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Ring of Bright Water


This is the story of the author's life in Camusfearna, a wild and remote area of Scotland, and of three otters, Chahala, Mijbil and Edal, who became ... Show synopsis

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Reviews of Ring of Bright Water

Overall customer rating: 5.000

Otters and a man

by Wassermann on Aug 3, 2007

Gavin Maxwell has painted an astounding chapter in his life which is all the more remarkable for the simplicity and modesty with which it is related. His companions, sea otters, are wonderfully shown for the intelligent, sensitive and playful creatures that they are. Tragedy and comedy are skilfully interwoven. His depiction of the main setting, a relatively small area around a tiny house on a bleak shore on the north west coast of Scotland is made all the more poignant by the realisation that this like many such things, has now gone forever. For anyone who loves the wild and loves those who share such feelings this a beautiful read.



by CarolynNeser on Apr 3, 2007

I first read "Ring of Bright Water" as a primary school tot, along with the Gerald Durrel sagas and the "Born Free" trilogy. Unlike "Watership Down" and its lookalikes, Ring of Bright Water does not impose on our credulity by proposing walking talking animal characters. Mijbil, Edal and the other animal characters are far too dignified for that. Neither does Maxwell force the unfolding of his sojourn in the Scottish Highlands into a twee little standard character plot. The stories are real and the characters are human insofar as they are meant to be; otherwise they are immortal as animals whose lives enriched the existence of those whom they touched. Some internet surfing on a biography of Gavin Maxwell would be called for to place this book in a context, both in terms of the Highlands at that time and in terms of the turbulent and sometimes star-crossed life of the author. However, even on its own, "Ring of Bright Water" dances as blindingly and hypnotically as sunlight on the water, and is every bit as hard-edged, freezing and gritty as it must have been to live as a Scottish hermit in the fifties.

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