Ghostways: Two Journeys in Unquiet Places (Paperback)
A hauntingly beautiful diptych of works inspired by Robert Macfarlane’s travels with celebrated collaborators to two eerie corners of England.
In Holloway, "a perfect miniature prose-poem" (William Dalrymple), Macfarlane, artist Stanley Donwood, and writer Dan Richards travel to Dorset, near the south coast of England, to explore a famed "hollowed way"—a path used by walkers and riders for so many centuries that it has become worn far down into the soft golden bedrock of the region.
In Ness, "a triumphant libretto of mythic modernism for our poisoned age" (Max Porter), Macfarlane and Donwood create a modern myth about Orford Ness, the ten-mile-long shingle spit that lies off the coast of East Anglia, which the British government used for decades to conduct secret weapons tests.
Stanley Donwood is a graphic designer and artist who has worked with the band Radiohead, producing artwork for their albums and promotional materials. His books include Bad Island, Catacombs of Terror!, Slowly Downward, Small Thoughts, and There Will Be No Quiet. He lives in London.
Dan Richards is author of several books including The Beechwood Airship Interviews and Climbing Days. Outpost: A Journey to the Wild Ends of the Earth was published by Canongate in 2019. He writes for various papers and magazines including The Guardian, Economist, and Monocle, and lives in Edinburgh.
— David L. Ulin - Los Angeles Times
These stories convey [Macfarlane’s] talent for elevating even modest wonders with sincere attention….Macfarlane approaches the natural world with humility and a deep appreciation for the spirits that haunt a landscape.
— Emily Borrow - Wall Street Journal
[A]n almost-too-fitting natural history for …Ghostways is designed to evoke more than inform, and often echoes what you bring to it…
— Genevieve Valentine - NPR
A lovely evocation of some 'spectral and unreal' elements of the British landscape.
— Kirkus Reviews (starred review)