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A Place In My Country: In Search Of A Rural Dream Paperback – 1 May 2008

4.8 out of 5 stars 77 customer reviews

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Product details

  • Paperback: 320 pages
  • Publisher: Phoenix (1 May 2008)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0753823888
  • ISBN-13: 978-0753823880
  • Product Dimensions: 12.7 x 2.3 x 20.3 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.8 out of 5 stars 77 customer reviews
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 790,275 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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Product description


"[Walthew's] beautifully written book is an elegy for an England that is dying" (Max Davidson DAILY TELEGRAPH)

"Avoiding the usual bland elegy for the rustic and redemptive, his book is a valuable memoir, both personal and social, a meditation on belonging in one of many Englands." (OBSERVER)

"a hard-edged and moving account of life in rural Britain today" (SUNDAY TIMES)

"Compelling and often deeply moving...Walthew has a genuine gift for bringing both people and places to life and marshals his runaway real life narratives with a novelist's skill." (Hugh Fearnley-Whittingstall)

"I read A Place in My Country with absolute unalloyed delight. A glorious book." (Jeremy Irons)

"he finds a farming heartbeat that is proud and defiant, defended by a cast of characters that outshine The Archers. A revelation of a book" (Tim Butcher, author Blood River)

"affecting and inspiring memoir...required reading for anyone who claims to know or love this country" (FINANCIAL TIMES)

"Funny, touching and ultimately very moving, this is a beautiful, unsentimental account of a personal loss that is reflected in the rapidly changing texture of life in rural England." (Clover Stroud SUNDAY TELEGRAPH)

"a riveting read" (COUNTRY LIFE)

"The book is a fascinating snapshot. All of life is here - birth, death, struggles with illness, hard work, lots of laughter. It will make you smile gently to yourself, laugh out loud, shed a quiet tear and feel angry at the changes happening in our countryside." (NFU'S COUNTRYSIDE MAGAZINE)

From the Author

This is a story of two journeys, my own, but within a much larger one, that of the English countryside. It is but a brief moment in time in one tiny patch of Albion, a country I am proud to be from. I have tried to be as truthful and accurate as my understanding at the time and my memory allows, given that I never set out to write this book when I moved there. I have changed all names, many geographical indicators and some minor incidental details (as well as excluding many experiences and conversations at the request of some of those who appear within this story), to afford at least a degree of privacy in a process which I am fully aware is deeply intrusive. On very few occasions I have merged an incident, or a conversation or two, for reasons of brevity or discretion. My apologies for any unintended misrepresentations or offence in trying to paint one small corner of that very much larger, ever changing picture that is the English countryside.
I am neither an academic nor a journalist, so this book was never intended to provide either a complete or an entirely balanced view of even a few hundred acres of England. Indeed, in my decision to buy what was once the home of an agricultural labourer, I was no neutral observer; in fact I was a participant in some of the problems that I describe. Nor am I an expert on farming or modern estate management; nor do I offer any real solutions to the problems facing the lives of country people.
There are many voices I did not hear, many people I did not meet, and many things I have learned since; there is yet more I am still to understand.
Mostly, though, I hope I will take the reader to a world that, for all its mutability, is nonetheless how I like to think of England: regions of breathless beauty, full of devilment, humour and rich untold histories.

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