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The Weirdstone of Brisingamen (Junior Classics)

By Alan Garner & Philip Madoc (Narrator)
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Item Number 175519  
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Item description for The Weirdstone of Brisingamen (Junior Classics) by Alan Garner & Philip Madoc...

The heart of the magic was sealed with Firefrost, the Weirdstone of Brisingamen...should Nastrond destroy the stone, then the magic will die away. When Colin and Susan are pursued by eerie creatures across Alderley Edge, the Wizard - Cadellin Silverbrow - takes them to safety deep in the caves of Fundindelve. Here he watches over the enchanted sleep of one hundred and forty knights, awaiting the fated hour when they must rise and fight. But the Weirdstone of Brisingamen is lost and the forces of evil are closing in. The children realise that they are the key to its return, but how can they defeat the powerful magic of the Morrigan and her deadly brood. First published in 1960, four decades before "Harry Potter", Alan Garner's novel of magic and wizards has endured and become a modern classic of children's literature.

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Item Specifications...

Format: Audiobook,   Classical
Studio: Naxos Audiobooks
Est. Packaging Dimensions:   Length: 1" Width: 5.75" Height: 4.75"
Weight:   0.5 lbs.
Binding  CD
Publisher   Naxos Audiobooks
ISBN  9626343966  
ISBN13  9789626343968  

Availability  0 units.

More About Alan Garner & Philip Madoc

Register your artisan biography and upload your photo! Alan Garner has taught hundreds of Conversationally Speaking workshops. He is the coauthor of "Lifers for Adult Children".

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Product Categories

1Books > Audio CDs > Children's Fiction > Classics
2Books > Audio CDs > Children's Fiction > Fantasy
3Books > Audio CDs > Children's Fiction > General
4Books > Subjects > Children > Ages 9-12 > General
5Books > Subjects > Children > Literature > Classics by Age > General
6Books > Subjects > Children > Literature > Classics by Age
7Books > Subjects > Children > Literature > Science Fiction, Fantasy, Mystery & Horror > Science Fiction, Fantasy, & Magic
8Books > Subjects > Children > Ages 9-12
9Books > Subjects > Science Fiction & Fantasy > Authors, A-Z > ( G ) > Garner, Alan
10Books > Subjects > Science Fiction & Fantasy > Fantasy > Contemporary
11Music > Styles > Classical > General

Reviews - What do customers think about The Weirdstone of Brisingamen (Junior Classics)?

Garner: The Lost Inkling?  Dec 7, 2006
I can't imagine why more people (especially young people) aren't reading Alan Garner these days. His books, while still in print, aren't often found in the bookstores' active inventories anymore, which is a sad loss. Well, no matter -- you can get them through this site or (probably) at your local library. And you should, because they are wonderful!

I first read The Weirdstone of Brisingamen while in grade school, around the time I was discovering J.R.R. Tolkien and Lloyd Alexander. It's an exciting fantasy tale, the more so because it is woven into the hidden nooks and crannies of our own modern-day world -- unlike Tolkien and Alexander. You never know when you might look behind a standing stone, only to find a stromkarl chanting a spell, while other passersby would see nothing but a little man humming to himself ...

Colin and Susan are very likable young protagonists, and there are plenty of other characters -- both good and evil -- to keep the story engrossing. When I was young, I was terrified of the Mara and the Svart-alfar! And the Earldelving is enough to make anybody claustrophobic! The novel is full of surprises, excitement, and just good old fashioned adventure.

After many, many readings, I've come to appreciate what Garner's done from a more adult and "serious" standpoint -- integrating folkloric and mythological elements (particularly the Old Norse) into the fabric of a "modern" children's fantasy. Garner has much in common with Tolkien, Lewis, and the other Inklings, as well as Ursula K. Le Guin, Susan Cooper, and Lloyd Alexander.

But at the heart of it all, it's just great fantasy! Read it and see if you don't agree.
Delightful!  Mar 26, 2006
This is a delightful little book, and one that is guaranteed to keep young and old readers alike absorbed through a rainy afternoon. The author has a gift for story-telling and a lovely, slightly quaint style reminiscent of Tolkien or Lewis, and his sensitive use of language really helps to bring his vision and imagination to life. He also paints his scenery and setting beautifully, so that the reader is transported without much difficulty in to a world of dark mines and loathsome goblins, deep, mysterious woods and enchanted knights. Bring on the sequel!
Spellbinding classic fantasy  Apr 22, 2004
Wizards, dwarves, goblins and elves - Tolkien, right? Wrong. Alan "Weirdstone of Brisingamen," a spellbinding story in the true tradition of imaginative and inventive fantasy. Using various bits of Celtic and Norse mythology, Garner wound together an astounding story.

Colin and Susan, a pair of English schoolkids, are sent to Alderly for a six-month vacation with their mother's old nurse and her husband. Things start off normally enough, with the kids exploring the area and the myths, legends and superstitions surrounding it. But things begin to take an eerie turn when they encounter a spell-chanting old woman named Selina Place - and then a horde of svart-alfar, hideous and hostile goblins.

They are unexpectedly rescued by the wizard Cadellin, who is the keeper of a company of knights sleeping deep under Alderly. They will awaken at some time in the future, to combat the evil spirit Nastrond and his minions in the final, magical battle. There's just one problem: long ago, Cadellin lost the Weirdstone of Brisingamen, the magical jewel that bound the knights there in the first place. Susan realizes too late that the little misty teardrop gem in her bracelet is the Weirdstone - and it's been stolen. The kids team up with Cadellin, the dwarves Fenodyree and Durathror, the lios-alfar (elves), and their friend Gowther to find the Weirdstone - and save the world.

Written in the 1960s, this book effectively combines the English-schoolkids-swept-into-magical adventure subgenre with mythology and the overlap of our world with another. Garner's wizards, dwarves, elves and goblins are as legit as Tolkien's, as Garner draws heavily from mythos and legends. There are similarities to Tolkien's creations, but they are sufficiently different that not once do you feel the need to compare. Garner lifts from Norse and Celtic mythologies for this book (mentions of the Morrigan and Ragnarok are featured within pages of one another) and manages to cobble it together into a coherent and believable whole.

Alderly is effectively shown - from the moment the kids venture out of the farm, there is the sense that enchantment is thrumming through the land, and that a magical creature could be lurking nearby. The sense of atmosphere is somewhat stunted by the fact that we rarely hear the characters' thoughts, though, but such creatures as the svart-alfar and the lios-alfar are effective in the simple, evocative descriptions.

This is a book more for Tolkien fans than Diana Wynne-Jones fans. Though there are a few funny parts, it is overall a relentlessly serious book, with many of the characters using archaic-sounding language. Another good thing: the kids speak like twentieth-century preteens ("That WOULD have made a mess of things!") while such characters as Durathror speaking like warriors from centuries ago ("... for there I think it will be, and so to Fundindelve, where I shall join you if I may.") In addition, there is no cutesy magic or gimmickry, or casual magical elements popping up every page or two. The magic featured in here is deadly serious and very intense.

Colin and Susan are the archetypical kids-on-holiday-in-magical-place: brave, respectful, inquisitive, curious, and in completely over their heads. Cadellin is an excellent wizard, dignified and powerful but sufficiently human to be sympathetic, such as his reaction when he hears that the Weirdstone has been stolen from Susan. This guy deserves a seat right below Gandalf, and alongside Merlin, Ged and Ebenezum. The dwarves are serious and unusually cool-headed for the fantasy portrayal of dwarves; the lios-alfar are featured less prominently, but the "elves of light" passage is one of the most moving paragraphs in the book, both sad and beautiful.

The only problem with this book is its shortness, and its presence as only one of two. The tales of Alderly are so rich that you feel that Garner could have churned out fifty books and never grown stale. For fans of serious fantasy, this is a must-have.

A book to read over and over ...  May 5, 2002
I looked this book up just to see if it was still available anywhere. I believe I bought it when it was published in 1981, and have probably read it at least once a year since then. Scary without being terrifying, hopeful without being simple - it's an excellent book! One of my all time favorites. I can't wait to read it to my children when they get a little older.
In praise of good children's fiction  Jun 3, 1997
This book although essentially for children is a wonderfully fast moving and magical chase across a landscape dotted with mystical creatures and races from past times, forgotten now in the minds of more sophisticated men. The story is based on the legend of Alderley that an ancient king and his knights sleep under the hill there awaiting the call that will come if ever the powers of darkness should threaten to overtake the land. The Wierstone of Brisingamen is an ancient, magic stone of such power that it keeps king, knights and their milk white steeds in a state of suspended animation, protected forever against the powers of evil who would destroy them and prevent their riding forth one day to do battle.... The stone has been lost and through a series of events it transpires that it belongs to a young girl called Susan who is now back at Alderly with the Wierdstone fastened to her slender wrist. This fact is not lost on the local witch, Selina Place, the Morrigan, a shape shifter out for power and who recognises the stone when she sees it one day. This draws the children into a series of terrifying circumstances as good and bad struggle to be the guardians of the powerful talisman. This tale is well paced and well written. It is full of good and bad characters whose struggle spills over into the world of mortal men and sweeps up the 2 children at the center of the story carrying them along on a tide of events which take them in and out of danger helped by their friend Gowther Mossock.....a somewhat grizzled old farmer who is still innocent enough of the worlds more cynical ways to be able to believe in the old ways, the magic ways..... Cadellin Silverbrow, the magician who had charge of the Wierdstone of Brisingamen and to his shame lost it, strides majestically through the story to a thrilling conclusion and a battle between the forces of good and evil It is a book which I read to my children many times and still enjoy myself today, it almost makes you believe that if you looked hard enough and in the right places that you would see the traces of those inhabitants of a world once familiar to Mankind, now sadly lost to all except those with the childlike ability to suspend disbelief. I thouroughly recommend this book

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