Time for the best read of your life!

We all know about the transformative power of  reading. Words can stimulate our imagination, transform our horizons and take us to other worlds. Whilst on this journey we can wrestle with ideas, journey to our soul, seek out new adventures and discover new insights. I've long been an avid reader. However, never more so than now. Recently, whilst  browsing in our local Oxfam book shop with my eldest son, I was drawn to a book - The Gift, written by Australian poet and author Alison Croggon.

This epic fantasy, which has the feel of an Arthurian legend,  is one of a trilogy. The story is set in a mythical land and tells  the breath-taking tale of Maerad, a young female bard, who discovers that she is the Chosen One set with the task to defeat the Nameless One and thus save her world from death and destruction.

The narrative in this powerful page-turner is beautifully crafted. It  takes the reader into an ancient world as we follow Maerad's extraordinary journey of self discovery.  The text is sublimely poetic and deeply engaging with an ethereal edge, which keeps the reader hanging onto every word.

Although the stuff of myth and legend the story is based on a translation of ancient scrolls, discovered in the Atlas mountains in 1991 after an earthquake. Lying at the heart of the story are some big ideas - the possibilities for humanity, gender questions, the nature of good and evil, war and peace. However, above all else, The Gift is just an exhilarating read and comes highly recommended.

I've just finished The Riddle, which is also an enthralling page turner. Can't wait to dive into the final book in the trilogy, The Crow. I'm on holiday in Ibiza next week, so I'll have time to indulge my senses even more.  If you've also got a holiday coming up and need a good book then The Gift is worth a shot. (If you're reading this in the USA the title is The Naming.)

So, whatever your plans are for the end of the summer, make some time now for one of the best reads of your life.


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