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More About This Title A Place in My Country
Chasing memories of the losses of his brother and father, the author, a young newspaper director, and his Australian wife visit the Cotswolds. On a whim they buy a cottage and Ian resigns. They slowly get to know Norman, their inscrutable and apparently terrifying neighbor; Geoff, the ebullient landlord of their eclectic local barlast bastion against the encroaching gastropub; and Tom, an ex-gamekeeper, who lets Ian see something of a hidden rural culture. The delightful aspects of village life and an ever-changing landscape are evocatively captured; but it is from working with Norman on his small chaotic farm that they learn about the loss of the countryside to industrial farming and of no-longer affordable housing to the dreaded "white settlers." Shadows of the past and a seemingly segregated social world around them begin to cast doubts on whether this is the place for them. This is a gentle lesson in taking time to confront our losses, memories, and prejudices to discover a revitalized life in the country.