The Wind in the Willows

C. Scribner's Sons
647

The Wind in the Willows is a children's novel by Kenneth Grahame, first published in 1908. Alternately slow moving and fast paced, it focuses on four anthropomorphised animals. The novel is notable for its mixture of mysticism, adventure, morality, and camaraderie and celebrated for its evocation of the nature of the Thames valley.In 1908, Grahame retired from his position as secretary of the Bank of England. He moved back to Berkshire, where he had lived as a child and spent his time by the River Thames doing much as the animal characters in his book do, namely, as one of the phrases from the book says, "simply messing about in boats" and expanding the bedtime stories he had earlier told his son Alistair into a manuscript for the book.....With the arrival of spring and fine weather outside, the good-natured Mole loses patience with spring cleaning. He flees his underground home, emerging to take in the air and ends up at the river, which he has never seen before. Here he meets Rat (a water vole), who at this time of year spends all his days in, on and close by the river. Rat takes Mole for a ride in his rowing boat. They get along well and spend many more days boating, with Rat teaching Mole the ways of the river....
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About the author

Kenneth Grahame was born on 8 March 1859 in Edinburgh, Scotland. When he was a little more than a year old, his father, an advocate, received an appointment as sheriff-substitute in Argyllshire at Inveraray on Loch Fyne. Kenneth loved the sea and was happy there, but when he was five, his mother died of puerperal fever, and his father, who had a drinking problem, gave over care of Kenneth, his brother Willie, his sister Helen and the new baby Roland to Granny Ingles, the children's grandmother, in Cookham Dean in the village of Cookham in Berkshire.There the children lived in a spacious, if dilapidated, home, The Mount, on spacious grounds in idyllic surroundings, and were introduced to the riverside and boating by their uncle, David Ingles, curate at Cookham Dean church. This ambiance, particularly Quarry Wood and the River Thames, is believed, by Peter Green, his biographer, to have inspired the setting for The Wind in the Willows. He was an outstanding pupil at St Edward's School in Oxford. During his early years at St Edwards, a sports regimen had not been established and the boys had freedom to explore the old city with its quaint shops, historic buildings, and cobblestone streets, St Giles' Fair, the upper reaches of the Thames, and the nearby countryside.

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Additional Information

Publisher
C. Scribner's Sons
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Published on
1908
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Pages
302
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ISBN
9781544283869
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Language
English
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Content protection
This content is DRM free.
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Read aloud
Available on Android devices
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