Hello everyone! It’s day 29 of Blogtober and I am really excited to be sharing the first of many blog tour reviews in the coming days! Today’s post is all about my first read of October – Hallowed Ground by Paul Twivy. As always, a huge thank you to Rachel at Rachel’s Random Resources for organising the tour, of which today is the last day! If you want to read more about the book, I’ll share a full tour list at the end of the post so you can check out the other wonderful bloggers that have taken part in the tour.
Before we get into my thoughts on the book, here are the details: –
Hallowed Ground: The Mystery of the African Fairy Circles
This magical story is inspired by the most haunting and least explored country in the world – Namibia – with its foggy Skeleton Coast, buried goldmines, shocking secrets and awe-inspiring sand dunes.
Spread across the face of its deserts are hundreds of miles of ‘fairy circles’ : vast enough to be seen from space. They grow and die with the same lifespan as humans, yet no-one has been able to explain why or how they appear.
Then one day, three teenagers and their families arrive from different parts of the globe. Helped by bushmen, the buried possessions of a Victorian explorer, and a golden leopard, they solve the mystery of the African Circles. What will be discovered beneath the hallowed ground? And how will it change the future of the planet above it?
I wouldn’t describe myself as a traveller, although I feel hypocritical saying that having just come back from holiday. I’m not the sort of person who experiences wanderlust; however, the descriptions of the beautiful, natural Namibia stirred some of that feeling in me. I much prefer to ‘explore’ from the comfort of my armchair and Hallowed Ground provided the opportunity for that. We get to experience the landscape of Namibia through the eyes of several teenagers who have moved to the country with their parents. The descriptions are vividly beautiful and awe-inspiring. The author’s love for this country really shines through in his writing.
Local culture is also a big part of the book. The story is very much told from the perspective of Western individuals, which makes it easy for the reader to see and understand this completely different attitude, way of life and the beliefs of the people of Namibia. This particularly comes into play after a mass burial site is discovered from genocide, which happened around World War II.
I enjoyed the pace of the book too. The narrative allows plenty of time to traverse the intricacies of the landscape and culture whilst still progressing with a storyline and a mystery that keeps the reader hooked. What causes the natural phenomenon of fairy circles?
I love how different theories are touched upon in the discussions for their science project, which forms only a small part of the book. More so, I liked the ending Paul Twivy gave the story. I hadn’t heard of the phenomenon until I picked up the book, but that doesn’t matter. It is all explained in an uncomplicated manner, and I did actually look into it after reading the book!
For me, Hallowed Ground was a really interesting read with a fun twist to the theory on the causes of African fairy circles and I thoroughly enjoyed the book.
Author Bio –
Paul Twivy studied English at Oxford University and became one of the most famous British admen. He has written comedy and drama for the stage and radio. He edited the bestseller Change the World for a Fiver. He is married with five children. He was inspired to write Hallowed Ground by his first-hand experiences of the extraordinary landscapes and culture of Namibia.