Sequel to the outstanding historical novel Earthly Joys, and written by the bestselling Philippa Gregory, the author of The Other Boleyn Girl and The Virgin’s Lover.
Earthly Joys followed the history of John Tradescant the great gardener, botanist and adventurer of the Seventeenth Century, and left the story at his death, with his son poised to continue the family traditions, by voyaging in search of land and new plants in America. Virgin Earth is the story of John, the son, in every way as fascinating and wilful a character as his father, and a man who lived through even more extraordinary times, with the expansion of the colony in America, the execution of one king and the restoration of another in England.
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‘The first lady of intelligent historical fiction’
‘When it comes to writers of historical fiction, Philippa Gregory is in the very top league’
‘[Earthly Joys] is brilliantly true to the period… I was entranced… Gregory promises us the continuation of the fictionalised story of the Tradescants in her next novel. Personally, I can’t wait’
‘A story textured with beautiful botanical detail’
Mail on Sunday
'Virgin Earth' is a tour-de-force of powerful politics, personal discovery and glorious gardening detail from one of our most acclaimed novelists.
John Tradescant the Younger has inherited his father’s unique collection of plants along with his unerring ability to nurture them. But as gardener to Charles 1, he confronts an unbearable dilemma when England descends into Civil War. Fleeing from the chaos, John travels to the Royalist colony of Virginia in America. But the virgin land is not uninhabited. John’s plant hunting brings him to live with the native people, and he learns to love and respect their way of life just as it is threatened by the colonial settlers.
In the new world and the old, the established order is breaking down and every family has to find its own way of surviving. For the Tradescants, through the upheavals of the Commonwealth and the Restoration, this means consolidating their reputations as the greatest gardeners in the country. In this terrific, free-standing sequel to 'Earthly Joys', Philippa Gregory again shows why she is hailed as “the first lady of intelligent historical fiction” by the 'Sunday Times'.
PRAISE FOR 'EARTHLY JOYS'
“When it comes to writers of historical fiction, Philippa Gregory is in the very top league … Gregory’s great achievement is to imagine the internal life and dramas of Tradescant, and to interweave his imagined private feelings and emotions with recorded historical fact”
VAL HENNESSY, 'Daily Mail'
“This is a hugely readable and moving book, which shows an impressive attention to detail”
PETER PARKER, 'Daily Telegraph'
“Gregory is that rare creature, a meticulous historical novelist who never fudges the facts to make a better story. Her book ffers a vivid and enthralling account of a turbulent period”
MIRANDA SEYMOUR, 'Sunday Times'
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Book Description HARPERCOLLINS PUBLISHERS LTD, 1999. Hardcover. Book Condition: New. Bookseller Inventory # P110002257599