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  • Published: 9 May 2024
  • ISBN: 9781529197471
  • Imprint: Transworld Digital
  • Format: EBook
  • Pages: 336


Faced with the sudden prospect of uprooting her young children to move to the US, while her eldest fly the nest to university, the acclaimed memoirist and nature writer considers what home means, and what ties us to the places we love.

What is it that makes a home? What is a home without the roots that tie you to a place? What is a home when a family is split?

Clover's eldest children are leaving home for university. Her husband Pete's work is in America. The only way for Clover and the younger children to live with him is to uproot, leave their rural life near the ancient Ridgeway in Oxfordshire and move to Washington DC. Forced to leave the home she loves and consider these questions, Clover sets out to explore the place where she lives, walk the Ridgway, understand a little of the history of her landscape and work out why it is that it is so hard for her to go. In doing so she paints a beautifully layered portrait of family, community and of belonging in a landscape that has drawn people to it for generation after generation.

  • Published: 9 May 2024
  • ISBN: 9781529197471
  • Imprint: Transworld Digital
  • Format: EBook
  • Pages: 336

About the author

Clover Stroud

Clover Stroud is a writer and journalist writing for the Daily Mail, Sunday Times, Daily Telegraph and Conde Nast Traveller among others. She lives in Oxfordshire with her husband and five children. Her first book, The Wild Other, was shortlisted for The Wainwright Prize.

Also by Clover Stroud

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Praise for Home

Clover Stroud is expert at bringing her reader right to the heart of her longing. Her writing is intimate and warm, honest and generous. A true memoirist, she looks to people and place as her canvas, in this case the psychic and physical hold of the landscape and what we call home. The Giant on the Skyline is timeless and yet firmly rooted in time, magical and mysterious and yet earthy and sensual. It is full of personality, humour and heart and I did not want it to end.

Lily Dunn, author of Sins of My Father

In this new giant of a book, perhaps Clover’s most profound and moving, and unquestionably her most soaringly beautiful, Clover Stroud confronts the wrench from a place that might define her and shows how the resounding power of love tethers the soul.

Juliet Nicolson, author of Frostquake

I can’t remember the last time I underlined so much and folded down so many pages in a book the way I have with this. What a wonderful, wise, magical book. I’ve loved all Clover Stroud’s books but The Giant on the Skyline is really quite incredible.

Rachael Lucas, author of The Cottage on the Shore

Clover has turned her truth-seeing gaze on a tiny corner of the English landscape. This book is drenched in some of the most brilliant writing about place I’ve read in a long while. It’s as evocative as Laurie Lee, chalked up with Clover’s incisive, poetic encounters with magic, pain and belonging. A beautiful book, written in lyrical, liquid prose that seems to flow straight from the heart to the page.

Sophy Roberts, author of Lost Pianos of Siberia

I was captivated by the intimacy of Clover’s writing about home, and what it means to her. The honesty and creativity with which she mines her life and heart are inspirational on so many levels. I sat down to read a chapter or two, and finished almost the entire book in a sitting - somehow this is what always happens to me with Clover’s work. Few writers I know have this intense intimacy, or such an immediately engaging effect on a reader. It really is magic.

Lucy Atkins, author of Windmill Hill

Clover is a remarkable storyteller with an uncanny ability to burrow beneath the surface of the everyday and illuminate the hidden places of the human heart. Written in characteristically lucid prose and with endearing honesty, The Giant on the Skyline is a vivid and captivating book about what it means to belong to a place – and still find the courage to leave it.

Dr Sharon Blackie, author of If Women Rose Rooted

Stroud's best book yet: candid, primal, irresistibly intense ... her feeling for life, death, place and family makes you want to follow her anywhere.

Julie Myerson, author of The Lost Child and Home

Stroud's new book is somehow able make the domestic magical, the ancient present, and the specific meaningful to us all. Her liquid prose is shot through with threads of gold, which pull us towards a deeper, richer understanding of something so many of us are searching for as she uncovers it for herself. In her quest to put into words this ephemeral place called ‘home’, this book will leave you feeling like you have journeyed not just with Stroud, but with giants.

Sarah Langford, author of In Your Defence and Rooted

I loved this powerful, poetic exploration of our connections to both place and people, the ties that bind us to the earth and each other, those that tear us apart and bring us back together. A moving, beautifully written journey through both physical and emotional terrains - from the ancient Ridgeway trail in England to Washington USA, and through love, rage and courage - as the author shares her search for a sense of home and explores both the pain and adventure of leaving home and creating a new one. I lapped up this lyrical meditation on landscape, love and learning to belong.

Anita Sethi, author of I Belong Here: a Journey Along the Backbone of Britain

Magical, heart-and-soul writing. Clover Stroud is sharing a conversation with land that resonates in my very bones.

Amy Jane Beer, author of The Flow

This incredibly special book will make you think of all the places and people you have ever called home. A beautiful, reflective memoir about how we make sense of who we are and how our favourite parts of the world will always be carried within us.

Emma Gannon

No one writes so vividly, or movingly, about the beauties and perils of family, home, and what it means to belong. The Giant on the Skyline is a gloriously immersive read, and one to which I know I will return again and again.

Katie Hickman, novelist, historian and travel writer

Clover’s writing just gets more interesting and I loved this fluid, trippy book about what places give to us and what we bring to places.

Amy Liptrot, author of The Outrun and The Instant

One of the books we're most looking forward to in 2024: I'm a huge fan of Clover Stroud's writing and this memoir about home and what it means to us sounds fascinating.

Good Housekeeping

The Giant on the Skyline is electric, brilliant and full of revelations. Clover is the queen of sharp, enchanting writing; red hot with the truth of how it feels to be alive. A book that will make you look at the everyday magic and pain of home with new wonder.

Rebecca Schiller, author of Earthed

I loved this book about leaving home and how to make one. I'm in awe of Clover's emotional clarity: how she can summon on the page all the complexity and intensity of life in all its forms. She writes with force, power, and a radical transparency. It's a gift"

Cal Flynn, author of Islands of Abandonment

Clover Stroud is one of my favourite writers and The Giant on the Skyline is easily my favourite of her books. Her prose is so lucid - seemingly effortless - whether she is describing the dynamics of her family life, the precise, piercing nature of loss and grief, or her fierce love for the corner of England she has chosen to make her home. She moves from the quotidian to the mystical and back again with such ease, such openness: a beautiful, transformative work of art.

Anna Hope, author of Expectation and The Ballroom

There is magic in Clover Stroud's writing. The Giant on the Skyline finds Stroud at the height of her powers of observation and articulation, a beautifully elucidated exploration of land and place, care and interdependence, woven with existential truths and layers of attention and noticing. Lyrical and sharp, this book is a gift.

Lucy Jones, author of Losing Eden

I’m blown away by Clover’s writing. So impressive, inspiring, fluid, honest and resonant.’

James Aldred, author of Goshawk Summer, winner of the Wainright Prize for Nature Writing

I will read anything Stroud writes and this new memoir is as raw, open and thoughtful as her previous books.

Good Housekeeping

Stroud captures raw emotion, capturing themes of adventure, grief and the healing power of nature. Her latest book is a heartfelt meditation on what makes a home.

Woman & Home

Stroud writes gloriously… a deeply thoughtful exploration of the meaning of home and belonging.

i News

Perhaps more than any other writer, Stroud has taken the elegant, elliptical memoir and forged it into the genre of life writing … In the Giant on the Skyline, Stroud has produced something exceptional: a mystical meditatation on what home means and what constitutes belonging … It is magical and haunting and profoundly moving. Stroud is exceptionally evocative when writing about nature and family … even grungy Wantage with its Greggs and charity shops sounds alluring the way Stroud describes it.

Flora Watkins, Spectator

Beautiful and moving ... Raw, honest and poignant memoir

Woman's Own

A deeply felt meditation on home, belonging, place and memory … Restless, questing, The Giant on the Skyline is a travel book about wanting to stay put: a pilgrimage through a fabled English landscape … Stroud’s best memoir yet, the most invigoratingly expansive, strikingly written. Moving … Transformative.

Patricia Nichol, Daily Mail

Stroud’s writing is assured, visceral, sexy as well as sensuous, richly coloured in every way, and often freshly poetic, whether dealing with a toddler’s tears over the broccoli touching the gravy, or with death and loss. She paints her way through the book with striking word pictures … Orgasmic time, druids, gentle giants… The reader swirls like a leaf on a stream, coming out amazed by the richness – and unknownness – of other people’s lives.

Philippa Stockley, The Oldie