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Walking through shadows : a journey of loss and renewal

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Details:

Publication Type
General Interest Book
Author
Mike Cawthorne
ISBN
9781780276038
Date Published
2019
Number of Pages
224pp
Cost
Purchase Info
https://birlinn.co.uk/product/walking-through-shadows/
Buy Online at Amazon.co.uk

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Supplier:

Name
Type
Publisher
Web Site
Supplier Info
Birlinn publishes Scottish and general UK interest books, from biography to history, military history, sport and Scottish Gaelic. The name comes from the old Norse word 'birlinn', meaning a long boat or small galley used especially in the Hebrides and West Highlands of Scotland in the Middle Ages.

Review:

Publisher's website 2020

Walking Through Shadows describes a winter walk in memory of the authorís friend, Clive Dennier, a popular Inverness journalist, who died in Knoydart in March 2013 but whose body was found only some weeks later. The journey begins at Whiten Head on the north Sutherland coast and ends at Kinloch Hourn in Knoydart, the place where Clive was eventually found. Mike Cawthorne undertook the walk with his friend, Nick (also a friend of Cliveís), from mid-January to late February 2015. Their walk traversed the wildest and most remote areas of Britain, often in atrocious winter conditions. The walkers were entirely reliant on food parcels buried beforehand.

As well as describing some the last wild places in Scotland in the heart of winter the narrative explores themes of grief, chance, mental illness and ecological damage. The authorís companion is struggling throughout with the effects of severe mental illness but sees in the walk the hope of some relief from this suffering. The walkers are asking a question: whether the hills can heal at a human level and whether the hills can themselves be healed. In the shadow of the Anthropocene Mike Cawthorne evokes the darkness of winter, of two individuals seeking answers, alone in a freezing wilderness that is both beautiful and moribund. In the context of an extreme mountaineering adventure, he is grappling with issues of vital importance to us all.


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