Monday 22 August 2016

Summer: An Anthology for the Changing Seasons - Melissa Harrison

Summer is a season of richness: gold against blue; sun dazzle on water; sweet fragrance, and the sound of insects, filling the air. We feel the sand between our toes, or the grass beneath our feet. In these long, warm days, languid and sensual, we reconnect with the natural world, revelling in light and scent and colour once more.

Capturing the high point of the year’s progress, Summer presents prose and poetry spanning eight hundred years. Featuring new contributions by Simon Barnes, Michael McCarthy and Esther Woolfson, classic extracts from the work of Charles Dickens, Mary Webb and Philip Larkin, and diverse new nature writing from across the UK, this vibrant and evocative collection will inspire you to go out and enjoy the pleasures of summer.

What did I think?

Perhaps it is due to the British Summer being a bit of a wet weekend that I didn't really get a feel of Summer shining out of the pages, like I did with Spring.  There are some excellent passages in this collection and I was pleased to see Timothy the tortoise getting a mention, courtesy of the Reverend Gilbert White's The Naturalist's Journal from 1776.

I love how the classics mingle with modern day writings in this collection; you quickly switch from reading classics like Cider with Rosie by Laurie Lee to modern day writings of stars, butterflies and bees.  Each passage reminds us of lazy summer days with beautiful butterflies flitting between flowers and drunken bees weighed down with pollen.  Perhaps bees really were the origin of fairies, for what is more magical than seeing these little furry creatures buzzing around our garden?  It is almost unbelievable to think that one day bees might become extinct, then fairies really will be a thing of myth and legend.

Published in conjunction with The Wildlife Trusts, the sale of each anthology helps to raise funds for trusts throughout the UK.  The amazing cover of Summer perfectly captures the essence of the season and no stone is left unturned as each passage describes this most longed for season.

I received this book from the publisher, Elliott & Thompson in exchange for an honest review.

My rating:

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