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A Time of Gifts by Patrick Leigh Fermor at Abbey's Bookshop,

A Time of Gifts

Patrick Leigh Fermor Jan Morris


9781590171653

New York Review of Books


Travel & holiday;
Travel & holiday guides;
Classic travel writing


Paperback

321 pages

$31.95
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At the age of eighteen, Patrick Leigh Fermor set off from the heart of London on an epic journey to walk to Constantinople. A Time of Gifts is the rich account of his adventures as far as Hungary, after which Between the Woods and the Water continues the story to the Iron Gates that divide the Carpathian and Balkan mountains. Acclaimed for its sweep and intelligence, Leigh Fermor s book explores a remarkable moment in time. Hitler has just come to power but war is still ahead, as he walks through a Europe soon to be forever changed through the Lowlands to Mitteleuropa, to Teutonic and Slav heartlands, through the baroque remains of the Holy Roman Empire; up the Rhine, and down to the Danube. At once a memoir of coming-of-age, an account of a journey, and a dazzling exposition of the English language, A Time of Gifts is also a portrait of a continent already showing ominous signs of the holocaust to come.

By:   Patrick Leigh Fermor
Introduction by:   Jan Morris
Imprint:   New York Review of Books
Country of Publication:   United States
Dimensions:   Height: 208mm,  Width: 161mm,  Spine: 19mm
Weight:   331g
ISBN:   9781590171653
ISBN 10:   1590171659
Series:   New York Review Books Classics
Pages:   321
Publication Date:   October 2005
Audience:   General/trade ,  ELT Advanced
Format:   Paperback
Publisher's Status:   Active


This is a glorious feast, the account of a walk in 1934 from the Hook of Holland to what was then Constantinople. The 18-year-old Fermor began by sleeping in barns but, after meeting some landowners early on, got occasional introductions to castles. So he experienced life from both sides, and with all the senses, absorbing everything: flora and fauna, art and architecture, geography, clothing, music, foods, religions, languages. Writing the book decades after the fact, in a baroque style that is always rigorous, never flowery, he was able to inject historical depth while still retaining the feeling of boyish enthusiasm and boundless curiosity. This is the first of a still uncompleted trilogy; the second volume, Between the Woods and the Water, takes him through Hungary and Romania; together they capture better than any books I know the remedial, intoxicating joy of travel. -- Thomas Swick, South Florida Sun-Sentinel <br> Recovers the innocence and the excitement of youth, when everything was possible and the world seemed luminescent with promise. ...Even more magical...through Hungary, its lost province of Transylvania, and into Romania... sampling the tail end of a languid, urbane and anglophile way of life that would soon be swept away forever. --Jeremy Lewis, Literary Review <br> A book so good you resent finishing it. --Norman Stone <br> The greatest of living travel writers...an amazingly complex and subtle evocation of a place that is no more. -- Jan Morris <br> In these two volumes of extraordinary lyrical beauty and discursive, staggering erudition, Leigh Fermor recounted his first great excursion... They're partially about an older author's encounter with his young self, but they're mostly an evocation of a lost Mitteleuropa of wild horses and dark forests, of ancient synagogues and vivacious Jewish coffeehouses, of Hussars and Uhlans, and of high-spirited and deeply eccentric patricians with vast libraries (such as the Transylvania

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