Entries in Oaken Heart (8)


The Oaken Heart & village cricket

I think Margery Allingham would have liked this one -


May 1, 2011 Sunday


The Oaken Heart
by Margery Allingham
Golden Duck £13.99 % £11.99 inc p&p
Crime writer Margery Allingham, best known as the creator of Albert Campion, wrote this stirring tribute to the people of rural England in 1940, when the country lay under threat of German invasion.
It s a portrait of the Essex village in which she lived, disguised under the name of Auburn, and this splendid new edition also contains extracts from her diaries and letters. The Germans can bomb us all they like, she says, but nothing will get in the way of village cricket, which epitomises the very English secret of combining individualism with co-operative effort .


Oaken Heart as a 'retro read'

Val Hennessy in the Daily Mail


The 'Friend' Book Club

D.C. Thomson's People's Friend magazine has made The Oaken Heart their Book Club choice for April. When I think of the years that Margery's family - especially her father Herbert Allingham - laboured for 'the North' and never felt appreciated. Well, I wish Herbert was around to see this. Here's the ad.

Also I've got files of preremptory letters upstairs from dictatorial Dundee editors demanding that Herbert jump to their tune - yet the people I've been dealing with now couldn't have been more approachable and charming. Obviously we've all gone soft ...


The Oaken Heart of Village Life

Neil D'Arcy Jones of the Essex County Standard said he wished he had a job like mine. He thoroughly enjoyed meeting Alan Smith (son of Albert Smith, the Tolleshunt D'Arcy handyman who was such a practical and reassuring presence in the village) and Nora Curtis who had been a young wife and mother during the WW2 years.  Neil was right, of course, hearing the stories of people who experienced the events which are recorded in the new edition of The Oaken Heart has been a marvellous experience for which I am deeply grateful. But I wouldn't want him to undervalue his own expertise. From a morning's interviewing he produced a delightful article. Click here to read it.


How Essex Beat the Blitz

Generous and perceptive appreciation by Simon Heffer - entirely gets the point of this village book. Read it!