Woven from the words of the inhabitants of a small Suffolk village in the 1960s, Akenfield is a masterpiece of twentieth-century English literature, a scrupulously observed and deeply affecting portrait of a place and people and a now vanished way of life. Ronald Blythe’s wonderful book raises enduring questions about the relations between memory and modernity, nature and human nature, silence and speech.
About the Author
Ronald Blythe was born in 1922 in Suffolk, England, where his family has lived for centuries. He is the author of some thirty books including works of fiction, criticism, memoir, and social history, and has served as editor for a number of novels, poetry anthologies, and diaries. For the past twenty years he has written a weekly column for the Church Times about daily life in the Suffolk village of Wormingford, where he lives. He is the president of the John Clare Society and in 2006 received a lifetime acheivement award from the Royal Society of Literature.
Matt Weiland is a vice president and senior editor at W.W. Norton & Company. A former editor at Granta and The Paris Review, he is also the co-editor, with Sean Wilsey, of State by State: A Panoramic Portrait of America. His writing has appeared in the New York Times Book Review, The Washington Post, Bookforum, The New Republic, and The Nation, and he contributed the introduction to the NYRB Classics edition of Names on the Land: A Historical Account of Place-Naming in the United States by George R. Stewart.