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S Y L V O W : an environmental allegory

Commencing with publication of chapter one in Issue 192 of Ambit Magazine in April 2008, "Sylvow" is a novel revolving around five core characters in the imaginary northern European city of Sylvow.

Brother and sister, Claudia and Leo Vestra made a promise to each other as children: that he would look after the plants and she would look after the animals.

Now “Sylvow”, the city of their birth, surrounded by ancient but eroded forest: is under threat of impending environmental disaster. Leo, disenchanted with modern urban life, has mysteriously abandoned his wife to return to the surrounding forest, increasingly convinced that it is a semi-sentient organism (“Gaia”) preparing to rebel against its human irritants.

Claudia, now a mother of two young children, is distanced from her cold and analytical husband: psychiatrist Franco Reinwald, and alarmed by the outlandish letters that Leo sends her from the woods.

When Claudia meets Anton: one of her husband’s most enigmatic ex-patients, she and Leo’s estranged wife Vivienne set out on an ill-advised expedition into the forest in search of Leo. There they discover that Leo’s theories are being taken seriously by the government who are engaged in bizarre covert experiments in an attempt to communicate with the forest...

Sylvow will be published by Eibonvale Press in Autumn 2010: www.eibonvalepress.co.uk