A Small Country Living Goes on

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9780044406532: A Small Country Living Goes on

"Irresistible", full of "poignancy and humor, drama and beauty" raved reviewers about the first two volumes of Jeanine McMullen's enchanting account of her life on a farm in a legend-haunted valley in Wales. Now her canvas broadens to include her travels from Scotland to Cornwall collecting raw material for her hugely popular BBC radio program "My Small Country Living". 8 pages of full-color illustrations.

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From Kirkus Reviews:

``It is spring again in the valley,'' and for BBC radio host McMullen, time for further vibrant episodes in her personal and professional quest for the breadth of country lore. ``Little has changed but much has happened'' since My Small Country Living (1984) and Wing in the Ash Tree (1988) were published. McMullen's mother, ``Mrs P,'' still challenges the author's superstitions with her own; their animals still act out in unpredictable ways; and the Australian-born interviewer continues to travel through the British Isles finding memorable eccentrics on every back road. Willing to tell her tape recorder, ``Gert,'' what a friend calls ``God Wotted'' stories, McMullen's subjects ramble on entertainingly about rat-catching or local legends or the weather (``When it snows, we gets it''). There's an artist who paints only chickens, a fellow who breeds Old English game, and a family that repairs rocking horses. Some, like Lady Betjeman, are famous, while others, like a neighbor with ``a laugh like Father Christmas,'' stand out close to home. Writing in a seductive, breathless style, McMullen never fails to observe the singular natures before her, despite enduring travel hardships and serious crises at home. Toward book's end, Mrs. P must leave their Welsh farmhouse for a more hospitable Australian home, but the author stays on. Much in the manner of James Herriot, McMullen brings to print a record of the interchange between animals and their small-farm families. And going farther, she looks at the passions of unique craftsmen and special-interest amateurs and includes a sense of the vagaries of radio-show production. Even if you don't know a whistle stick from a thistle stick, you'll find this one glows. (Eight pages of full-color illustrations.) -- Copyright ©1991, Kirkus Associates, LP. All rights reserved.

From Publishers Weekly:

In My Small Country Living McMullen charmed readers with accounts of her livestock (every one a pet) on a mountain farm in Wales as well as her popular radio program (same title) about rural life in Britain. She continues here, with stories about getting material for the program and about life on the farm. It is an engaging collection of wacky personalities, odd crafts and rare breeds of domestic animals. She flits to Northern Ireland, the Scottish moors, Yorkshire Dales, Norfolk and Lancashire with her tape recorder, Gert, in hand. We meet an artist who paints chickens, another who makes graffiti tiles for barrooms. There are Irish Moiled cattle, Lonk sheep, the Queen Mother's Buff Orpington chickens and the last Welsh Hillman sheepdog (spayed). Back at the farm, the animals produce offspring, including a prize-winning goat. McMullen's feisty mother, Mrs. P., is hospitalized with a mysterious illness; her dog Winston howls all the time she is away. This lively tale of country ways will delight readers who like animals.
Copyright 1991 Reed Business Information, Inc.

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