Friday, July 23, 2010

My new book - a dry stone dyke tells its story

My second pocket book is out this week, with a stony cover to chime visually with ‘Whiter than White’, and inside pages illustrated with line drawings. ‘The Beat of Heart Stones’ celebrates a Highland Perthshire landmark - an extraordinary dry-stone dyke that climbs two miles in a straight line towards the summit of Schiehallion. I find it hard to claim it as either fiction or non-fiction, but a walker who falls into step with the wall gets to hear its story.

Dry stone walling dates back at least three and a half millennia, to the village of Skara Brae in Orkney, and the Iron Age brochs of northern and western Scotland. The Perthshire dyke probably dates from the early nineteenth century and marks a very old boundary line. My eye has always been drawn up the dyke from the road under Schiehallion’s northern side. It has a monumental place in the landscape, striking upwards over steep and undulating ground. Eventually I walked its length, and began to think about the artistry of the people who built it, and what it might have witnessed in two centuries of standing there. That’s when I started to ‘hear’ the voice of the wall! More about the project can be found by clicking on the ‘dyke’ label.

‘The Beat of Heart Stones’ by Linda Cracknell, best foot books,
ISBN 978-0-9562453-1-1, £4. Available from The Aberfeldy Watermill, some other local outlets, and direct from my website for £4 inc p&p.

1 comment:

Wigeon said...

Count me in on an order please Linda! Your last wee book was brill. I'll snail mail you a cheque. I have a 'thing' about rocks and stones .....perhaps an illustrators 'thing' with texture?
I hope the wee book goes really well for you.