Read My Swordhand is Singing by Marcus Sedgwick Online


An original interpretation of the timelessly fascinating vampire myth, and a story of father and son, by award winning author Marcus Sedgwick Winner of the Booktrust Teenage Prize and shortlisted for the Carnegie Medal.In the bitter cold of an unrelenting winter, Tomas and his son, Peter, arrive in Chust Despite the villagers lack of hospitality, they settle there as woodcutters But there are many things Peter does not understand Why does Tomas dig a channel of fast flowing waters around their hut so they live on an isolated island Why does Tomas carry a long battered box everywhere they go and refuse to tell Peter of its contents When a band of gypsies comes to the village, Peter s drab existence is turned upside down He is infatuated by the beautiful gypsy princess, Sofia, and intoxicated by her community s love of life He even becomes drawn into their deadly quest for these travellers are Vampire Slayers, and Chust is a community to which the dead return to wreak revenge on the living Stylishly written and set in the forbidding and remote landscapes of the 17th century, this is a story of a father and his son, of loss, redemption and resolution....

Title : My Swordhand is Singing
Author :
Rating :
ISBN : 1842555588
ISBN13 : 978-1842555583
Format Type : PDF
Language : Englisch
Publisher : Orion Children s Books 3 Mai 2007
Number of Pages : 240 Seiten
File Size : 668 KB
Status : Available For Download
Last checked : 21 Minutes ago!

My Swordhand is Singing Reviews

  • TeensReadToo
    2019-05-27 00:56

    Marcus Sedgwick's MY SWORDHAND IS SINGING is a dark novel with a heavy emphasis on thick, snowy forests of Eastern Europe, gypsies, and superstitious town folk. It is the perfect setting for a scary story, but it is also much, much more.Tomas and his teenage son, Peter, are a pair of traveling woodcutters with a mysterious past that settle down in the village of Chust one winter. Before long a string a deaths strike the village. Peter is perturbed by the villagers' strange reactions to the occurrences. When he asks Tomas about them, his father brushes away his questions as silly folk lore. However, Tomas is also doing his own share of strange things, like digging a trench around their home and filling it with moving water. When Agnes, a girl Peter likes, is symbolically married to a dead man and shut up in a remote hut, Peter tries to rescue her and runs into a monster.Sedgwick takes pains to distance his tale from the gentleman bloodsucker that Anne Rice and authors like her have embedded into pop culture. The word "vampire" is never mentioned and the vampires, themselves, have varying appearances throughout the novel. He does a great job at weaving various and sometimes seemingly paradoxical pieces of folk lore. This gives the story a great sense of immediacy and realism. Sedgwick also shifts the focus from vampires to people who have to deal with terrifying occurrences at home. The buildup of the growing atmosphere of fear and denial will have readers biting their fingernails.Marcus Sedgwick seems to take a lot of risks in writing this atypical, historically rich vampire novel. Central to the story line is not the relationship between a human and vampire or a girl and a boy (a la Buffy and Angel), but a wounded relationship between father and son. While this may seem terribly uncool, the realism of this relationship is what grounds the novel and makes the more fantastical elements more believable and scary.Reviewed by: Natalie Tsang

  • Mark O'Neill
    2019-06-12 23:44

    I have to admit it took me a while to get into this book and I almost gave up on it. The problem is that the setting is rather gloomy and depressing and you really need to concentrate and perservere on the story. But if you persist and not give up, it's actually quite a good story.Tomas and his son Peter are wandering labourers who settle in the village of Chust as woodcutters. As soon as they arrive, they realise that all is not well about town. Lots of people in the village have met untimely and mysterious deaths and the others don't want to talk about it. Peter meanwhile has his eye on one of the local girls, Agnes, but he is devastated when one of the village Elders decrees that Agnes is to be "married" to one of the murder victims as the dead man cannot be buried unmarried (due to local tradition).Peter soon realises that Agnes is one of many people that have been targeted by the Undead - the murdered victims who rise from their graves at night. With the help of a band of gypsies and also from his father and a powerful sword, Peter fights back against the Undead in an attempt to save the woman he loves.

  • Kindle Customer
    2019-05-25 04:45

    Peter and his father Tomas arrive at a remote village plagued with mysterious deaths. At first Peter is confused when he father builds a moat around their small woodcutter's hut but soon Peter realizes that a vampire is hunting the woods searching for new victims. This novel opens with a gruesome attack on a woodcutter. These are not romantic "Twilight" vampires. Sedgwick uses the Eastern European legends of the nosferatu and vurkodlak: monsters who are considered diseases in human form. The novel is filled with strange superstitious rituals such as the Miorita where a young woman is forcibly married to unmarried man who has been killed and shut away in a hut outside the village. The relationship between Peter and his father is intense and Tomas is an alcoholic haunted by his past. Peter learns how his father's history as a warrior as marked his life and must make the decision whether to follow in his footsteps. Scary but very complex and moving as well. Marcus Sedgwick is a personal favourite who approaches horror and supernatural subjects with inteligence and peoples his works with unique characters and situations. The sequel "Kiss of Death" is equally frightening as well.

  • celticriver
    2019-05-19 02:05

    i was quite surprized at the fierceness of tension and action the author put to page. it's a vampire story where the word "vampire" is never said. and these are not your "twilight" type vampires--attractive, brooding, and romantic. actually, they behave more like ghouls than vamps, but a good story it was nonetheless. the prose was incredibly literate: "there was nothing for Tomas now . . .just the sword, which flew so fast that the air itself was cut in two." there is also a moral to the story--that you reap only heartbreak and despair when you deny your destiny.

  • claude franklin
    2019-06-13 07:12

    I enbjoyed readin g this book it was interesting and it kept me spell bound thoughout the book maybe more

  • Raya Tuffaha
    2019-06-19 07:05

    Pretty good book. A little morbid, so not a late-night read, but fast paced, thrilling and fun

  • R. M. Fisher
    2019-06-16 02:08

    Are you sick of wannabe vampires who sparkle instead of self-combust in the sunlight and who mope around high-schools instead of stalking the terrified living in order to slake their never-ending thirst for blood? I know I am, which is why I thoroughly enjoyed Marcus Sedgewick's "My Swordhand is Singing," a vampire tale that does away with modern interpretations of lovelorn emo-vamps and instead draws upon the oldest known records of these creatures in order to shape its chilling story.Set in Eastern Europe (most likely Transylvania, though this is never specified) in the early 17th century, Peter and his father Tomas have only recently settled on the outskirts of the village of Chust, lending their services as woodcutters, and are still treated as outsiders by the suspicious villagers. To be fair, the behaviour of Tomas is strange enough to warrant their attention. Not only a heavy drinker, Tomas has built his house on the fork of a river and dug a channel that connects the two adjourning streams so that he and his son live on a man-made island.Peter is somewhat embarrassed by his father's behaviour, especially since he has his eye on a pretty village girl called Agnes, and neither does he understand why his father carries around a long wooden box that Peter is never allowed to open.But stranger things are happening in the village of Chust. Livestock has gone missing, and there are reports of the recently dead visiting their loved ones at night. There is a spate of unusual deaths that have the community on a knife's edge, and the arrival of a band of gypsies does little to assuage the tension. Peter becomes increasingly aware that his own father knows more than he's letting on about the circumstances, and helped by a young gypsy girl, he pits himself against the supernatural threat that is running amuck in the surrounding forests."My Swordhand is Singing" is a vampire story with a difference - the difference being that it is so traditional. Heroes are armed with weapons and folklore. Vampires are bloated corpses which exist only to prey on the living. Both are trying to kill the other for the sake of basic survival. The action takes place in dark forests, snow-covered cemeteries and medieval villages, and Sedgewick draws on extensive research to enrich the creepy atmosphere with 17th century customs and beliefs, such as the burning of straw effigies dressed in the clothes of the departed to prevent their return, or the macabre practice of symbolically wedding a young girl to an unmarried corpse to ensure that he'll be probably mourned.Expect no love story here; at least not between a human and a vampire. The key relationship lies between a father and son who are estranged despite their close living quarters, and the main character arc is Peter's gradual understanding of his father's reliance on drink and closed-mouth stoicism.The prose is simple and sparse, but somehow remains incredibly evocative of the Eastern forests and chilly landscapes, and Sedgewick is a master of gradually ratcheting up the suspense page after page until its nail-biting conclusion. It is a reasonably slender volume with very short chapters (some only a page long) and a swift pace, so there's a good chance you could get it read in one sitting. Not everything works out accordingly: Sofia the gypsy girl seemed a little underdeveloped, and there is an oft-repeated song that doesn't really have the payoff or satisfactory explanation that it should.But altogether, this is a refreshingly old-fashioned take on the widely-used vampire genre, and as such is a much stronger and more potent tale that successfully taps into our fear of night, death, and things that go bump in the night. Though completely self-contained, it was followed by a sequel, the more generically titled: