Writing the Thames
Surveying writings as diverse as Caesar’s account of his legions crossing the Thames, John Tradescant describing his botanical garden at Lambeth, and The Wind in the Willows, this is an illustrated look at how the Thames has inspired people to write about it. Focusing on the Victorian and Edwardian periods, Hardyment describes the responses of early chroniclers and historians, topographers and tourists, naturalists and poets, novelists who set their stories along its banks, and those who go messing about in boats.
Children's Writer's Notebook
20 Great Authors and 70 Writing Exercises
Based on excerpts by authors including Dr Seuss, Roald Dahl and JK Rowling, the 70 exercises in this journal encourage creative writers to hone their skills by focusing on one element at a time, such as naming and developing characters or perfecting an opening line.
The Essential Poetry Collection
Best Loved Works from our Greatest Poets
From John Donne, through the great poets of the Romantic era – Wordsworth, Keats and Shelley – to WB Yeats in the early 20th century, this set of ten volumes presents the work of some of the most important and best-loved poets in the English language. Each book comprises a representative collection of poems, with a short introduction, and the set includes an eleventh volume, a journal. The other poets are Emily Dickinson, Edward Lear, Elizabeth Barrett Browning, Walt Whitman and Oscar Wilde.
Wordsworth's Gardens and Flowers
The Spirit of Paradise
Wordsworth was as passionate about his gardens at Dove Cottage and Rydal Mount as he was about the untamed world that surrounded them. With contemporary horticultural illustrations throughout, this book traces his interest in the natural world to his childhood fondness for gardening, before examining the references to flowers in his verse.
Kiss Kiss, Bang Bang
The Boom in British Thrillers from Casino Royale to the Eagle has Landed
The period from the 1950s to the 1970s was a golden age for British spy fiction. Based on conversations with many of the 150 writers covered, this book sets the phenomenon against the backdrop of imperial decline, the Cold War and a burgeoning paperback market. It identifies two distinct genres: the glamorous fantasy of James Bond, and the sombre realism of Le Carré and Deighton. With a foreword by Lee Child.
On the Sofa with Jane Austen
By exploring topics including gossip, grandmothers and husbands, these 21 essays offer an accessible insight into the world of Jane Austen’s novels. Light-hearted in tone, they discuss the techniques and themes she used to convey the appearance, personalities and thoughts of her characters and are introduced with elegant line drawings.
The Secret Radical
Looking at the social and political context of Austen’s work, this analysis shows how she was able to use her stories to comment on serious contemporary subjects, such as feminism, slavery, the treatment of the poor and the power of the Church. Slightly off-mint and felt-tip mark on lower trimmed edge.
Scholars, Poets and Radicals
Discovering Forgotten Lives in the Blackwell Collections
Benjamin Henry Blackwell’s bookshop first opened in 1879 and its archive contains a wealth of information about the early years of this Oxford institution. Ricketts’ survey of the material brings to life many fascinating characters, in particular Blackwell’s scholar-apprentices, chosen for their enquiring minds, whose diaries and memoirs form a remarkable record of bookselling at a time when more people were literate than ever before.
The Food Lovers' Anthology
Originally compiled by Peter Hunt and published as Eating and Drinking: An Anthology for Epicures in 1961, this volume of poetry and prose is full of unexpected delights: the ladies of Elizabeth Gaskell’s Cranford faced with the insurmountable problem of peas and two-pronged forks; Fitzroy Maclean’s account of ‘an unsatisfactory vegetable’ during his desert travels in Eastern Approaches; food-related limericks from Edward Lear; and words of wisdom from the great gastronome Brillat-Saverin.
The Book Lovers' Anthology
A Compendium of Writing about Books, Readers and Libraries
This ‘compendium of writing about books, readers and libraries’, first published in 1911, presents prose and poetry by a who’s who of literature and learning, from Erasmus to Robert Louis Stevenson. The readings are arranged by themes including bibliophilia, the library and ‘literary worlds’ – in which we find this from Francis Bacon’s Apophthegmes: ‘Alonso of Aragon was wont to say of himself that he was a great Necromancer, for that he used to ask counsel of the dead: meaning Books.’
Puzzles and Conundrums in Mary Shelley's Monstrous Masterpiece
Starting with a chapter on the background to the composition of Frankenstein (1818), John Sutherland explores the conundrums and ‘narrative obstacles’ in the novel, posing questions such as ‘Who makes the Creature’s trousers?’ and ‘Why go to the North Pole to commit suicide?’
The Drowned and the Saved
In his final book, Primo Levi turned once again to his time in Auschwitz, and the lessons to be drawn from it. He reflects on the necessity of bearing witness to the truth, on survivor guilt, his feelings towards the Germans and the futility of hatred, and delivers a sobering reminder that, with would-be dictators waiting in the wings, the unimaginable could happen again.