Former Farlington School pupil, Alexandra Harris, has gained excellent reviews for her new book, ‘Weatherland: Writers & Artists Under English Skies’.
Her latest work has been included in many ‘books of the year’ lists for 2015 and is currently The Week’s ‘Book of the Week’.
It has garnered high praise from A.S. Byatt in The Guardian, Lucasta Miller in The Independent and James McConnachie in The Sunday Times.
Harris examines the creative impact of the British climate. Drawing on writers from Chaucer to Ian McEwan, she explores the ways in which the weather is daily recreated in the human imagination.
She describes ‘Weatherland’ as an attempt to watch cultural climates on the move: “The Anglo-Saxons before the Norman Conquest lived in a wintry world, writing about the coldness of exile or the shelters they must defend against enemies outdoors.
“The Middle Ages brought the warmth of spring; the new lyrics were sung in praise of blossom and cuckoos. It is hard to find a description of a rainy night before 1700, but by the end of the eighteenth century the Romantics will take a squall as fit subject for their most probing thoughts. As we enter what may be the last decades of English weather as we know it, I wanted to celebrate English air and the writers who have lived in it.”
Miss Lewis, Farlington’s Head of English, said: “We have followed Alex’s literary and academic career with great interest, and obviously we are very proud of her.
“This is yet another scholarly and fascinating work with a tremendous range of literary and artistic references - a remarkable feat.”
Report and picture contributed by Farlington School.