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The Valley: A Hundred Years in the Life of a Family
 
 

The Valley: A Hundred Years in the Life of a Family [Kindle Edition]

Richard Benson
4.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (21 customer reviews)

Print List Price: £25.00
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Product Description

Product Description

The close-knit villages of the Dearne Valley were home to four generations of the Hollingworth family. Spanning Richard Benson’s great-grandmother Winnie’s ninety-two years in the valley, and drawing on years of historical research, interviews and anecdotes, The Valley lets us into generations of carousing and banter as the family’s attempts to build a better and fairer world for themselves meet sometimes with triumph, sometimes with bitter defeat. Against a backdrop of underground explosions, strikes and pit closures, these are unflinching, deeply personal stories of battles between the sexes in a man’s world sustained by strong women; of growing up, and the power of love and imagination to transform lives.

Product details

  • Format: Kindle Edition
  • File Size: 945 KB
  • Print Length: 545 pages
  • Page Numbers Source ISBN: 0747591849
  • Publisher: Bloomsbury Publishing; 1 edition (24 April 2014)
  • Sold by: Amazon Media EU S.à r.l.
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B00JGAD0WA
  • Text-to-Speech: Enabled
  • X-Ray:
  • Average Customer Review: 4.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (21 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #124,228 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
10 of 10 people found the following review helpful
Format:Hardcover
I thought the author must know all the journalists, the newspaper reviews for this book were so good. But for once they were justified. This is an amazing work. Compelling, warm, sad, funny, moving, and a window on a lost world. RIP the mining industry. Its demise was a scandal. This book is a must for anyone interested in social history, but also for anyone who loves a family saga. It's gripping, and to think that it is based on the author's actual family is staggering. You couldn't make it up. I thoroughly recommend this gem of a book. The only drawback? How heavy it is to carry around! Because you won't be able to put it down.
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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars And Quiet flows …the Dearne 13 May 2014
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
I know South Yorkshire's Dearne valley and the social and historical context of this book intimately, having grown up, worked in and studied (as an academic) the locations in which it is set. The accuracy and sensitivity with which Richard Benson renders the working class culture built around coal mining as it ebbs and flows across the generations and finally succumbs to the cruelty of politically orchestrated de-industrialisation, is remarkable. I know (professionally) how hard it is to avoid the twin traps of nostalgia and polemic with this material and Benson navigates around both with consummate skill, at the same time always maintaining a narrative drive that extends the book's reach way beyond the title's understated ambitions as a family chronicle. The sense of life being lived and made as everyday tragedies and small-scale splendours unfold within a rich, politicised (and now disappeared) structure of feeling; the deep, almost geological continuities of family through time and place; both of these characteristics reminded me, in the very best way, of those large, ambitious and steadily flowing works of Sholokov, such as "And Quiet Flows the Don". In short, I know the literature of coal mining culture in great detail, and this book quietly and gently takes its place among the best material worked from that seam for a long time. This is an important and valuable work that far exceeded my expectations, hence five stars.
Dr Geoff Bright, Education and Social research Institute,Manchester Metropolitan University
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars gripping family and social history 11 May 2014
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
I found this compelling reading, from the spiritualist daughter of a miner in the early 1900s, right up to the present day. It's character "driven" but this is set against social/political and economic history - the family are therefore both a counterbalance and part of, the bigger picture. Wonderful stories, sad and amusing, deep and thoughtful. I finished this long book in a few days and i now miss the family! Excellent and highly recommended (excellent on the kindle as it means it's not too heavy to carry around :-)
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars fantastic 14 May 2014
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
Grew up in the same village so knew of quite a few of the characters mentioned. Moved away from the area as an adult so it was quite a trip down memory lane. Found the coverage of the miners struggles over the years very informative, not something my own father (a miner himself) ever talked about.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The Valley by Richard Benson 19 May 2014
Format:Hardcover|Verified Purchase
Fascinating book. I am really enjoying it. It is interesting to follow the characters through the generations against the background of the industrial north.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The Valley, a must read. 15 May 2014
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
Brilliant book, written as if it were a novel.
The research has been excellent and the accuracy of events first class. Read it!
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
By Amanda
Format:Hardcover|Verified Purchase
This is a sympathetic and carefully written account of four generations in a family. Very well written, meticulously researched showing a deep understanding and empathy for the problems that the family encountered.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars very insightful....... 23 May 2014
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
Very insightful and enjoyable. A social history.
Would recommend to Yorkshire folk and those interested in modern history and coal mining in England.
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars
my grandad loved it.
Published 6 days ago by Nick Franklin
5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars
A brilliant Brilliant story written with Heart ....
Published 1 month ago by Heather Wargen
5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars
No problems
Published 1 month ago by Mrs Janice Grabau
5.0 out of 5 stars A great read.
What a good book. I know this area and quite a number of the people mentioned. I recognise one character from the 'Cora" whose name has been changed in the book! Read more
Published 2 months ago by John L
4.0 out of 5 stars great read - a fascinating insight to the life of ...
great read - a fascinating insight to the life of families living in coal mining communities in Yorkshire - a subject close to my heart. Read more
Published 3 months ago by Spenno
5.0 out of 5 stars so true to life
Excellent and so true. Ex Yorkshire miner from Barnsley,, living in Australia, (Still mining) and proud to have 'endured' the great strike with honour and integrity.
Published 3 months ago by Ian
5.0 out of 5 stars but this is a very good read even if you don't know the area
I actually live in this area and can remember the Bensons and the people mentioned in the book, but this is a very good read even if you don't know the area. Read more
Published 3 months ago by music lover
3.0 out of 5 stars Fascinating book.
Fascinating, but somewhat politically biased.
Published 3 months ago by E. Houlder
5.0 out of 5 stars excellent read
very good indeed, opened my eyes to what happened to the miners , entertain , but very instructive, i cant commend this more highly
Published 4 months ago by Geoffrey Harris
4.0 out of 5 stars Good easy read
This is a great book for learning about social history if you don't like history books. It is interesting and easy to read. Would have preferred some photos though.
Published 5 months ago by amanda nield
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