Down the Common: A Novel

Front Cover
M. Evans and Company, 1996 - Fiction - 234 pages
4 Reviews
Month by month, as if in stanzas, Ann Baer composes a plainsong in celebration of the daily life of one woman in the world of Medieval England. Hunger, cold, brutal back-breaking work and worry fail to blind Marion, the carpenter's wife, to the magic all around her - the clean and holy smell of an empty church, a surprising aquamarine sky on a cold day, the firelight filling the dark Manor hall at the Christmas Feast, a splash of honey in which the color of the sun is trapped. Gifted with seeing beauty, Marion, like generations of women before and after, becomes her village's salvation because she gratefully receives the bounty, good and bad, of the world in which she lives. In this beautiful, evocative novel Marion is everywoman: steadfast survivor, gentle accommodator, strong and flexible reed. She defines and celebrates Woman, then as now, as the heart of the community.

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User Review  - Jane Doe - Kirkus

More a feat of historical imagination than a conventional novel, this 82-year-old author's first fiction presents a year in the life of a rural peasant in medieval England. Marion, wife of Peter ... Read full review

LibraryThing Review

User Review  - DeltaQueen50 - LibraryThing

More a series of beautifully descriptive anecdotes than a novel, Down The Common: A Year In The Life of A Medieval Woman by Ann Baer was a delightful read. The book is divided by the months of the ... Read full review

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