recommendations! I am waiting with baited breath for Martin Shaw's new book, Scatterlings. I trust you've seen the lovely short film about that? Its on youtube, if not. In the meantime, I will get this one and order the Alan Garner books from the library. Have you read If Women Rose Rooted by Sharon Blackie?

    1. PS I see Singing Over the Bones, Sharon's blog in the sidebar, so I imagine you know her writing. I found the new book to be just what I needed right now.

    2. Martin Shaw's video is sublime, I recommended it in my e-letter. And I love Sharon's writing so much. Unfortunately, purchased books are a rare luxury - which is difficult since I know so many authors. I would love to be able to support them all.

    3. Yes, I usually get books from the library, but If Women Rose Rooted, I knew I needed to splurge on. Hope it finds its way to you sometime sooner than later.