A whole year group at Oakfield Middle School in Frome were kept enthralled for an hour when Karin Campagna came to visit to talk about how her real passion for reading started at age 11 and developed as she was growing up. There was a lot of audience interaction as pupils were eager to answer questions and share their own experiences. Karin told them her favourite books when she was growing up and brought some of them to show the pupils. She also talked about the book publishing industry and the challenges of running an independent book shop.
Local Frome author, Julian Hight celebrated the launch of his first book for The National Trust; ‘Britain’s Tree Story’, with a book signing at Hunting Raven Bookshop
A lavishly illustrated tribute to Britain’s oldest, largest and most famous trees told through legend, history and literature, this fascinating and lovingly researched book presents the most interesting of them and compares archive photographs and engravings with contemporary colour photographs. Trees have always inspired awe and wonder and many of our ancient trees have been standing for over a thousand years. Some of the trees featured have changed drastically over the centuries, while others seem to have hardly changed at all.
Many of the trees in Britain’s Tree Story are still standing and there is a gazetteer of where to see them, including in various National Trust properties. Britain’s Tree Story is a fascinating and beautifully illustrated celebration of Britain’s trees and the intriguing legends and stories that surround them, but in equal measure it is also a human story, as they play silent witness to our history.
Local trees included in the book are the great copper beech in St John’s churchyard – one of the few remaining Frome town centre trees to escape felling.
Wyndham’s Oak in Silton, thought to be a thousand years old and a gibbet for hangings during the Monmouth Rebellion of 1685.
The huge Abbey Green Plane tree in Bath, planted c1790, which may well have been known to Admiral Horatio Nelson who stayed in the square in 1798 to escape the fumes of London.
Simone Stanbrook-Byrne and James Clancy, visiting us at Hunting Raven
on Saturday 3 September
West Country Publishers, Culm Valley Publishing, and their A Dozen Dramatic Walks series of guides have gathered quite a following since their inception at the beginning of 2011. The local title, A Dozen Dramatic Walks in Somerset, has been very well-received and the authors, Simone Stanbrook-Byrne and James Clancy, came to Hunting Raven to sign copies and meet customers.
Not only do these books appeal to walkers, they are also proving extremely popular with photographers and bird watchers as the routes take people to the most spectacular scenery the county has to offer.
All the titles are researched and photographed by James and Simone to ensure accurate and appealingly-presented books which are quite different to the average walking guide. They encourage people out to the very best, most dramatic and, often, less well-known areas of the county. Also included are details of places to eat, places to stay and local tourist attractions, as well as wildlife and historic notes and points of interest for walkers, visitors, photographers etc.
Their other West Country titles include A Dozen Dramatic Walks in Devon, A Dozen Dramatic Walks in Cornwall and Circular Walks in Central Devon, all of which are available at Hunting Raven Bookshop.