Maggie Gee, Louisa Treger and Mary Hamer give short readings from and discuss their novels Virginia Woolf in Manhattan, The Lodger (telling the relationship between Dorothy Richardson and HG Wells) and Kipling and Trix, the stories of Rudyard Kipling and his sister.
Maggie Gee OBE, Fellow and Vice President of RSL and Professor of Creative Writing at Bath Spa University, was educated at Somerville College, Oxford. Author of eleven acclaimed novels, including The White Family (Shortlisted for the Orange and IMPAC prizes), My Cleaner and My Driver and a memoir My Animal Life, Maggie’s work has been translated into fourteen languages.
Louisa Treger, educated at the RCM and Guildhall School of Music, began her career as a classical violinist and worked as an orchestral player and teacher. She subsequently turned to literature, gaining a PhD in English at UCL. The Lodger is her first novel. www.louisatreger.com
Mary Hamer, educated at Oxford, taught at Cambridge for twenty years. Eight years ago she began to research the dangerous lives of Rudyard Kipling and his sister, Trix, believing only fiction could do justice to their story. Kipling & Trix won the Virginia Prize for Fiction. Her work has appeared in The Economist, The Guardian and The Independent. She has contributed to television and radio programmes, such as In Search of Cleopatra, Woman’s Hour and Night Waves. www.mary-hamer.com
Jane Robinson’s account of illegitimacy between WW1 and the Swinging Sixties: unmarried mothers considered immoral, single fathers feckless and bastard children inherently defective; long silent voices from the workhouse, the Magdalene Laundry and the distant mother-and-baby home; anonymous childhoods in the care of Dr Barnardo or a Child Migration scheme halfway across the world; but supportive families, defying social expectations, welcomed ‘love-children’ home, and those once parted were reconciled.
Jane Robinson read English at Somerville College, Oxford, and was in the antiquarian book trade in London before her first book Wayward Women. She is now a lecturer and writer specialising in social history through women’s eyes. Her broadcasting highlights include BBC One’s The One Show, and Radio 4’s Woman’s Hour and Excess Baggage. She contributes articles to – amongst others – The Times, The Independent, The Times Literary Supplement, and Nursing Standard. Her other books include Bluestockings (2009) and A Force to be Reckoned With, which she presented to a delighted Chipping Campden audience in 2014.
DIRTY OLD LONDON
Lee Jackson’s illustrated guide through the underbelly of the Victorian metropolis: the people who struggled to stem a rising tide of pollution and dirt, and the forces that opposed them.
Lee Jackson, editor of A Dictionary of Victorian London (2006), author of Walking Dickens’ London (2012) and of seven historical crime novels including the Inspector Webb series, is also the creator of the pre-eminent website on Victorian London www.victorianlondon.org
With over 11,000 followers, he has ‘a shameless addiction to twitter’ ‘Rich in wonderful contemporary details’ The Guardian
THE EDGE OF EXTINCTION
Jules Pretty’s illustrated account of people living close to the land and close to the edge from which emerges a larger story about sustainability and the future of the planet. Journey with Jules among Māori people along the coasts of the Pacific; into the mountains of China; across deserts of Australia; with nomads in southern Siberia; amid the wildlife-rich inland swamps of southern Africa; among ice fishermen in Finland; to small farms of the Amish; to the deep South swamps of the Cajuns; and to the deserts of California.
Jules Pretty OBE is Professor of Environment and Society at the University of Essex. As a Fellow of the Society of Biology and the RSA, he has served on advisory committees for numerous government departments. His experiences of growing up on the edge of the Sahel in Nigeria until he was six, and then ‘running free-range as a kid’ in Suffolk, nurtured his interest in nature and the environment.
His previous books include This Luminous Coast (2011) and The Earth Only Endures (2007).
Of his writing Times Higher Education states: ‘if we let it do its work, we will be subtly changed.’
With thanks to the Baptist Church
Book groups and individuals informally discuss with Patrick Gale his novel A Place Called Winter. Set in Edwardian England and the newly colonized Canadian prairies, it is a journey of self-discovery loosely based on a real life family mystery; a novel of secrets, sexuality and ultimately, of great love.
Patrick Gale spent his infancy at Wandsworth Prison, which his father governed, then grew up in Winchester before going to Oxford University. He now lives on a farm near Land’s End in Cornwall. His fifteen novels include A Perfectly Good Man and Notes From an Exhibition – both of which were Richard and Judy Book Club Selections. www.galewarning.org
Read ahead: Hardback available from The Borzoi Bookshop at the specially reduced rate of £12.99 (rrp £16.99). Tel: 01451 830268 www.borzoibookshop.co.uk
With thanks to Toke’s Food and Drink Tel: 01386 849345 www.tokesfoodanddrink.co.uk
This event is sponsored by Neil and Julie Hargreaves: Eight Bells 01386 841699 www.eightbellsinn.co.uk
Join acclaimed author, Jane Bingham, in the garden at Hidcote as she reads from her original short stories.
Incorporating real-life events and historical characters from the local area; each story is told from the perspective of one of Lawrence Johnston’s canine companions.
Call 01386 439801, or check website.