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Wednesday, 17 July 2013

Tarka The Otter

This photo was taken by me at an Otter sanctuary in Suffolk.

I keep meaning to write about our Easter holiday, and post a few more pictures. I have also been trying to get to the end of reading "Tarka The Otter" by Henry Williamson, so I could write about that at the same time. But I had to wait for Frankie to finish it, before I could even start.


We were staying for a week in Skirr Cottage, in North Devon, where Henry Williamson lived while he was writing the book. As you can see it was very old and beautiful. I did think it would be rather wonderful for the whole family to sit in the evening reading this classic together in the place it was actually written (possible with me knitting an otter), but perhaps my children have got a bit old for that, and at the time I was concentrating on my shells and didn't want to start a brand new project. So Little One got her hands on the book first, and although I think she found it quite hard going at times, did get to the end (she is 10 years old).


Now I have finished reading "Tarka The Otter" as well. I had always thought it was a children's book, but in fact it was intended for adults. The descriptions of nature are beautiful, but also it doesn't pull any punches.  But I guess nature can be cruel. It reminded me a bit of Watership Down, although the animals are much less anthropomorphic (Do hope that is the right word!).

20 comments:

  1. I agree not a children's book- I abandoned it as a child, but loved when I read it as an adult, and you can stay in his cottage- amazing experience, thanks for sharing!

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  2. I tried reading it as a child but it was too upsetting. Lovely photo of the otter xx

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  3. I haven't read this actually, I think my sisters said it was sad and that put me off. I love that otter photograph, L adores otters, I will have to show her tomorrow.

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  4. What a fine home, did you get pictures of the inside? An adorable otter posing for you.

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  5. I've never heard of it, but it sounds quite interesting. What a wonderful old home the author had for inspiration!

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  6. One of my favorite stories was 'Ring of Bright Water,' also about an otter and the rough wilds of the north coast of the UK. Thank you for joining in 'Rurality Blog Hop #23' Hope to see you next Wednesday for #24...

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  7. That's a book I've never heard of. I'll have to look for it!

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  8. I confess to not having heard of Williamson or his otter book. But his home is lovely :-)

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  9. He is so cute. I am not familiar with the children's book.

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  10. Love the shots of the cottage and the otter...and the book at the end makes a nice touch.

    Here's
    MY SATURDAY SNAPSHOT POST

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  11. Now that's a great way to spend a vacation...a lit site and time spent reading the book. Lovely.

    Off to find out more about this book. And I'd like to pin your post to my Pinterest page on Lit Sites, if you don't mind.

    Here's my Saturday Snapshot, a visit to Blue Willow Books to hear children's picture book author and illustrator, John Rocco.

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  12. Cute otter. I love the house. Architecture is always my favorite.

    THANKS for sharing.

    Elizabeth
    Silver's Reviews
    My Saturday Snapshot

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  13. So glad you shared with us. Wonderful that you both read the same book.

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  14. I love otters! Part of it is because my last name (Ott) just lends itself to Otters. My frequent online name is OtterMommy!

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  15. Haven't seen an otter before. Hmm... we have beavers. Maybe this is not Otter country here in Alberta, Canada (?)

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  16. I love otters!! I had a shirt with otters on it and wore it so much I wore it out! I think it's neat that you got to visit the home of the author. I haven't heard of the book before.

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  17. Great shot of the otter. I hadn't heard of the book before. I'll look for it. Here's Mine

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  18. I haven't heard of Tarka the Otter before. Although I don't like sad stories, I may have to check it out because of it being a realistic portrayal of animals. The novel to which you compared it, Watership Down, is actually one of my favorite books.

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