Friday, May 04, 2007

BOOK REVIEW: Beatrix Potter: A Life in Nature

Beatrix Potter: A Life in Nature by Linda Lear

This is an astounding and comprehensive biography of the talented Miss Potter. Lear uses Potter’s own writings, first her coded diary, then her copious correspondence, to give a glimpse into the life and times of this talented children’s author.

Potter was obviously smarter than her time was ready for, and a dutiful daughter to rather difficult parents. Her personality shines through the pages of this book (not as long as it appears, since there are copious notes at the end) and we really get a taste for what she was really like.

I am not usually a biography reader, because I have a dislike of the inevitable ending, but Lear gives a wonderful rendition of the life of Miss Potter, later Mrs. Heelis. She takes us from the adolescent writings, through the mature end of life correspondence. We learn of the likes of the irrepressible author; from her initial fascinating with mycology (the study of fungi) to the farm-life she adopted in later years, and her lifelong aim of preserving the natural beauty of England. This book is a great read, and well recommended.

* * * * * 5 Stars!

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