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Slightly Foxed Issue 43
  • ISBN: 9781906562694
  • Pages: 96
  • Dimensions: 210 x 148mm
  • Illustrations: B/W
  • Publication date: 1 September 2014
  • Producer: Smith Settle
  • Cover artist: Pam Grimmond, ‘Weathervane’
  • ISSN: 1742-5794
Made in Britain

Slightly Foxed Issue 43

‘The Flight in the Heather’


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The independent-minded quarterly that combines good looks, good writing and a personal approach. Slightly Foxed introduces its readers to books that are no longer new and fashionable but have lasting appeal. Good-humoured, unpretentious and a bit eccentric, it’s more like a well-read friend than a literary magazine.

In this issue

John Walsh remembers his friend Beryl Bainbridge • Morag MacInnes rereads the haunting Orkney stories of Eric Linklater • Derek Parker recalls the world evoked by Arnold Bennett’s diaries • Melissa Harrison tucks Oliver Rackham’s History of the English Countryside into her backpack • Andrew Merrills journeys west with a monkey king • Victoria Neumark dips into a Walter de la Mare anthology • Dick Russell suggests that Churchill might have benefited from a reading of C. S. Forester’s novel The GeneralFrances Wood researches the explosive history of rhubarb • William Palmer is kidnapped • Cheryl Tipp listens to the memoirs of a birdman • Martin Sorrell takes pleasure in small things . . .

The Flight in the Heather • WILLIAM PALMER

Robert Louis Stevenson, Kidnapped

Grandma’s Footsteps • OLIVER PRITCHETT

Harold Carlton, Marrying Out

A Living Landscape • MELISSA HARRISON

Oliver Rackham, The Illustrated History of the Countryside

He Did His Duty • DICK RUSSELL

C. S. Forester, The General

Marvellous Therapy • JOHN WALSH

On the novels of Beryl Bainbridge

Written on the Heart • VICTORIA NEUMARK

Walter de la Mare (ed.), Come Hither

Winning Their Spurs • CHRISTIAN TYLER

Ronald Welch, Bowman of Crécy; The Hawk


Primo Levi, If This Is a Man; The Truce

With an Ear to the Earth • CHERYL TIPP

Ludwig Koch, Memoirs of a Birdman

Small Is Beautiful • MARTIN SORRELL

Philippe Delerm, La Première gorgée de bière

Monkey Business • ANDREW MERRILLS

Wu Ch’êng-ên, Monkey

Sleuthing with the Colonel • MARK VALENTINE

Philip MacDonald, The Gethryn books

A Love Affair with Orkney • MORAG MACINNES

Eric Linklater, Sealskin Trousers

The Purveyor of Popular Fiction • DEREK PARKER

Norman Flower (ed.), The Journals of Arnold Bennett

On Man, the Human Heart and Human Life • C.J. DRIVER

On the novels of Stanley Middleton

Growing Up with Winston • JIM RING

Winston Churchill, My Early Life


On the history of Chinese rhubarb

About Slightly Foxed

The independent-minded quarterly that combines good looks, good writing and a personal approach. Slightly Foxed introduces its readers to books that are no longer new and fashionable but have lasting appeal. Good-humoured, unpretentious and a bit eccentric, it’s more like a well-read friend than a literary magazine. Read more about Slightly Foxed.

Slightly Foxed Issue 43: From the Editors

Our anniversary year is almost over, and it’s been marked by many good things – not least the installation of a new kitchen area in the office by our very efficient and cheerful builder Pzremek....

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We love wood engravings and in the printed quarterly we have an occasional series to introduce the work of some of our favourite engravers. We'll be sharing a woodcut from our archive on the website...

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The Purveyor of Popular Fiction

Virginia Woolf unkindly called Bennett ‘a tradesman’ – and up to a point one sees what she meant. He did not thrive on the rarefied air of Bloomsbury: he was Enoch Arnold Bennett, late of...

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Grandma’s Footsteps

The first thing that strikes one about the Conway family is the noise. The air is filled with Father’s sudden roars of rage, the slaps he lands on his son Howard, and his two other children, the...

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The Flight in the Heather

I saw the set of books through the window of a second-hand furniture shop in Oxford a couple of years ago. Each with a dark-blue spine stamped with a gilt palm tree, they ran across the top of one of...

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A Living Landscape

It began, I seem to remember, with a grown-out hedge: four huge ash trees bordering a Hampshire footpath, all with the same odd kink in their trunks. The pleasure of recognition, of being able to...

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He Did His Duty

I have read most of C. S. Forester’s books, but had never come across The General until I found a copy last year in a second-hand shop. It nestled next to a biography of Winston Churchill written...

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Marvellous Therapy

I first met Beryl Bainbridge in 1982, when I went to interview her friend and editor Anna Haycraft for Books & Bookmen. I was later to discover that Beryl practically lived at the Haycrafts’ house...

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Written on the Heart

My mother used to read to us on the battered old couch. As the light faded, we would snuggle up and read along with her pointing finger. It was magic; it was spells; it was home. Her glasses slightly...

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Winning Their Spurs

I never read Ronald Welch as a child – he was writing a bit too late for me – but his historical adventure stories have a very familiar ring. In Bowman of Crécy and The Hawk I recognized with...

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Is a sequel ever as good as its original? Primo Levi’s autobiographical account of Auschwitz (If This Is a Man) is a celebrated book while its follow-up (The Truce) remains less well known. But...

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With an Ear to the Earth

Koch’s Memoirs of a Birdman opens in 1889 when, at the age of 8, he made the world’s first ever recording of an animal, and closes in 1953 when he fulfilled a lifelong ambition to visit Iceland...

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Monkey Business

Television in the 1970s and 1980s was educational. Bergerac taught us that Jersey was a seething cauldron of crime; Grange Hill introduced a generation of children to sausages and heroin. And Monkey?...

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Small is Beautiful

Recently, ailing and housebound, I looked for succour in a book by a contemporary French novelist, one I remembered hugely enjoying when it first appeared. A good read has to be high on the list of...

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Sleuthing with the Colonel

This relative neglect is all the more surprising because MacDonald was much admired by his peers. He was awarded the Edgar Allan Poe prize twice. His early novel The Rasp (1924), which introduced his...

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A Love Affair with Orkney

Eric Linklater was a bit of a force of nature. He was born in Wales, but wished he hadn’t been, so he conjured an Orkney childhood and let everyone assume he had been born there. His father was...

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On Man, the Human Heart and Human Life

One of my favourite novelists, now largely forgotten, is Stanley Middleton (1919–2009). He wrote 45 novels, the last published posthumously. I thought I had them all, but when reorganizing my...

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Growing Up with Winston

Born in 1874, the son of a Chancellor of the Exchequer contemporary with Gladstone and Disraeli, he made his name as a journalist covering the Boer War, became an MP at 26, President of the Board of...

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