These Demented Lands

These Demented Lands

by Alan Warner


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After the critical success of his first novel,  Morvern Callar, Alan Warner has written an extraordinary, stirring sequel to Morvern's odyssey, confirming him as one of the most original, uniquely gifted writers to have appeared this decade.

An air-crash investigator haunts the hinterlands of an island--around the isolated honeymoon hot spot, the Drome Hotel--gathering the debris from fallen planes that the islanders have fashioned into makeshift sheds and fences; but what kind of jigsaw is he really assembling as he paces the runway?

A young woman makes landfall on the island, crossing the interior to arrive at the Drome Hotel: desperate, strange--and strangely familiar.

Meanwhile, DJ Cormorant is trying to organize The Big One, a rave on the adjacent airstrip, and from all over These Demented Lands come twisted characters, converging for one final Saturday night at the Drome Hotel.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9780385491464
Publisher: Knopf Doubleday Publishing Group
Publication date: 02/28/1998
Pages: 224
Product dimensions: 5.70(w) x 8.20(h) x 0.59(d)

About the Author

Alan Warner is the author of many novels, including Morvern Callar, These Demented Lands, The Sopranos, and The Stars in the Bright Sky. He currently resides in Edinburgh.

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These Demented Lands 5 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 1 reviews.
Guest More than 1 year ago
These Demented Lands, Alan Warner's second novel is a sequel of sorts to his highly praised first novel, Morvern Callar. These Demented Lands is a dark, eerie, surreal and sometimes hilarious journey into the landscape of postmodern literature. Warner's characters are carefully crafted and highly memorable and posses many of the qualities of archetypes. The novel, itself, is somewhat of a dark and stormy post-apocalyptic fantasy. The book's protagonist is Morvern Callar, herself. As the novel opens, Morvern is swimming away from a sinking ship, a small girl in tow. After returning the child safely home, Morvern begins her own strange journey across the island. Rumors concerning the fate of the other passengers on board the ship abound and, as they do, a host of newcomers descends on the island. Morvern meets, and is immediately attracted to, a mysterious man known only as the Aircrash Investigator. Although he seems to be pillaging the island's makeshift fences and sheds for crash debris, his real purpose is something of a mystery. Warner has peopled his novel with an odd assortment of characters, yet each one is perfect and perfectly-drawn. Besides Morvern, herself, and the Aircrash Investigator, there is Devil's Advocate, a cigar-smoking fat man who assesses candidates for sainthood; there is Brotherhood, the owner of the Drome Hotel, a popular honeymoon resort; and a DJ who is determined to put together the biggest party the island has ever known. The myriad of minor characters that live in the pages of this novel are just as perfect. The prose in These Demented Lands can be difficult at times, especially for those who prefer a more flowing style. Warner, however, is one of the most talented writers now at work and this book is superbly told with Morvern's own independent and unflinching frankness. The dialogue is sometimes as absurd as is the character speaking, but this only enhances the book's believability and its appeal as well as its strangeness. Warner's story does parallel certain Christian myths, in a surreal sort of way, as should soon become apparent, from the characters' strange names, if nothing else. And, although this is a dark book, some of the dialogue is hilariously funny. These Demented Lands is a complex story about complex characters. It is too bad it has been somewhat overlooked in favor of more commercial but far less polished books. Alan Warner is an extraordinarily good writer and These Demented Lands is an extraordinarily good novel.