The Wind in the Willows

The Wind in the Willows

Hardback Collector's Library

By (author) Kenneth Grahame, Illustrated by Arthur Rackham, Afterword by David Stuart Davies

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  • Publisher: Macmillan Collector's Library
  • Format: Hardback | 280 pages
  • Dimensions: 96mm x 148mm x 16mm | 159g
  • Publication date: 1 March 2012
  • Publication City/Country: London
  • ISBN 10: 1904919510
  • ISBN 13: 9781904919513
  • Edition: New edition
  • Edition statement: Main Market Ed.
  • Illustrations note: illustrations
  • Sales rank: 26,976

Product description

When Mole tires of spring-cleaning his home, he takes a stroll to the riverbank. There he meets a new friend, Ratty, who introduces him to the delightful world of the river and all its residents. Beyond the river, which has now lured Mole away from home, lies the Wild Wood, where the reclusive Badger has made his home. The three animals become firm friends that winter when Ratty and Mole take refuge from the snow in Badgers house. Together they have many thrilling adventures with the irrepressible Mr Toad, who, try as he might, simply cannot help getting into trouble. Illustrated by Arthur Rackham, with an Afterword by David Stuart Davies

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Author information

Kenneth Grahame was born in Edinburgh in 1859. He was educated at St Edward's School, Oxford, but family circumstances prevented him from entering Oxford University. He joined the Bank of England as a gentleman clerk in 1879, rising to become the Bank's Secretary in 1898. He wrote a series of short stories, married Elspeth Thomson in 1899 and their only child, Alistair, was born a year later. He left the Bank in 1908, the year that The Wind in the Willows was published. Though not an immediate success, by the time of Grahame's death in 1932 it was recognised as a children's classic.

Editorial reviews

Does The Wind in the Willows need an annotated edition? Suggesting that Grahame's prose, "encrusted with the patina of age and affect," has become an obstacle to full appreciation of the work, Lerer offers the text with running disquisitions in the margins on now-archaic words and phrases, Edwardian social mores and a rich array of literary references from Aesop to Gilbert and Sullivan. Occasionally he goes over the top - making, for instance, frequent references alongside Toad's supposed mental breakdown to passages from Kraft-Ebing's writings on clinical insanity - and, as in his controversial Children's Literature, a Reader's History from Aesop to Harry Potter (2008), displays a narcissistic streak: "This new edition brings The Wind in the Willows...into the ambit of contemporary scholarship and criticism on children's literature..." Still, the commentary will make enlightening reading for parents or other adults who think that there's nothing in the story for them - and a closing essay on (among other topics) the links between Ernest Shepard's art for this and for Winnie the Pooh makes an intriguing lagniappe. (selective resource list) (Literary analysis. Adult/professional) (Kirkus Reviews)