She says that poetry is what happens when language becomes impossible. If you’ve never read her – get this collection now.
Jeanette Winterson, Guardian, Book of the Year
[A] modern classic.
Jeremy Noel-Tod, Sunday Times, Book of the Year
A miraculous collection.
Kate Kellaway, Observer, Book of the Year
A liminal text… Unmistakably original.
Craig Raine, Times Literary Supplement, Book of the Year
A sublime poet of the natural world.
Rupert Thomson, Herald, Book of the Year
An astonishing book of beauty, intensity and poise – a revelation…The collection’s title is spot on. I cannot think of any poet who is more watchful or with a greater sense of gravity.
Kate Kellaway, Observer
Stunning. Is she now our greatest living poet[?]… Her work is commanding… She is less twinkly-eyed than Simon Armitage, more committed to experimentation than Duffy and just as playful…as Don Paterson. For sheer, sustained invention and intellectual rigour, her work is perhaps closest to Kei Miller… If there’s any justice in the poetry world, the title [Poet Laureate] should be offered to this gardener-classicist who is bringing the British landscape to life in poetry again.
Charlotte Runcie, Daily Telegraph
The pieces included here are held together by Oswald’s luminous, almost alien powers of observation.
Yasmine Seale, Literary Review
Magic, the music of nature, the resurrection of the dead: all these feel real when you read Alice Oswald. Her stunning new collection deserves the Forward Prize.
[It] confirms her as one of the most gifted English poets of the past 20 years.
Jeremy Noel-Todd, Sunday Times
She is a classicist and a gardener, an expert in the epic tradition and a riverside wanderer… Falling Awake provides the notation for an immersive aural experience; its current existence as a printed collection is not the incarnation for which it will be most celebrated, should Oswald choose to record it as a performance… It is certainly a strong contender in this year’s Forward Prizes, and a highly compelling meditation upon transience.
Phil Brown, Huffington Post
She not only makes some startlingly original imaginative leaps, but also manages to find the word to describe the scene when she lands.
Roger Cox, Scotland on Sunday
It does not disappoint… Fierce in the quality of her attention, often metaphorically dazzling, Oswald earns our trust through her authority.
Fiona Sampson, Guardian
Falling Awake continues to mine a fresh, inventive seam of observational poetry, tuned in to revelation and a feeling for those moments when the world seems to become strangely, truly itself. Oswald’s best poems bear comparison with D. H. Lawrence’s late work.
John McAuliffe, Irish Times
[It is] Terrific.
Mark Ford, Times Literary Supplement, Book of the Year
A gorgeous collection incorporating mythology and the everyday in nature… [Oswald’s is] a rare and beautiful voice.
Clare Mulley, Skinny, Book of the Year
Here we find an intriguing poet with a distinctive voice and an eye for those fascinating collisions between the ordinary and the poetic… Falling Awake is distinguished particularly by the sheer brilliance of Oswald’s expression. Simple images are transformed by the perfect cadence, the perfect assonance to create an image… It is the mark of a truly skilled versifier that their greatest strength be the one that we might most expect in a poet, yet which is so rare – the ability to craft a verse that captures an image and elevates it by revealing its poetry.
Dan Etches, Oxford Student
Making it onto The Forward Prize for Best Collection Shortlist, it does not disappoint when it described the beauty of birds and insects. Keep it in your bag for bus journeys.
Culture Whisper, Book of the Year
Falling Awake is easily one of the most accomplished collections of the past few years.
Leaf Arbuthnot, The Times
An absolute delight, with each carefully crafted line a revelation. Just try reading the lines out loud, and wait for the magic to catch you.
Western Morning News