A Conscious Englishman (Paperback)
  • A Conscious Englishman (Paperback)
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A Conscious Englishman (Paperback)

(author)
£9.99
Paperback 290 Pages
Published: 24/01/2013
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'Did anyone ever begin to be a poet at thirty-six in the shade?' Edward Thomas asked. This novel traces how, after a lifetime of prose, mostly written in the shade of angry despair, he did. Utterly unexpected changes follow, more than his faithful wife Helen would wish. She tells her story of watchful devotion and, she hopes, influence, often threatened by their powerful friend, Robert Frost. Beginning in the iconic summer of 1914 in a rural world full of rich promise and beauty, it is a story of friendships, marriage, tranquillity and war. The complexity and depth of Thomas' poetry emerges through his wrestling with words along with home, children, sowing, harvesting and the perpetual lack of money. It is the story of decisions, change and consequences, in a rural setting where what endures is the natural world and its inhabitants, those lives of which, as we now realize, we are simply one part.

Publisher: StreetBooks
ISBN: 9780956424235
Number of pages: 290
Weight: 318 g
Dimensions: 203 x 127 x 16 mm


MEDIA REVIEWS

'[Margaret Keeping's] inhabitation of Edward, Robert, Helen and their world is tender and subtle...a lovely novel.' Robert Macfarlane. '[Margaret Keeping's] writing is very assured and she has the necessary eye for place, detail, weather and seasons to write about Edward Thomas...I hope the book will reach the wide audience it deserves and feel sure that many others will enjoy it as much as I have.' Linda Newbery, author of Set in Stone. REVIEW 1 of 5: 'A Conscious Englishman...turns its subject into a twentieth-century equivalent of the old-fashioned notion of Keats: a poet misvalued by his times and cruelly cut down...' Peter McDonald, The Times Literary Supplement. REVIEW 2 of 5: 'A Conscious Englishman holds its own against other versions of the same story and provides an easier route than academic studies into the contexts of Thomas's writing. Anyone with a burgeoning interest in Thomas should begin by reading the poems, but A Conscious Englishman is a worthy addition to the expanding secondary literature.' Gabriel Roberts, The Oxonian Review. REVIEW 3 of 5: 'The author's research on Frost, Farjeon and Thomas is commendable, and her sympathies obviously lie with Edward...' Janet Williamson, The Historical Novels Review. REVIEW 4 of 5: 'A Conscious Englishman offers a unique perspective on the last four years of Edward Thomas, confronting and imagining inner thoughts and feelings, and conversations with those close to him, questioning the unemotional documenting of facts by biographers. It reaches, and allows us to glimpse, important moments in the life of Edward Thomas that non-fiction is not able to.' James Riding, Friends of the Dymock Poets Newsletter. REVIEW 5 of 5: 'An absorbing book...This novel is very good on the influences behind the wonderful poetry.' Merryn Williams, The Oxford Times

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