As Green as Grass and over 2 million other books are available for Amazon Kindle . Learn more
  • RRP: £16.99
  • You Save: £1.81 (11%)
FREE Delivery in the UK.
Only 2 left in stock (more on the way).
Dispatched from and sold by Amazon.
Gift-wrap available.
Quantity:1
As Green as Grass: Growin... has been added to your Basket
Used: Very Good | Details
Sold by the book house
Condition: Used: Very Good
Comment: This item will be picked, packed and shipped by Amazon and is eligible for free delivery within the UK
Have one to sell?
Flip to back Flip to front
Listen Playing... Paused   You're listening to a sample of the Audible audio edition.
Learn more
See all 2 images

As Green as Grass: Growing Up Before, During & After the Second World War Hardcover – 15 Aug 2013

25 customer reviews

See all 5 formats and editions Hide other formats and editions
Amazon Price New from Used from
Kindle Edition
"Please retry"
Hardcover
"Please retry"
£15.18
£0.96 £0.01
£15.18 FREE Delivery in the UK. Only 2 left in stock (more on the way). Dispatched from and sold by Amazon. Gift-wrap available.

Frequently Bought Together

As Green as Grass: Growing Up Before, During & After the Second World War + The Great Western Beach + Maidens' Trip
Price For All Three: £33.16

Buy the selected items together



Product details

  • Hardcover: 320 pages
  • Publisher: Bloomsbury Publishing (15 Aug. 2013)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1408835614
  • ISBN-13: 978-1408835616
  • Product Dimensions: 15.3 x 3 x 21.8 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.1 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (25 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 302,096 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

Emma Smith was born Elspeth Hallsmith in 1923 in Newquay, Cornwall, where she lived until the age of twelve. Her book, Maiden's Trip, was first published in 1948 and won the John Llewellyn Rhys Memorial Prize. It was republished in 2009. Her second, The Far Cry, was published the following year and was awarded the James Tait Black Memorial Prize. In 1951 Emma Smith married Richard Stewart-Jones. After her husband's death in 1957 she went to live with her two young children in Wales, where she published four successful children's books, a number of short stories and, in 1978, her novel, The Opportunity of a Lifetime. In 2008 The Great Western Beach, her memoir of her Cornish childhood, was published to widespread acclaim. Since 1980 she has lived in the London district of Putney.

Product Description

Review

Smith tells the story of her teenage and adult years up to 1951 with her customary verve, precision and humour ... As Green as Grass, she says, is definitely her last book ... But there is a twinkle in her eye. I hope it's not true. I'm desperate to know what happens next (Observer)

A delight (Spectator)

There are memoirs that barrel along happily, due to the swift clip of a life well lived, and there are those lifted by the vivacity of the voice. Emma Smith's As Green As Grass exhibits a rare marriage of both virtues ... A wonderful journey beautifully told, and like all great memoirs, remains with the reader like the echo of friendship (Independent on Sunday)

Evocative and arresting ... hugely engaging ... Told in three sections it is a clear-headed and engagingly candid account of the formative life of an intelligent young woman ...The afterword will break your heart (Daily Express)

I loved Emma Smith's evocative childhood memoir, The Great Western Beach, and am just as excited about As Green as Grass . A captivating coming of age (Woman & Home)

Emma Smith has written a book that should - and I hope does - endure as a classic among memoirs of childhood. I savoured every page (Miranda Seymour, on The Great Western Beach)

One envies Emma Smith's precise and sly humour in her portrait of life (Michael Ondaatjie)

I've rarely come across a more gripping childhood memoir (Diana Athill)

Wonderfully written, humorous and humane, and beautifully evocative of the time (Independent, on Maidens' Trip)

Optimistic, generous and thoroughly enjoyable (Giulia Rhodes Sunday Express)

Emma Smith's previous memoirs, Maidens' Trip and The Great Western Beach were both highly regarded as modern classics. Smith's final memoir in the trilogy will no doubt be given the same accolade (The Lady)

An entrancing memoir, a dazzling evocation of what it is like to be young, quick-witted, hopeful and very slightly silly. It is much more than all right. And now, please, for the next volume (Jane Shilling New Statesman)

Irresistible ...

With any luck she will give us a sequel to this captivating memoir

(Iain Finlayson Saga)

A cracking memoir (Bel Mooney Daily Mail)

A beguiling evocation of what it is to be young, talented, hopeful and very slightly silly (Jane Shilling New Statesman Books of the Year)

Delightful (Elizabeth Grice Oldie)

Book Description

The new memoir from the author of Maidens' Trip and The Great Western Beach; a remarkable story of a young woman growing up against the backdrop of the Second World War, and postwar life in India, Paris and bohemian Chelsea

Inside This Book

(Learn More)
Browse Sample Pages
Front Cover | Copyright | Excerpt
Search inside this book:

What Other Items Do Customers Buy After Viewing This Item?

Customer Reviews

4.1 out of 5 stars

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

18 of 19 people found the following review helpful By D. P. Mankin TOP 1000 REVIEWERVINE VOICE on 20 Aug. 2013
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
I can sum this book up in one word: Superb. Emma Smith's memoir is a delight to read. Her prose is so fluent and readable. But more importantly she engages your interest. This is one of the best books I've read in a long time. By writing in the present tense she has adopted what at first feels strange. After all you're reading about events that happened in the past. But if you also find this odd at first then don't worry - it really does work. Her life is fascinating. This book knocks for six all those celebrity (auto-)biographies and exposes how facile and vacuous they are. This book is about the life of someone who has really lived - she's about ninety now, not 18 or 24 or 26! This is a beautifully written book.
Comment Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback. If this review is inappropriate, please let us know.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
18 of 21 people found the following review helpful By Susie B TOP 50 REVIEWER on 21 Aug. 2013
Format: Kindle Edition
Emma Smith, born Elspeth Hallsmith in 1923, is a novelist of both adult and children's fiction, and in this engaging memoir 'As Green As Grass' she shares with the reader details of her life beginning as a schoolgirl in the mid 1930s, up until her marriage in 1951.

Divided into three sections, the first part of the book begins with the Hallsmith family's removal from Emma's much-loved seaside home in Newquay, to Crapstone, in Plymouth, a village on the edge of Dartmoor, when her father is transferred by the bank which employs him. Emma's father, a war hero from the Great War, is a difficult and bitter man, whose ambition to become an artist was thwarted by the outbreak of war and whose mood swings and unpredictable behaviour worsen over the years, making life very difficult for the whole family, but particularly for Emma's long-suffering mother. Eventually Emma's father has a total breakdown, tries to strangle his wife and after the verdict of two doctors: "Daddy, they agreed, has completely gone off his head, and he must therefore be put into a lunatic asylum." Emma, expecting her mother to collapse with the shock of her husband's breakdown, is surprised by her mother's transformation now that she is no longer held back by her bullish husband: "In twenty four hours she has reverted miraculously to the person who once, during that far-off period of the Great War, was not just able to drive an ambulance, but was Commandant, no less, of King Edward's Convalescent Hospital for wounded soldiers...
Read more ›
Comment Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback. If this review is inappropriate, please let us know.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By eva furmanovsky on 19 Dec. 2013
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
Totally riveting throughout. We owe a lot to this woman, who spent 3 years during WW2 ferrying coal on canal boats to keep the industry going in England. A very arduous task for a young woman. She, and 2 other young women , who changed from time to time, worked in all weathers, and in grim conditions, at a task which had not been done by women before, but now when men were in the forces, they stepped in. Always with a sense of humour, she describes a long and eventful life acutely observed, and with great modesty.
Comment Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback. If this review is inappropriate, please let us know.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By jomug on 8 Sept. 2013
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
I read this because I heard Emma Smith interviewed on radio 4 and I thought she sounded interesting. The account of living through the war was indeed interesting. However, the writing was a little flat and there were numerous spelling errors (particularly when quoting French) - I found this exasperating.
Comment Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback. If this review is inappropriate, please let us know.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
4 of 5 people found the following review helpful By emita on 27 Aug. 2013
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
A very interesting read, but the author needs a new proof reader. Spelling mistakes, misuse of words e.g. access instead of excess, make the reader irritated. Also the vocabulary comes over as slightly dated. However, the references to events and personalities during the period covered are handled with a light touch, and the curious lives led in the pre through to post war years are fascinating.
Comment Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback. If this review is inappropriate, please let us know.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
3 of 4 people found the following review helpful By Claire on 8 Nov. 2013
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
I chose this as my poor mother passed away this summer and as I was going through her address book to invite her old friends to the funeral, I saw a group of friends under the heading 'The Bargees' as I started to contact the ladies it became clear that they were all part of a girls school group calling themselves by this name as their favourite teacher was a barge woman during the war who helped to take scrap metal to Wales on the canal barges then return with barges loaded with coal. All to help the war effort! I heard the author interviewed on Woman's hour and then saw an article in the press about her story. It was a moving account and a most enjoyable read.
Comment Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback. If this review is inappropriate, please let us know.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Gossy on 8 Jan. 2014
Format: Kindle Edition
not as good as the previous part of the memoir. Parts totally absorbing, but other parts seem to lose momentum
Comment Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback. If this review is inappropriate, please let us know.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
There's an immediacy, a freshness that you don't often get from writers recalling their youth. She writes in the voice of a teenager caught up in the prelude to the war, then as a young woman finding her way in a world turned upside down by forces outside her control. It's an absorbing read and I felt I understood completely what it was like to be there.
Comment Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback. If this review is inappropriate, please let us know.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again

Most Recent Customer Reviews


Look for similar items by category


Feedback