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Summary

Clover Stroud's idyllic childhood in rural England was shattered when a horrific riding accident left her mother permanently brain damaged. Just 16, she embarked on a journey to find the sense of home that had been so savagely broken. Travelling from gypsy camps in Ireland to the rodeos of West Texas and then to Russia's war-torn Caucasus, Clover eventually found her way back to England's lyrical Vale of the White Horse.

The Wild Other is a grippingly honest account of love, loss, family and the healing strength of nature. Powerful and deeply emotional, this is the story of an extraordinary life lived at its fullest.

©2017 Clover Stroud (P)2017 Hodder & Stoughton

What listeners say about The Wild Other

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  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars

A wild ride

This is a compelling, at times distressing memoir. The author was just 16 when her mother suffers a devastating riding accident. Although not a single bone is broken she's never able to communicate with her family again and spends the next 22 years mostly in residential care.

It would be enough to dissuade many people from ever getting in the saddle again but instead the teenage Clover leans in to the danger that horses now symbolise. Spells trading gypsy horses in Ireland and as a ranch-hand soon follow as well as a rather peculiar liaison with a circus performer in Chechnya.

Ultimately this is a life-affirming account of a life thoroughly well-lived in spite of or because of the intense trauma and grief of the accident. The book raises difficult questions about whether it is always better that a person escape death, and also the shocking decisions made by our care system.

Stroud doesn't mention that one sister is pottery queen Emma Bridgewater and another is Nell Gifford founder of the circus. Knowing this did make me marvel at the inner drive their mother must have given them before tragedy struck. Beautifully narrated too.

4 people found this helpful

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A good listen

I really enjoyed this audiobook , it is well narrated and flows well. The authors life is interesting but often really focuses upon horses which lost my concentration at times. However do not be put off this is a good engaging book.

3 people found this helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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Excellent book, raw with emotion

Well narrated true story which is very readable (listenable!). If you have a love of horses even better as they are threaded through Clovers life.

2 people found this helpful

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  • D.
  • 23-06-17

Incredibly honest

What made the experience of listening to The Wild Other the most enjoyable?

The honesty with which Stroud tells her true feelings

Who was your favorite character and why?

Clover Stroud as above

What about Esther Wane’s performance did you like?

Clear and unaffected

If you made a film of this book, what would be the tag line be?

Thrill seeker

Any additional comments?

Amazing strength of personality and character to experience just what she has.

1 person found this helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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Brilliant story

Fantastically narrated. Clover transports you to her world with incredible writing. Story of horses love loss growing up.

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Raw and tender and full of life

Powerful memoir of grief and growth and travelling on, even while looking back. 80s and 90s rural English middle class bohemian childhood, unravelled by tragedy, and lives remade with consciousness of the profound power of that experience. Clear voice and vivid description, poignant and self examining. Deft narration.

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A bit too self indulgent for my taste

Whilst I acknowledge the awful effects of her mother’s accident (and I am more than familiar with family trauma), I found her references to poverty juxtaposed with her designer labels, house in Oxford, horses and extensive travel somewhat laughable. It all just felt a bit immature and self indulgent. I didn’t enjoy it and skipped through much of it.

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Beautiful, Raw and Poignant

I loved this memoir, I highly recommended this lyrical meditation on love, loss and landscape.

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I love Clover Stroud’s writing !

I first read my wild sleepless nights and then I absolutely devoured my wild other. Her life story is captivating and I am a huge fan of horses myself. Reading this book made me reflect on many of my own life experiences and so took me on several journeys simultaneously.

Clover has a way of writing that makes me feel as though I’m right there beside her, seeing what she sees and feeling what she feels. I love her books as a form of escapism and also therapy!

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A beautifully raw, honest and relatable memoir

If you have experienced trauma and the perpetual impact it has on your life, in both good times and bad, this book will resonate deeply with you.
Clover’s reminiscence of her happy childhood, her bond with her mother, her sibling relationships, the power of her connection with horses, is exquisitely expressed in this wonderful book. Her life takes her on so many adventures, throughout every one of them she learns to deal with the haunting and deep rooted trauma that tethers her wherever she goes.
This book made me reflect on my own relationships with family, and what I should be grateful for. Her descriptions of the rural contexts she finds herself profoundly bound to, are so tangible, you feel you need to go there and experience them too.
I couldn’t love this book more, as a daughter, mother, sister and wife, it resonated deeply with me. As someone who also wears the internal scar of trauma, it was an extremely cathartic experience listening to her story.