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Wild Woman Swimming: A Journal of West Country Waters Paperback – 1 Sep 2018
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'Beautiful, ballsy, invigorating. Brave & daring. Anyone who thinks Roger Deakin was wild will need to recalibrate.' KATE REW, DIRECTOR OF THE OUTDOOR SWIMMING SOCIETY ----------- 'Beautiful and inspiring. This is a book about swimming, but also about friendship, courage and what it means to be a wild woman. It would be impossible to read this book without discovering a new appreciation for life and a desire to leap into the nearest body of water. Lynne's words will stay with me for a long time - this has the making of a nature writing classic.' LIBBY PAGE, AUTHOR OF THE LIDO --------- 'This is a tangible book. It's as alive as weather. Everything thrusts outward from Lynne, there's a physicality to it. It follows the years in great big footsteps and there's a sense of everything expanding out as the weather warms and then contracting back in again as ice returns. Or it's like the tide. Sometimes the joy is palpable, but then, so is the fear. Sometimes that fear belongs to me, the reader. When she writes `we find another deep cave ... we're pulled in and shooshed back; it's like being caught in the windpipe of a living creature' I have to put the book down, take a minute. She's casually, devastatingly, laid out my own nightmare, and I can feel it, safely here on dry land. She is not immune to fear herself, and knows how to tell it - there are stories in here that have the pacing of a good thriller. Times where it feels really wild, where Lynne dances on `the edge of control', where the water makes her afraid and unsure. Of course you know she survives this one but the adrenaline! Hers, mine! It all adds to the allure of this extraordinary woman, how she faced things some of us don't dare think of. And alongside all of this, there's love. So much of it, again like waves coming in and going out again. That too you can feel on the page, and it's never cloying, always rather wonderful, actually.' JENNY LANDRETH, AUTHOR OF SWELL: A WATERBIOGRAPHY, WRITING FOR CAUGHT BY THE RIVER
About the Author
Devon paramedic Lynne Roper began swimming outdoors in 2011 while recovering from a double mastectomy. Warm, funny and fearless, she was soon at the heart of The Outdoor Swimming Society, inspiring others to swim wild, 'read water' and take educated risks as she did. For five years, until a brain tumour made swimming and writing impossibly hard, Lynne recorded her swims in over sixty wild waters. Editor Tanya Shadrick promised to publish the diaries after a single meeting with the author in the month before she died. Read more about the extraordinary backstory behind Wild Woman Swimming at www.selkiepress.com/wildwomanstory
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The prose is fluid, sometimes still and calm like a plunge pool and at other times bouncing and burbling like the Double Dart in spate. Lynne's gift for descriptive writing makes the places, and people, she clearly cherishes alive on the page, and emotion lies cradled in the warm embrace of humour.
It would be hard not to enjoy this book.