Goodbye West Country

Hardback, Putnam, first edition, September 1937; with photographs by the author.

Book condition: lacking the dust wrapper, binding worn and partially split, some foxing internally. Book plate on inside front cover.
Price: £5.00


The publisher's blurb to this edition states: 'Goodbye West Country is unlike any other book that Mr. Williamson has written. It shares with his other volumes the intense love of nature, the uncanny observation of her moods and of the wild things with which this author has the knack almost of identifying himself; but above everything else it is intimate and autobiographic to an extraordinary degree – the frank revelation of an author's personality. There are no reservations, few reticences. Here, the author seems to say to his readers, is the man whose books you have been reading these many years – and he tells with utter frankness of his successes and failures, his likes and dislikes, his prejudices and preferences; the petty annoyances and difficulties, the disappointments and satisfactions of an author's life. He tells of the great and humble; of friends and enemies; of country neighbours and their wives; of visitors and relations and visiting "fans". He gives his opinions on politics and literature, on scribes and on pharisees. And then, having wandered far afield – to the Nürnberg rally of the Nazis or to King George V's funeral in London – he will come back to the Devon countryside and give us one of those unsurpassable sketches of otter or salmon, red deer or badger, birds, fishes, plants or insects, which have so gained the love of his readers.


'This appealing book is in truth Mr Williamson's valedictory to Devon, which he has now left for a farm in Norfolk, and in form it is a chronicle of his last year in the Devon countryside – the round of seasons from January to December. Actually, it is a fascinating self-portrait of Henry Williamson.'


(For a further consideration of the book and the background to the writing of it, see Anne Williamson's Goodbye West Country.)