The Gift of Stones

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Overview

Set before the advent of the Bronze Age, The Gift of Stones centers around a community of stoneworkers who live in a village near the sea. Wealthy and complacent, they survive by the trade of their unrivaled skills, secure in the supremacy of their craftsmenship. A small boy, outcast by misfortune, ventures from the confines of the enclave to explore the unknown. He returns with enchanting tales of ships and the seashore, of new vistas and horizons, that beguile and disturb the villagers. In spite of his words ...

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Overview

Set before the advent of the Bronze Age, The Gift of Stones centers around a community of stoneworkers who live in a village near the sea. Wealthy and complacent, they survive by the trade of their unrivaled skills, secure in the supremacy of their craftsmenship. A small boy, outcast by misfortune, ventures from the confines of the enclave to explore the unknown. He returns with enchanting tales of ships and the seashore, of new vistas and horizons, that beguile and disturb the villagers. In spite of his words and intuitive wisodm, the stoneworkers remain oblivious to the winds of change beginning to blow in the outside world. Until, that is, the storyteller brings back to the village a strange and angry woman whose presence foretells the coming of metal, the end of stone, and the demise of their way of life.

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Editorial Reviews

Library Journal
If Crace's name is not yet familiar to American readers, it soon should be. This 42-year-old Englishman's second work continues in the imaginative and almost poetic vein of his Continent ( LJ 3/1/87). Once again he creates a world, in this case a Stone Age village, seemingly distant from our own and yet so like it as to be almost frightening. It is a world confronting change brought on by the advent of bronze, a technological development not unlike the coming of the computer. The villagers, once secure and flourishing, suddenly find their craft--and themselves--obsolete. As the fabulist tale unwinds, Crace looks into the role of the artist in society--here, a storyteller--considering both the impact and limits of imagination in guiding us toward new horizons. A marvelous literary effort; highly recommended.-- David W. Henderson, Eckerd Coll. Lib., St. Petersburg, Fla.
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780880014502
  • Publisher: HarperCollins Publishers
  • Publication date: 5/28/1996
  • Pages: 184
  • Sales rank: 546,730
  • Product dimensions: 5.37 (w) x 8.25 (h) x 0.41 (d)

Meet the Author

Jim Crace is the author of Continent, The Gift of Stones, and Arcadia. He has won the Whitbread First Novel Prize, the David Higham Prize, and the Guardian Fiction Award. He lives in Birmingham, England.
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