'I finished it with an ache in my heart and a tear in my eye'
From the author of Cider With Rosie, Village Christmas is a moving, lyrical portrait of England through the changing years and seasons.
Laurie Lee left his childhood home in the Cotswolds when he was nineteen, but it remained with him throughout his life until, many years later, he returned for good.
This collection brings to life the sights, sounds, landscapes and traditions of his home - from centuries-old May Day rituals to his own patch of garden, from carol singing in crunching snow to pub conversations and songs.
Here too he writes about the mysteries of love, living in wartime Chelsea, Winston Churchill's wintry funeral and his battle, in old age, to save his beloved Slad Valley from developers.
Told with a warm sense of humour and a powerful sense of history, Village Christmas brings us a picture of a vanished world.
'Brings to life the landscapes and traditions of Lee's home in Gloucestershire, from centuries-old May Day rituals and carol-singing on Christmas Eve, to his battle in old age to save his beloved Slad valley from developers'
'Simply written, observant and shot through with Lee's characteristic humility . . . Against his whitewashed prose are touches of beauty'
The Times Literary Supplement