A Mudlarking Year: Finding Treasure in Every Season (Hardback)
  • A Mudlarking Year: Finding Treasure in Every Season (Hardback)
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A Mudlarking Year: Finding Treasure in Every Season (Hardback)

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Hardback 368 Pages
Published: 04/07/2024
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Waterstones Says

Maiklem's luminous sequel to the bestselling Mudlarking is an eloquent celebration of a year spent scouring the banks of the Thames for hidden treasures, from Tudor love tokens to Victorian pottery.

'An absolute treasure trove of sound advice and historical detail' Katherine May'A delightful and a profound meditation on the variety of human experience' Ian Mortimer'Lara Maiklem is a phenomenon. She elevates trudging around in the mud to an epic gallivant through our past' Dan Snow

For over two decades, Lara Maiklem has been scouring the banks of the tidal Thames looking for objects – lost or discarded – that tell forgotten stories. In this charming sequel to the bestselling Mudlarking, Lara widens her search beyond the river and reflects on life lived post-pandemic, reminding us that it’s possible to draw meaning in the most unlikely of places.

As she searches the foreshore through the changing seasons, she is at times aided by the gentle illumination of the falling winter sun or hindered by bright summer skies and lashing rain. Yet, by working in harmony with the unpredictable terrain, she finds solace in aligning with the elements and uncovering the treasures that are bestowed by the tide. From medieval pilgrim badges and Tudor love tokens, to Georgian wig curlers and Victorian pottery, each passing day unearths ordinary and extraordinary objects that tell the rich story of London’s past and its inhabitants.

Mudlarking Year is a gentle ode to nature, history and the simple art of looking. Guided by Lara’s curiosity, warmth and wisdom, it is your invitation to discover hidden objects in the most overlooked part of the city, the secrets they reveal and the stories that are patiently waiting to be told.

Publisher: Bloomsbury Publishing PLC
ISBN: 9781526660756
Number of pages: 368
Dimensions: 234 x 153 mm


MEDIA REVIEWS

An absolute treasure trove of sound advice and historical detail, full of year-round inspiration - Katherine May

Catches the tide of history at just the point where obsession and heroic discipline lifts the journal of an individual into revelation open to us all. And it begins to feel as if the Thames itself is dictating as much of the story as we are allowed to know - Iain Sinclair

Lara Maiklem is a phenomenon. She elevates trudging around in the mud to an epic gallivant through our past. The foreshore is no longer a grubby backwater but our own valley of the kings, rich in beauty and poignancy’ - Dan Snow

A delightful, thought-provoking book, and a profound meditation on the variety of human experience. It is as if the Thames is a great confessional for everyone who has ever lived and worked in London, and Lara is the high priestess who gently hears them and relates their lives to our own. The best historians – and the rarest – are those who look at the past and do not simply objectify it, recounting what happened and why, but intercede between the living and the dead, conveying meaning and understanding so we can see ourselves in the perspective of time. Lara is such a person: a gifted, sympathetic writer who can find poetic truth in the flotsam of forgotten lives - Ian Mortimer

As with anything Lara Maiklem writes, I read it in a hungry gulp. It is totally transporting: the mysteries of the foreshore are ever enchanting, and in her hands, tangible. She writes with such elegance that I could read her day in, day out - Sophie Dahl

Evocative, beautifully written and endlessly fascinating, this is a book to get lost in, whatever the season. There is a delicious sense of anticipation and discovery throughout, and the reader is rewarded with a rich and eclectic trove of finds - from a Neolithic arrowhead to a Tudor posy ring. These seemingly disparate fragments of history unite to form a dazzling patchwork of the past - Tracy Borman

A beautiful, meandering book, much like the river itself, time and nature collide in the gloopy mud of the Thames. Enchanting, lyrical and historically fascinating - Sam Heughan

A Mudlarking Year is a beautiful reflection of what it means to be human. It is a connection to the past through both tangible history and the eternal cycle of nature that has always bound us. This is creative, thoughtful book that makes me want to sink my own hands into the silt of the river - Helen Carr

A Mudlarking Year is a book like no other: with her unequivocal talent and narrative flair, Lara Maiklem takes her readers on an enticing adventure and offers them the opportunity to encounter the lost objects of the past. Warm, personable, and thoroughly absorbing, A Mudlarking Year is a triumph of a page-turner and a truly inspirational read - Nicola Tallis

A Mudlarking Year is a lovely annual retrospective into what attracts people to wonder the stretches of Thames foreshore in search of the capital’s hidden history. Sun, rain or shine the searchers rituals are all too familiar and reminiscent of archaeological excavations and how the seasons can help or hinder in the process of artefact recovery. Ultimately this is a book about landscape and how humans can connect to special places they hold dear - Raksha Dave

Lara Meiklen is a natural historian and a born story teller who sees history from a different perspective. Her books have stopped me in my tracks and shown how changeless we are in spirit. In her finds, Lara skewers our predecessors and we meet them as if face-to-face. She has quietly graduated from the university of unobserved places, stepping out as Professor of the Underbelly and expert in the secrets of the Thames foreshore’ - Emma Bridgewater

A truly wonderful book, full of fascinating details from start to finish. A must read for any Londoner, as you'll see the city with fresh eyes. I loved it! - Alice Loxton

Lara Maiklem’s beautiful diary of mudlarking is a powerful reflection on time, history and attention to the present moment. Her voice is rich and warm, inviting to see beyond the surface of abandoned fragments of lost and shattered things to a deeper connection with the people of the past. For me, Maiklem’s work is not unlike that of the therapist who seeks to understand the history of people’s experience but must stand and look and not rush in too deep nor too fast - Gwen Adshead

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