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Auld Licht Idylls   By: (1860-1937)

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Auld Licht Idylls is a literary gem that warmly transports readers to the charming village of Thrums, Scotland. Authored by J. M. Barrie, this collection of short stories offers an intimate and vivid portrayal of the everyday lives, quirks, and traditions of its inhabitants.

Barrie's masterful storytelling captivates readers from the very beginning, skillfully painting a vivid tapestry of the tight-knit Auld Licht community. Through his words, the village comes alive, and readers are transported to a time when small towns thrived with their own peculiarities and close-knit societies.

The book’s strength lies in its cast of characters, each brought to life with intricate details and unique personalities. From the devotional David and steadfast Micah, to the irascible Rob Dow and whimsical Traquair, Barrie creates a web of characters that feel like old friends. With each successive story, the reader becomes further entwined in the lives and trials of these endearing villagers, laughing with their idiosyncrasies and shedding tears as they face adversity.

Barrie's exceptional talent goes beyond character development; his dexterity in capturing the emotional essence of a moment is truly remarkable. Each story is carefully crafted to feature a moral or teach a lesson, evoking a range of emotions in the reader. From the heart-wrenching sadness of losing a loved one, to the uproarious laughter evoked by a village dispute, Auld Licht Idylls takes readers on a rollercoaster of emotions, leaving an indelible mark on their hearts.

Furthermore, the book's setting plays a vital role in the narrative. Barrie's descriptions transport readers to the windswept, cobbled streets of Thrums, with its small cottages and intimate shops. The vivid imagery creates a sense of nostalgia and yearning for simpler times, leaving the reader yearning to immerse themselves further in this enchanting world.

If there is one criticism to be made, it is that the dialect and language used in Auld Licht Idylls may initially challenge unfamiliar readers. However, Barrie's mastery of language and his ability to immerse the reader in the culture and dialect of Thrums should not be underestimated. As readers become accustomed to the unique speech patterns and idioms, the book becomes all the more immersive and evocative.

In conclusion, Auld Licht Idylls is a true testament to J. M. Barrie's literary prowess. Through engaging narratives and colorful characters, he brings to life the heartwarming and sometimes bittersweet stories of the residents of Thrums. A timeless classic that explores the universal experiences of human connection, loss, and resilience, this book is not to be missed by lovers of literary fiction.

First Page:

The Novels, Tales and Sketches of J. M. Barrie


[Frontispiece: Photograph of J. M. Barrie]

Published in New York by Charles Scribner's Sons 1896

Author's Edition Copyright, 1896, by Charles Scribner's Sons.




This is the only American edition of my books produced with my sanction, and I have special reasons for thanking Messrs. Scribner for its publication; they let it be seen, by this edition, what are my books, for I know not how many volumes purporting to be by me, are in circulation in America which are no books of mine. I have seen several of these, bearing such titles as "Two of Them," "An Auld Licht Manse," "A Tillyloss Scandal," and some of them announce themselves as author's editions, or published by arrangement with the author. They consist of scraps collected and published without my knowledge, and I entirely disown them. I have written no books save those that appear in this edition.

I am asked to write a few lines on the front page of each of these volumes, to say something, as I take it, about how they came into being. Well, they were written mainly to please one woman who is now dead, but as I am writing a little book about my mother I shall say no more of her here.

Many of the chapters in "Auld Licht Idylls" first appeared in a different form in the St... Continue reading book >>

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