"I'm bursting to say how beautiful, bewildering and breathtaking this book is. I don't want it to end...maybe it never does..." - 5-star reader's review
This is a book for urban explorers, imaginative walkers, ambulant youngsters, difficult drifters, artists of the path less travelled, mythogeographers, psychogeographers, situationists and all the restless.
Phil Smith author of 'Mythogeography', 'On Walking' and the 'Counter-Tourism' books, member of Exeter-based Wrights & Sites, well-known as Crabman, drifter and walker/performer and prolific playwright has written an extraordinary first novel - a mythogeographic novel.
In 'Alice's Dérives in Devonshire', he embodies in a modern fairy tale his preoccupations with the inner and outer worlds of psychogeography - bringing them together to describe the possibilities that offer themselves up to us when we live and walk and dream without our usual blinkers.
"Can a city fall to bits one day and put itself back together the next?
I think so, but I am crazy. So why should you believe me? Dad says it's OK to be mad. Bad is the problem.
And the city is bad. I saw its badness. For one day its glass was everywhere like broken teeth after a fight between lions and sharks. Big buildings leaning on each other like drunk dinosaurs. The new shopping centre was a cave full of smoke. And everyone was frightened of each other.
But I wasn't frightened. I could see that between the pieces of glass were shining gaps. And in the biggest building were passageways and tunnels and I could see that that was the good city. The city of holes and caves. Between the bad was the good, but only if you knew that before you looked."
"This is a funny, sad, touching, horrifying, hopeful and riveting read about a child walking mythogeographical terrain to find their Dad. You may well find reflections of your selves in these pages, because this is a book about Everything."
"I just finished reading Alice's Dérives in Devonshire - what a great story! I spent several lovely hours in the disappeared world, invisible, 'being marked on a different map'. Thanks so much!"