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Summary

The moles of Duncton Wood live in the shadow of Mandrake, a cruel tyrant corrupted by absolute power.

A solitary young mole, Bracken, is thrown into leading the fight to free Duncton Wood. Only by putting his trust in the ancient Stone, forgotten symbol of a great spiritual past, can he find the strength to challenge Mandrake's darkness.

When Bracken falls in love with Rebecca, Mandrake's daughter, the moles must make life and death choices as their extraordinary search for freedom and truth begins....

Together Bracken and Rebecca will embark on moving journey that will challenge them in ways they could never have imagined. But can they save Duncton before it's too late?

Duncton Wood is the first instalment in The Duncton Chronicles, an unforgettable six-book series now widely regarded as a fantasy classic. For fans of J. R. R. Tolkien, Brian Jacques and Richard Adams' Watership Down, this is a quest into the heart of nature, the redemptive power of love and the triumph of spirit.

©1980 William Horwood (P)2018 Audible, Ltd

What listeners say about Duncton Wood

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  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
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Silance of the Stone

I read these books when they first came out and was captivated. As a naturalist and folklorist, the mix of mythology and sound natural history of moles held my attention through six VERY long books. Revisiting the series as audiobooks I was worried they would not live up to my memory or an inappropriate narrator would be chosen. Audible has done the books proud, the narrator is perfect with convincing accents - Mayweed, in book 2, is exactly as I imagined him. I hope Audible provide the second trilogy, along with other William Horwood books - especially Stonor Eagles.

22 people found this helpful

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Magical read

I first read this book as a young adult and it has stayed with me throughout my life. It was the first book that made me cry and laugh outwardly. I was a little afraid to re-read it ( or listen to it ) as I thought it might not live up to its magic but thankfully it did.
I laughed, cried, gasped, fought, hoped and loved with every word.
I loved this book and I still do.

12 people found this helpful

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Romantic Moles and Sweet Spirituality

Made me cry spontaneously on more than one occasion, not because I was sad but because this novel has so many moments of transcendental beauty! Gorgeous and heartfelt descriptions of the countryside, of the deep felt mystery of ancient spaces and of the real power found in compassion and faith. It is no small feat to be able to convey complex and spiritual tone in language, but Horwood does it with such ease, I felt he was the true master of the silence of the stone. Read this!

8 people found this helpful

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Great epic of Love, pain, hope and moles!

This is a book for adults not children. There is death, murder and worse! But ultimately it is a super epic that will leave you wanting to read the next book in the series.

7 people found this helpful

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Brilliantly Done

Well done Gareth Armsrong such a Brilliant Narration of Book one of the Duncton chronicles. I listened avidly to every chapter and even though I have read some of the Duncton chronicles Gareth brought the love of the Book to life I cannot wait for Duncton Quest, and Duncton Found then hopefully the Duncton Tales,Duncton Rising and Duncton Stone I will buy every one if or as they appear I applaud you William Horwood for your love of mole and their lifetime and struggles of the silence of the stone thankyou. And thankyou for the fantastic and loving Narration Gareth Armstrong.

5 people found this helpful

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Great in spells but too drawn out.

There are at least four, maybe five sections of this book which are superbly well written and genuinely gripping. The occurrence of these at regular intervals kept me interested but I felt that the book fell off the rails inbetween. It could have been half the length and not suffered for it, while it also kind of peetered out at the end. I didn't dislike this book but will not continue the series.

3 people found this helpful

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Dull and drawn out

I love Watership down so jumped at the chance to listen to this book. The positive reviews spurred me on and I went in with great expectations.

However, what is presented is a very long, dull, meandering story that tries to excite but falls flat.

With Watwrship Down, the story was metaphorical but they were most definitely rabbits, acted like rabbits and spoke like rabbits. With Runcton Wood I was left wondering why exactly they were moles in the first place. It added nothing to the story and nothing in their behaviour reflected that of real moles. They could have been a tribe, or a school of tuna and the story wouldn't have changed in the slightest

I think the main issue is that the characters just don't grasp you, which is odd in such a long book. It felt like the book had ended three times and you find yourself thinking 'huh... Well that wasn't that great' and then it just seems to keep going. So much so that I'll be honest, by the second half I was resenting how drawn out it was and I was just hoping the moles would die already so the book would end.

It's a great concept looking at religion in society and how faith and lack of can have both positive and negative affects but in my opinion, was executed poorly. I was also left with the uncomfortable feeling that the only reason any of these characters were moles was to jump on the Watwrship Down band wagon yet the writer clearly has done zero research on actual moles.

Left disappointed and feeling like I wasted a credit.

2 people found this helpful

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The spirit of Tolkien set within the world of mole

Masterful penmanship weaves a story as epic in scope, scale and spirit as Tolkien superb

2 people found this helpful

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Far too much padding and religion

To me this doesn't work as either allegory or fantasy. It doesn't particularly represent the real world or real events, except in the most general terms, but is at the same time too rooted in the real world to work well as fantasy.

But the main problem I have is that the book could easily have been 1/3 of the length without losing anything other than a load of padding. In particular, the second half of the book is so padded that it could have been edited into just a few chapters.

The religion of the moles starts off fairly unintrusive but by the end comes to dominate the story and becomes really tedious.

Some have compared it to Watership Down, Lord of the Rings and Wind in the Willows but to me that comparison doesn't stand scrutiny, all are fantasy and two of them involve anthropomorphic animals but there the comparison ends.

1 person found this helpful

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So slow so slow...

Thought "Moles" was slang in this world for underdwellers or maybe a type of hobbit... Nope... Real moles... and this being not a childhood favourite there is no way I can sit through 27 hours of a story about... Moles

1 person found this helpful