Recreating a Lost World: Henry Williamson and Folkestone 1919-20: fact into fiction (e-book)
By Anne Williamson. Illustrated, approx. 28 print pages, paperback, Henry Williamson Society, 2008; e-book 2014
ISBN: 978-1-873507-68-1 (Kindle)
ISBN: 978-1-873507-69-8 (EPUB)
The Dream of Fair Women, the third novel in The Flax of Dream tetralogy, was first published in 1924. It is set in Folkestone in the immediate post-First World War period of 1919, where Henry Williamson, not yet a published writer and still in the army, was adjutant of No. 3 Rest Camp on the Leas. It tells the story of the love affair of the hero Willie Maddison (essentially Williamson himself) with the very desirable Eve Fairfax, the young wife of an army officer living in Folkestone. There are vividly written scenes of the town and its inhabitants during the summer of 1919, and in particular the Peace Day celebrations which took place on 19 July, culminating in a grand ball.
This era and place are also captured in two books in the Chronicle of Ancient Sunlight series: A Test to Destruction (1960) and The Innocent Moon (1961).
Recreating a Lost World explores the real Folkestone and its personalities at that time, identifying the real-life models for fictional characters and showing how Henry Williamson translated place and people, and his own experiences, into his novels. Anne Williamson weaves a fascinating and informative story. It is illustrated with eleven unique photographs from the Henry Williamson Literary Estate’s archive and other illustrations.
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