Treacle Walker

By Alan Garner

‘Playful, moving and wholly remarkable’ Guardian

‘A small miracle’ New Statesman

‘Mastery of craft, resonance and deep feeling on every page’ Telegraph

An introspective young boy, Joseph Coppock squints at the world with his lazy eye. Living alone in an old house, he reads comics, collects birds’ eggs and plays with his marbles. When, one day, a rag-and-bone man called Treacle Walker appears, exchanging an empty jar of a cure-all medicine and a donkey stone for a pair of Joseph’s pyjamas and a lamb’s shoulder blade, a mysterious friendship develops between them.

A fusion of myth, magic and the stories we make for ourselves, Treacle Walker is an extraordinary novel from one of our greatest living writers.

‘All the exuberance and eccentricity, all the deep thought and resounding mythology of [Garner’s] best work’ Observer

‘Spare and allusive… luminous and understated’ Rowan Williams, New Statesman

‘Cryptic, evocative, sparely told and deceptively simple’ Carolyne Larrington, TLS


Format: Paperback
Release Date: 04 Aug 2022
Pages: 160
ISBN: 978-0-00-847780-6
Alan Garner was born in Cheshire on 17th October 1934, and his childhood was spent in Alderley Edge, where his family has lived for more than four hundred years. He was awarded the OBE in 2001, for his services to literature.

”'Treacle Walker is a small miracle” - New Statesman Best Books of 2021

”'Remarkable … there’s mastery of craft, resonance and deep feeling on every one of these 150 pages.” - Daily Telegraph

”'Spare and allusive … luminous and understated. It’s about seeing and healing; any more by way of summary would be useless” - Rowan Williams, New Statesman

”'It’s a strange, austere, uncompromising book, leagues ahead of anything else I’ve read this year” - Peter Thonemann, TLS

”'This seemingly brief tale is a hypnotic wonder, blurring the boundaries of time and spirit… A glorious wonder in its own right. Here is real magic between hard covers” - Erica Wagner, New Statesman

”'Treacle Walker is a circular narrative, made of smaller interlocking circles, with actions and whole paragraphs repeating: in its end is its beginning. This late fiction also works the seam opened up in Garner’s very first novel, inspired by the story handed down to his grandfather about enchanted sleepers under Alderley Edge … Playful, moving and wholly remarkable work … There’s a life’s work inside this little book” - Guardian

”'Sparse yet masterful… This is a mesmerising folktale where every word counts” - Literary Review

”'Garner has always suggested that there is essentially just one story, and this novel … contains all the exuberance and eccentricity, all the deep thought and resounding mythology of his best work … cramming in … more ideas and imagination than most authors manage in their whole careers” - Observer