A Month in the Country
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A Month in the Country

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A sensitive portrayal of the healing process that took place in the aftermath of the First World War, J.L. Carr's A Month in the Country includes an introduction by Penelope Fitzgerald, author of Offshore, in Penguin Modern Classics. A damaged survivor of the First World War, Tom Birkin finds refuge in the quiet village church of Oxgodby where he is to spend the summer uncovering a huge medieval wall-painting. Immersed in the peace and beauty of the countryside and the unchanging rhythms of village life he experiences a sense of renewal and belief in the future. Now an old man, Birkin looks back on the idyllic summer of 1920, remembering a vanished place of blissful calm, untouched by change, a precious moment he has carried with him through the disappointments of the years. Adapted into a 1987 film starring Colin Firth, Natasha Richardson and Kenneth Branagh, A Month in the Country traces the slow revival of the primeval rhythms of life so cruelly disorientated by the Great War Joseph Lloyd Carr (1912-1994) attended the village school at Carlton Miniott in the North Riding and Castleford Secondary School. A head teacher, publisher and novelist, his books include A Day in Summer (1964); The Harpole Report (1972); A Month in the Country (1980), which won the Guardian Fiction prize and was shortlisted for the Booker Prize; The Battle of Pollock's Crossing (1985), which was also shortlisted for the Booker Prize; What Hetty Did (1988) and Harpole and Foxberrow, General Publishers (1992). If you enjoyed A Month in the Country, you might like Ford Madox Ford's Parade's End, also available in Penguin Modern Classics. 'Unlike anything else in modern English literature' D.J. Taylor, Spectatorshow more

Product details

  • Paperback | 128 pages
  • 126 x 192 x 8mm | 99.79g
  • Penguin Books Ltd
  • London, United Kingdom
  • English
  • 3rd ed.
  • 014118230X
  • 9780141182308
  • 28,220

Review quote

Tender and elegant Guardian Unlike anything else in modern English Literature -- D.J. Taylor Spectator Carr's blessedly small tale of lost love is also a small hymn about art and the compensating joy of the artist, both in giving and receiving. It stays with us, too, and is oddly haunting New Yorker Carr has the magic touch to re-enter the imagined past -- Penelope Fitzgeraldshow more

About J. L. Carr

James Lloyd Carr, born 1912, attended the village school at Carlton Miniott in the North Riding and Castleford Secondary School. He died in Northamptonshire in 1994. His novel A Month in the Country won the Guardian Fiction Prize, was shortlisted for the Booker Prize and made into a memorable film.show more

Review Text

Tender and elegant Guardianshow more

Rating details

4,234 ratings
4.07 out of 5 stars
5 37% (1,566)
4 39% (1,666)
3 19% (792)
2 4% (177)
1 1% (33)
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