96. D.E. Stevenson - Miss Buncle's Book


For this episode John and Andy are joined  by the novelist Shelley Harris. Shelley is the author of two novels: her debut, Jubilee (Weidenfeld & Nicolson), was shortlisted for the Commonwealth Book Prize, a Radio 4 Book at Bedtime and a Richard and Judy selection. Her second, Vigilante (also from Weidenfeld), about a feminist wannabe superhero, was described by The Times as ‘entertainment wrapped round a tense thriller’. She is a lecturer in Creative Writing at the University of Reading and is working on her third novel. Her favourite book is Michael Chabon's The Amazing Adventures of Kavalier and Clay but the book she has chosen for Backlisted is  Miss Buncle’s Book by D.E. Stevenson first published by Herbert Jenkins in 1934, and republished in an exquisite new edition by Persephone Books in 2008. This episode also features Andy being intrigued by Sam Riviere’s 81 Austerities (Faber 2012), a collection that wrests poetry of the fragmentary world of social media, and John wallows in the soil and sadness of How to Catch a Mole by Marc Hamer, published by Harvill Secker.

Books mentioned:

D.E. Stevenson – Miss Buncle’s BookMiss Buncle Married;The Two Mrs Abbotts
Shelley Harris – Jubilee; Vigilante
Sam Riviere – 81 AusteritiesKim Kardashian’s Marriage; Safe Mode
Marc Hamer – How to Catch a Mole
Michael Chabon – The Amazing Adventures of Cavalier & Clay
Paul Kingsnorth – The Wake
Alice Jolly – Mary Ann Sate, Imbecile
Arthur Machen – The Great God Pan
Sylvia Townsend Warner – Lolly Willowes
Kenneth Grahame – The Wind in the Willows
Elizabeth Jenkins – The Tortoise and the Hare
Charles Williams – Descent into Hell

‘Village’ books:
Adam Thorpe - Ulverton
Ronald Blythe – Akenfield
John Wyndham – The Midwich Cuckoos
Miss Read – The School at Thrush Green
Agatha Christie  - 4.50 from Paddington
Penelope Fitzgerald – The Bookshop

Other links:

 The Kinks – ‘Village Green’ 
Opening voiceover from Went the Day Well
Deadwood on DVD
Interview with David Milch in the New Yorker (May, 2019)
Mark Rylance reading from The Wake