The Great Level
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The Great Level

3.82 (45 ratings by Goodreads)
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Description

A `magical, haunting' (Philippa Gregory) novel of a tragic love affair in a threatened world

In 1649, Jan Brunt, a Dutchman, arrives in England to work on draining and developing the Great Level, an expanse of marsh in the heart of the fen country. It is here he meets Eliza, whose love overturns his ordered vision and whose act of resistance forces him to see the world differently.

Jan flees to the New World, where the spirit of avarice is raging and his skills as an engineer are prized. Then one spring morning a boy delivers a note that prompts him to remember the fens, and confront all that was lost there.

`The most beautiful historical novel you'll read all year... Extraordinary'
Simon Schama

`Richly involving... The story of a strange and passionate relationship'
Guardian

`If you want to be utterly transported to another time, another place, read The Great Level. A haunting depiction of love and difference'
Amanda Vickery
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Product details

  • Paperback | 240 pages
  • 129 x 198 x 15mm | 195g
  • VINTAGE
  • London, United Kingdom
  • English
  • 0099526433
  • 9780099526438
  • 625,905

Review Text

"The Great Level proves worth the seven-year wait… This is an impressive piece of work, rich in historical detail and human insight"
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Review quote

"Stella Tillyard has done that magical thing - combined solid historical research with an ethereal sense of the past. Her New Amsterdam in America is as wonderfully realised as the shifting world of the Fens in England. It's a haunting book with characters who stay with the reader as their lives unfold like a sea mist" -- Philippa Gregory "The Great Level proves worth the seven-year wait... This is an impressive piece of work, rich in historical detail and human insight" -- Nick Rennison * Sunday Times * "Rousing and heroic... this is a novel of large vision and careful detail... [Tillyard] paddles her coracle deep into little-known channels and conjure atmospheres as thick as still summer air over the meres... Richly involving... The story of a strange and passionate relationship" -- Alexandra Harris * Guardian * "Historian Stella Tillyard's first fictional outing, Tides of War, earned her a 2012 Orange Prize nomination. Her second novel similarly showcases her skills as a chronicler of period and place... Fans of Rose Tremain will find much to admire in Tillyard's richly detailed and atmospheric romance" -- Stephanie Cross * Daily Mail * "There is much to love in The Great Level - Tillyard writes with great authority...and the book has the smack of authenticity. The passages that Eliza narrates...are wonderful" -- Antonia Senior * The Times *
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About Stella Tillyard

Stella Tillyard is a writer and historian whose acclaimed biographies include Aristocrats, Citizen Lord and A Royal Affair. Her first novel, Tides of War, was longlisted for the Orange Prize for Fiction 2012. She has lived in the USA and Italy and now lives in London.
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Rating details

45 ratings
3.82 out of 5 stars
5 29% (13)
4 33% (15)
3 29% (13)
2 9% (4)
1 0% (0)
Book ratings by Goodreads
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