Hunting Raven Books

Frome's Independent Bookshop

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Hunting Raven Books hosts World Book Night event – 23 April 2012

Hunting Raven Books hosted an evening of storytelling as part of the second WBN celebrations: Sharon Jacksties, West Country professional story teller delighted an invited audience of Hunting Raven customers.

Sharon has been a professional teller of traditional stories for over twenty years, telling to adults and young audiences in all kinds of settings. Running a number of community storytelling projects has enabled her to collect fascinating stories from local people, and she has been researching Somerset stories for a number of years.

Somerset Folk Tales – a collection of these stories was published this week and is beautifully illustrated by Jem Dick. Atmospheric music was played on the flute by Jem to accompany Sharon’s story telling.

We have a limited amount of signed copies of Somerset Tales available at Hunting Raven.

Below are the enthusiastic WBN Givers who arrived at Hunting Raven to collect their
World Book Night boxes of books to distribute on Monday 23 April.

New book on Bath by John Payne

Local author John Payne will be signing copies of his new book on Bath as part of National Libraries Day at Frome Library on Saturday 4 February from 11am to 12 noon.

If you can’t make John’s signing at Frome Library the book will be available to buy at Hunting Raven Books and we can arrange to have your copy signed by John.

Bath, Queen of the West, is internationally famous as one of England’s oldest and most beautiful cities. The picturesque setting in the Avon valley, surrounded by green hills knit town and country together. The hot mineral springs welling up from deep within the earth have given it unique advantages as a health and leisure resort.

The Romans called the city Aquae Sulis, and below the modern city are the important Roman Baths, one of England’s top tourist attractions. In medieval times a great abbey grew up here, a centre of scholarship as well as religion. Bath was an important Cotswold weaving centre before becoming a great Georgian spa city. As ‘taking the waters’ became an increasingly attractive leisure activity for visitors, a number of charity hospitals grew up around the hot springs. Then in the eighteenth century, great men such as Beau Nash the Master of Ceremonies and John Wood the architect transformed Bath into the grand Georgian city which we know today. Writers such as Henry Fielding and Jane Austen, and artists such as Thomas Gainsborough, settled in Bath.

John Payne reflects on the diversity of the modern city, where industry, sport and shopping take their place alongside tourism and heritage. He considers the continuing importance of religious faith in the city and the contribution to Bath’s cultural life made by its two universities and the many festivals, of which the winter Literature Festival and the springtime Bath International Music Festival are just two.

Like all cities, Bath changes through time, and this book looks at recent developments such as the superb new spa centre, Thermae Bath Spa, and the modernist extension to the Holburne Museum of Fine Art. An insider account that goes beyond the well-trodden city centre, it includes Bath’s attractive urban villages, such as Weston (a favourite walk of Jane Austen) and Combe Down with its stone quarries and Jewish burial ground.

John Payne is the author of books on Catalonia and the English West Country. Born in Bath, he lives in Frome, Somerset.

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