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Racing Pigs And Giant Marrows: Travels around the North Country Fairs [Kindle Edition]

Harry Pearson
4.1 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (9 customer reviews)

Kindle Price: £4.49 includes VAT* & free wireless delivery via Amazon Whispernet
Sold by: Amazon Media EU S.à r.l.
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Book Description

Following his acclaimed book about football in the north-east,THE FAR CORNER, Harry Pearson vowed that his next project would not involve hanging around outdoors on days so cold that itinerant dogs had to be detached from lamp-posts by firemen. It would be about the summer: specifically, about a summer of shows and fairs in the north of England.

Encompassing such diverse talents as fell-running, tupperware-boxing and rabbit fancying (literally), and containing many more jokes about goats than is legal in the Isle of Man, Racing Pigs and Giant Marrows is without doubt the only book in existence to explain the design faults of earwigs and expose English farmers' fondness for transvestism. Warm, wise and very funny, it confirms increasing suspicions that Harry Pearson is really quite good.

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Pearson is funnier than Bill Bryson . . . a prize onion of a tome that'll leave you streaming at the eyes with merriment (INDEPENDENT)

Just as much of a hoot [as THE FAR CORNER]. The title explains his remit, but can't do justice to his one-liners and digressions (MANCHESTER EVENING NEWS)

It would have been easy for Pearson to have got hold of these people by their prize-winning parts and pulled mercilessly. But being a Northerner himself, he understands and revers them and takes the trouble to set these shows and their bizarre sideshows in a revealing historical context. He has fun doing it and it shows... In his sharp observation of British habit, Pearson has been compared with Bryson; in his capturing of the overheard, he has been linked with Bennett. In fact, Pearson is a new and original voice and all the more welcome for it. (THE TIMES)

One of the most impressive aspects of this highly genial book is a knowledge of rural history that enables [Pearson] to extemporise on subjects as diverse as the Bluefaced Leicester (it's a sheep) and why Roman guardhouses has north- and south- facing ex (FHM)

Book Description

* In Harry's second book he introduces us to the novelties which abound in our North Country Fairs, from fell Running to Rabbit Fancying.

Product details

  • Format: Kindle Edition
  • File Size: 333 KB
  • Print Length: 240 pages
  • Publisher: Abacus; New edition edition (6 Jun. 2013)
  • Sold by: Amazon Media EU S.à r.l.
  • Language: English
  • Text-to-Speech: Enabled
  • X-Ray:
  • Word Wise: Not Enabled
  • Enhanced Typesetting: Not Enabled
  • Average Customer Review: 4.1 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (9 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #326,898 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Laughter is assured as Harry explores up north 7 Feb. 2003
It is only natural that Pearson is compared to Bryson (from the front cover to the reviews). Insofar as this encourages you to buy the book, one can only confirm the similarities. I would rather prefer it to the early Bryson, as it concentrates more on people and their foibles (as well as sheep) than on book-learning. Pearson interweaves his research inobtrusively, and the book is clearly written by one who has travelled around the north of Britain's fairs and farms, and then done some homework in the library (and not the other way round like the more recent Brysons). This book will make you laugh out loud, whilst inspiring sympathy and interest in ways of life gone by. This book will age well, and the fact that it was written a few years ago is irrelevant. It is in my view an outstanding book, and it is a shame that probably most of its readers were football fans who have read his other books. This deserves a much wider audience. Buy it from amazon. You will not be disappointed. (and once you have read it, come back to the website and give this review a positive review, because I am right! If you hate the book, then a negative is in order. But you won't)
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Prepare to chortle loudly on the train 17 Sept. 2002
By A Customer
Bill Bryson eat your heart out. Dry, incisive, irreverent and littered with wildly off-topic rants/ancedotes on everything from cinder toffee to psychotic sheep. A bit of history on the origins of English country fairs, mixed with wry observations on regional eccentricities. Please write more Mr pearson!
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars hilarious account of north country fairs 4 Feb. 1999
By A Customer
This book is an hilarious account of agricultural shows and fairs of northern England, providing desciptions of the present day and historical background. Pearson's style is, by turns, eclectic, digressive and anecdotal, all written with an eye for the perverse and oddball. The picture captions alone are worth the price of the book. Not a book to be read on public transport unless you feel comfortable with laughing aloud in front of complete strangers.
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Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
I first encountered Harry Pearson's writing in 'The Far Corner', a great football book which deserves to be as well known as 'Fever Pitch' for its witty and dry observations about what actually keeps football fans going to less exulted fixtures across the country.

This book is more of the same, capturing the humour that occurs in everyday life perfectly. The writing is always warm about its subject and surprisingly informative too.

I have to confess to having attended some of the country fairs that are written about, so I perhaps understand the context of the writing more than the average reader, which gives the wring more depth and resonance for me personally.

Nevertheless, I have now read all of Harry Pearson's books (even the one about Belgium!) and have thoroughly enjoyed them all.

I wouldn't hesitate to recommend this book as a cracking read.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Hilarious 21 Dec. 2008
By John Meanwood TOP 500 REVIEWER
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
This is the sort of book that you will lend to someone at work, only to have to buy it again when they fail to return it (because they want to keep it). It's hilarious, so don't read it on the bus or train unless you want the other passengers to think you are having a seizure.
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