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Red Sky at Sunrise: Cider with Rosie, As I Walked Out One Midsummer Morning, A Moment of War Paperback – 28 Oct 1993

4.5 out of 5 stars 106 customer reviews

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Paperback, 28 Oct 1993
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Product details

  • Paperback: 544 pages
  • Publisher: Penguin; New Ed edition (28 Oct. 1993)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0140172858
  • ISBN-13: 978-0140172850
  • Product Dimensions: 12.9 x 2.3 x 19.8 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (106 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 321,503 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Product Description

About the Author

Laurie Lee has written some of the best-loved travel books in the English language. Born in Stroud, Gloucestershire, in 1914, he was educated at Slad village school and Stroud Central School. At the age of nineteen he walked to London and then travelled on foot through Spain, where he was trapped by the outbreak of the Civil War. He later returned by crossing the Pyrenees, as he recounted in A Moment of War.

Laurie Lee published four collections of poems: The Sun My Monument (1944), The Bloom of Candles (1947), My Many-Coated Man (1955) and Pocket Poems (1960). His other works include The Voyage of Magellan (1948), The Firstborn (1964), I Can't Stay Long (1975), and Two Women (1983). He also wrote three bestselling volumes of autobiography: Cider with Rosie (1959), which has sold over six million copies worldwide, As I Walked Out One Midsummer Morning (1969) and A Moment of War (1991).

--This text refers to an alternate Paperback edition.


Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
I purchased the Kindle version, and it is full of errors, most of which look like uncorrected OCR mistakes. Many of the accented characters are incorrectly rendered, and therefore a good many of the Spanish names, which makes a nonsense of much of the text. There is missing punctuation, and all sorts of textual errors. The document does not appear to have been proof-read at all.

I haven't been through it alongside the print version in order to see if there are any errors or missing text, but I wouldn't be surprised if there are more problems. The publishers should be ashamed of themselves for charging £11.99 for such a shoddy text.
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Format: Paperback
This collection of Laurie Lee's autobiographical works is absolutely fantastic. In "Cider With Rosie", the poetry of Lee's prose evocatively captures his early life in a Cotswold village in the years following World War 1. I was completely riveted to the subsequent story of his travels through Spain during the 1930's in the build up to the Civil War. In this day and age, to contemplate walking across Spain and through the Sierras with only a violin and a few dried biscuits is just unbelievable. I would recommend this book to anyone with an interest in travelling.
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By Stewart M TOP 1000 REVIEWER on 9 Jun. 2009
Format: Paperback
The contrast between some of the scenes described in this book could not be starker. From the rural Cotswolds of the 1920's to The Spanish Civil war the author describes landscapes and people with a light touch that is highly successful.
The descriptions of the Cotswolds as working rural landscapes in Cider with Rosie are fascinating, and are a marked contrast to the way in which the region is seen today. Equally interesting is the depiction of rural poverty at this time. Works such as The Road to Wigan Pier have focused attention on the urban poor at this time, but the rural poor did not live in some bucolic paradise. The section of the books with deal with the Spanish Civil war are heart breaking in both the acts they describe and because of the loss of belief we seem to have suffered - would an International Brigade be formed today?
Taken as a single volume the 3 books published here are an account of a young man coming of age in world that was about to change forever and as such are a record of a lost world. Some of the values of the world are as relevant today as they ever have been, and this collection of books deserves to be widely read.
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Format: Paperback
This trilogy of memoirs spanning the years from the author's infancy until the end of his experiences in the Spanish Civil War is a delight of vivid imagery and language. I can think of no other author whose writing has such a quality of "lightness" - both in terms of illumination and sheer exuberance. About 40 years ago I read "As I Walked Out One Midsummer Morning" and suddenly, recently I had a yen to read something by Laurie Lee again. It was a thrill to find this trilogy available and rediscover the pleasure of reading about a time and way of life long vanished and also to be reminded of the historical period leading up to World War II when Spain was not yet a modern democracy. This is the kind of reading which makes learning about the past fascinating and enjoyable.
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Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
I bought this collection for my holiday in Madrid - I like to read something set in the country I travel to and have had this collection on my wish list since I first read Cider With Rosie. I re-read Cider With Rosie before leaving for Spain and loved it as much the second time round as the first. It's not a book with a narrative line; it moves from one year to the next and back again, each chapter focussing on a particular thing - his mother, the kitchen, school etc. But in its totality it paints a heartachingly beautiful picture of a life that has now gone, a poor, insular rural existence which had been the norm for many hundreds of years but which was to come to an end with the coming of the motorcar and the intrusions of the modern world. His love of family and home is infectious, and his descriptions of the English countryside magnificent.

As I Walked Out One Midsummer Morning gave a tremendously vivid impression of Spain before the Civil War, the grinding poverty that was beginning to ferment revolt. The first section is about his time in London living with ordinary working people. Contrast that and his time in Slad with what he finds in Spain and you realise the rural poor in Spain were centuries behind us, even though our people weren't living the life of Reilly. I went to some of the places he visited - Segovia, Toledo and Madrid - and indeed stayed in Madrid in the street parallel to the one in which he spent his last night or boozing and whoring in Madrid and which he revisited a couple of years later during the Civil War (in A Moment of War). Reading it on location added an extra dimension, but everything is so vividly described that you don't need to be there to enjoy it - he takes you there.
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Format: Kindle Edition
I read and thoroughly enjoyed the Kindle edition of this collection. The book itself is un-putdownable and paints vivid pictures ranging from childhood in a remote Gloucestershire village to his mis-adventures in the Spanish Civil War. However, my enjoyment was somewhat tempered by silly typographical and transcription errors and inconsistencies which cropped up all too frequently in the Kindle edition. Some were so basic I had to stop and go back to re-read passages to make sure I hadn't missed anything!
But on balance, go ahead and buy this book - you won't regret it.
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