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Forests and fairytales
on 14 December 2013
In this book Maitland is looking at the role that woods and forests have played in our national identity, primarily through stories, by also as a source of employment, fuel and food.
the book is split into 12 chapters, with 12 sub chapters. Each chapter describes a visit to a different wood or forest that she goes to. She visits these woods all around the country, one each month, as they are significant in some way, either for the variety of the species, or they historical or cultural significance. In these she explores the links that woods have with fairy stories, and the types of characters in these stories.
The small sub chapters are modern interpretations of well known fairy stories that she herself has written.
I really enjoyed the main part of the book about the forests and the history and cultural significance that trees have in our national psyche. Less enjoyable were the fairy tales. She speaks in the final chapter about children and new citizens being given a little book of classic fairy tales, and I feel that if she was going to include these she would have been better including the originals.