Click here to skip to this page's main content.

New to the Open Library? — Learn how it works
Last edited by EdwardBot
November 4, 2011 | History

The quickening maze 5 editions

Cover of: The quickening maze by Adam Foulds
About the Book

Based on real events in Epping Forest on the edge of London around 1840, The Quickening Maze centres on the first incarceration of the great nature poet John Clare. After years struggling with alcohol, critical neglect and depression, Clare finds himself in High Beach Private Asylum - an institution run on reformist principles which would later become known as occupational therapy. At the same time another poet, the young Alfred Tennyson, moves nearby and becomes entangled in the life and catastrophic schemes of the asylum's owner, the peculiar, charismatic Dr Matthew Allen.Based on real events in Epping Forest on the edge of London around 1840, The Quickening Maze centres on the first incarceration of the great nature poet John Clare. After years struggling with alcohol, critical neglect and depression, Clare finds himself in High Beach Private Asylum - an institution run on reformist principles which would later become known as occupational therapy. At the same time another poet, the young Alfred Tennyson, moves nearby and becomes entangled in the life and catastrophic schemes of the asylum's owner, the peculiar, charismatic Dr Matthew Allen.For John Clare, a man who had grown up steeped in the freedoms and exhilarations of nature, who thought 'the edge of the world was a day's walk away', a locked door is a kind of death. This intensely lyrical novel describes his vertiginous fall, through hallucinatory episodes of insanity and dissolving identity, towards his final madness.Historically accurate, but brilliantly imagined, the closed world of High Beach and its various inmates - the doctor, his lonely daughter in love with Tennyson, the brutish staff and John Clare himself - are brought vividly to life. Outside the walls is Nature, and Clare's paradise: the birds and animals, the gypsies living in the forest; his dream of home, of redemption, of escape. Rapturous yet precise, exquisitely written, rich in character and detail, this is a remarkable and deeply affecting book: a visionary novel which contains a world.

Times

Lists

You could add The quickening maze to a list if you log in.

5 editions First published in 2009

Edition Read Borrow Buy
Cover of: The Quickening Maze
2009, Random House Publishing Group
The Quickening Maze
Electronic resource in English
Cover of: The quickening maze
2009, Jonathan Cape
The quickening maze
in English
Cover of: The Quickening Maze
November 3, 2009, Vintage Canada
The Quickening Maze
Paperback
Cover of: The quickening maze
2009, Jonathan Cape
The quickening maze
in English
Cover of: The quickening maze
2010, Penguin Books
The quickening maze
in English

History Created March 16, 2010 · 4 revisions Download catalog record: RDF / JSON

November 4, 2011 Edited by EdwardBot remove 'in fiction' subjects
June 17, 2010 Edited by ImportBot add details from OverDrive
April 28, 2010 Edited by Open Library Bot Linked existing covers to the work.
March 16, 2010 Created by WorkBot work found