The second Fairacre novel, from the bestselling author of VILLAGE SCHOOL.
In her first book VILLAGE SCHOOL Miss Read gave a picture of the small but detailed world of a typical primary school in a remote country area, a world peopled by the children themselves, Miss Clare the venerable infants teacher, glum Mrs Pringle the cleaner, the vicar and other inhabitants of Fairacre. In VILLAGE DIARY Miss Read describes the people of Fairacre with the same exactitude, sense of comedy and sharp observation.
In addition to those characters familiar to readers of VILLAGE SCHOOL there are newcomers, including dictatorial Amy, an old college friend, Mr Mawne, whom the village sees as a possible husband for the unwilling Miss Read and the earnest new infants teacher. Overshadowing everything, there is the mammoth country pageant in which Fairacre is so sharply and painfully divided...
Miss Read, or in real life Dora Saint, was a teacher by profession who started writing after the second world war, beginning with light essays written for Punch and other journals. She then wrote on educational and country matters and worked as a scriptwriter for the BBC. Miss Read was married to a schoolmaster for sixty-four years until his death in 2004, and they had one daughter.
Miss Read was awarded an MBE in the 1998 New Year Honours list for her services to literature, She was the author of many immensely popular books, including two autobiographical works, but it was her novels of English rural life for which she was best known. The first of these Village School, was published in 1955, and Miss Read continued to write about the fictional villages of Fairacre and Thrush Green for many years. She lived near Newbury in Berkshire until her death in 2012.
Two plays based on her work have been written by Ron Perry, Miss Read's Thrush Green and Miss Read Remembered.