Arthur Ransome is most famous as the author of Swallows and Amazons, but he was also a literary critic, a foreign correspondent, a fisherman and a sailor. The World of Arthur Ransome explores the places that shaped the writer. It tells the story of his childhood, his friendships, his two wives and daughter. It also describes how and where he wrote each of his twelve classic children's books, and the people and books that inspired them. There is no doubt that Ransome's spiritual home was the 'Lake in the North' where he set five of his twelve iconic books for children. He holidayed on the banks of Coniston Water as a boy and camped there as a young man, but his most important and longest-lasting home was Low Ludderburn, on the slopes of Cartmel Fell and close to Lake Windermere. There he wrote Swallows and Amazons and three of its sequels. Another four of his books were set in East Anglia, where he moved so that he could sail on the Norfolk Broads and the east coast rivers around Pin Mill. Here shipboard domestic arrangements came to the fore: all the cabins of his boats were equipped with writing desks and a bookcase. He was never happier than when writing while afloat in his favourite little yacht, the Nancy Blackett, immortalized as Goblin in We Didn't Mean to Go To Sea. With a keen and affectionate eye, Christina Hardyment places this most loved of English authors in the settings which so richly define his work.
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CHRISTINA HARDYMENT is the author of many books on 'literary geography', including Arthur Ransome and Captain Flint's Trunk (ISBN 9780711226920), Heidi's Alp (Atlantic Monthly) and Literary Trails (National Trust). She has also written a biography of Sir Thomas Malory and books about the social history of the home and the family, including Dream Babies (ISBN 9780711227996). She lives in a rambling house in Oxford with a huge garden, much enjoyed by her seven grandchildren. Time off is spent exploring the river Thames, in a British Moth dinghy and a camping punt.Review:
A pleasantly nostalgic journey that will have you searching out your old books once more. Field This beautifully illustrated book explores the places that shaped the writer, telling the story about his childhood, his friendships, his two wives and daughter. It also descibes how and where he wrote each of his 12 classic children's books. Suffolk & Norfolk Life Christina Hardyment celebrates a life of houses, boats and books. There are wonderful pictures of the man, with his fine, bushy moustache enjoying sailing and fishing and pictures of the houses and boats and nostalgic pictures of the old books in their old dust jackets just as they were when they were first read The Cumberland News If you're going to the Lakes, or you love Ransome's stories, this heavily-illustrated book is a treat Tribune 'It's a magnificent production, giving the illustrations plenty of space to breathe, and, most importantly, a great, well-researched read. I'm loving it.' Nancy Blackett Trust
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