The White Göddes: An Encounter

One of the best holiday books I have read in years. I immediately wanted to read it a second time (instead I gave it to my neighbour, who devoured it just as much).

An unforgettable story of love, venegance and forgiveness.

Simon Gough’s vivid and multi-layered reflection on his childhood and adolescence in the magical domain of his “great grand-uncle”, the poet Robert Graves, lies somewhere between the genres of novel and autobiography.

I was absorbed throughout and put under the spell of both the setting (a bohemian Deia, Majorca in the early Sixties) and the extraordinary characters of Simon Gough’s autobiographic story: Robert Graves’ muses, friends and family, all through the eyes of his little nephew.

For me this book evoked the places and characters so vividly that I wanted to jump on the next plane and discover artistic Deia and it’s surrounding villages immediately. I could smell the pine trees, I could feel the sea breeze and I wanted to sit at their table for a late boozy lunch.

The prose is rich and compelling and aches with the bewilderment of love, obsession and belonging. Absolutely beautifully written, there were so many times I paused to re-read a certain passage. This certainly is a book you want to read consciously, no distractions. Every night I couldn’t wait to snuggle up in bed and be right in that magically intoxicating story.

If you’re after a captivating book that gets you into a mediterranean, hedonistic spirit - that is deep, powerful and a little dark - this one is for you.


The White Goddess Simon Gough