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The Amber Seeker


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The sequel to The Walrus Mutterer, longlisted for the Highland Book Prize, 2018

Northern Britain, Iron Age. Pytheas of Massalia, the famed Greek explorer, roves the icy northern lands of Celtic Britain and beyond, in search of amber and other precious goods. He also craves another encounter with Rian, the slave he fell in love with during a previous voyage and who still haunts him. But Rian has other ideas. She has no desire to see Pytheas, and she won’t give up her freedom without a fight. 

As Pytheas navigates a world of plundered riches, feuding warlords and ancient curses, will he succeed in finding what he set out for? 

In the second volume of this extraordinary, imaginative trilogy, Mandy Haggith takes us back to prehistoric times for an epic saga ranging from the subarctic to the Mediterranean. The Amber Seeker revisits the unforgettable cast of characters we met in The Walrus Mutterer, weaving another visceral tale of loss, longing and revenge in 320 BC. 

REVIEWS OF The Amber Seeker

"A compelling tale of endeavour, bravery and human frailty … The story is visceral and visual, crafted with a lyrical prose." Dundee Courier, Scottish Book of the Week

"Brave and fascinating … asks questions about the nature of truth, perspective, and the power of the narrator to influence where readers’ sympathies lie." Alistair Braidwood, Scots Whay Hae

"An epic tale of adventure, The Amber Seeker is a gem of historical fiction, written with elegant language and telling an emotional story of seeking knowledge in the name of glory." Cultured Vultures

"Exquisite … The Iron Age landscape comes to life with a colourful brilliance and the long sea voyages are by turns magical and terrifying." Undiscovered Scotland

"Marries great storytelling and convincing research … Haggith invites the reader to explore a strange world and far-distant time, and the voyage on which she takes the reader is always interesting, sometimes enthralling." Allan Massie, The Scotsman

"Haggith writes fluently and, with the light of her research into this period leading her imagination, there is a whole new experience for the reader … There is much to enjoy and learn in this novel [which] has a universal resonance and draws parallels with modern life." Tony Michaels, The Wee Review

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The Amber Seeker

About the author

Mandy Haggith

Mandy Haggith lives in Assynt in the northwest Highlands of Scotland, where she combines writing with sailing, environmental activism and teaching – she is a lecturer in literature and creative writing at the University of the Highlands and Islands. Her first novel, The Last Bear, won the Robin Jenkins Literary Award for environmental writing in 2009.  The Amber Seeker is her fourth novel and the second in the Stone Stories trilogy, which began with The Walrus Mutterer (2018). Mandy is also the author of three poetry collections, a non-fiction book and numerous essays, and the editor of a poetry anthology.

Praise for The Stone Stories trilogy and Mandy Haggith:

“Haggith’s woman’s eye view of the Iron Age feels fresh and distinctive.” Sunday Herald

“An ambitious and imaginative novel … believable and compelling.” Jane Bradley, Scotsman

“Vivid, memorable and utterly compelling.” Helen Sedgwick

“A gripping, haunting, visceral novel… Lyrical and poetic prose, the author has created a convincing and entirely believable world… One of the best books I have read so far this year.” Historical Novels Review (Editors’ Choice)

“An immersive evocation of ancient folklore and ritual, this novel’s characterisation and fast pace make it a real page-turner which will keep you hooked.” Scottish Field

“Utterly compelling…beautifully crafted…paints an exquisite pen picture.” Undiscovered Scotland

“We see what the world was like…for the Iron Age peoples, particularly the women. … Rian is a compelling heroine. Life for her is often harsh, uncompromising and dangerous, and yet she has insights and wisdom that we moderns may well envy.” Margaret Elphinstone

“Compelling.” Lucinda Byatt, Historical Novels Review

“Moving and quietly passionate.” AL Kennedy

“Compelling and terrifying.” Observer

“Passionate and subversive … written with a poet’s touch.” Jason Donald

“Lyrical and vivid, written with a poet’s eye for detail.” Linda Gillard