Merryn Glover was born in a former Rana palace in Kathmandu and grew up in Nepal, India and Pakistan. Her first major work was a stage play, The Long Way Home, which was broadcast on Radio Scotland. She has written three further radio plays for Radio 4 and Radio Scotland. Merryn's first novel, A House Called Askival (2014), was published by Freight. In 2019, she was appointed the first Writer in Residence for the Cairngorms National Park.
With the most wonderful blend of stark and sharp plot lines mixed with richly descriptive detailing this is a beautifully readable novel. It stands independently outside of genres as it slips into mystery, family drama, and relationship tales, and covers nearly one hundred years. A Highland shepherd disappears, years later his family still have questions and start to search within their family for answers. A eulogy sits at the very beginning, setting the mystery element in stone yet opening a door to intrigue. Numbered signs sit among the chapters, allowing a personal insight into the shepherd himself. The chapters are short and there is a large cast of characters but I didn’t ever lose my way. The majority of the novel sees two main characters spilling thoughts and feelings, which encourages a closer connection. Merryn Glover has an evocative pen, the descriptions sing, the sense of place flowed into my awareness and I found I couldn’t stop reading. Of Stone and Sky is an unexpected novel, echoing the past and asking questions of the future, it really is a truly lovely read.
James Connor, burdened with guilt from a tragedy during India and Pakistan’s partition, has dedicated his life to serving India. His estranged daughter, Ruth, believing she came second to her American parents’ missionary calling, rebelled as a teenager, triggering her own devastating event. After 24 years away, she finally returns to Askival, the family home in the northern hill-station of Mussoorie in Uttarakhand, to tend to her dying father. There they must both face the past and find forgiveness if they are to cross the chasm and be at peace. In this extraordinary and assured debut, Merryn Glover draws on her own upbringing in South Asia to create this sensitive, moving and panoramic journey through the turbulent history of India from Independence to the present day.
When Lily, a young girl from a troubled background becomes pregnant, she insists she is still a virgin. A host of professionals swing into action. Lily becomes increasingly isolated: her belief is diagnosed as delusion, there are suspicions of abuse, and the unborn baby is shown to be severely disabled. But despite all of this, her conviction that God has chosen her for a miracle finds proof in the most unexpected ways. Starring Helen Mackay, Cathleen McCarron, Ken Drury, Jane Whittenshaw, Jenny Lee, Ali Craig and Megg Nicol. Written by Merryn Glover. Producer/director: David Ian Neville.