To the River: A Journey Beneath the Surface

by Olivia Laing.

A literary walk down the Sussex Ouse.

To the River

To the River is a literary account of a solo four-day walk Olivia Laing took from the source of the River Ouse in Sussex to the sea. This particular River Ouse—for there are several—is, perhaps, most famous for being the river in which Virginia Woolf drowned herself. Woolf is a constant companion of Laing's during the walk. (I speak figuratively, obviously.)

Along the way, Laing tells us about the history of the river and the surrounding countryside, its natural history, and even its prehistory—real, and in the case of Piltdown Man, fabricated. As well as Virginia Woolf, she also muses about other literary figures, including Iris Murdoch and Kenneth Grahame.

A nice book.

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Richard Carter

A fat, bearded chap with a Charles Darwin fixation.

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