dirac

Rumer Godden children's books return to print

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Thursday's Children and Listen to the Nightingale by Rumer Godden are back in print.

Thursday’s Children and Listen To The Nightingale both paint very detailed pictures of children who dance ballet, and the world of the ballet school they attend: in both books it’s Queen’s Chase, a prestigious school in London.

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Thank you, dirac! I just ordered them for my 8-year-old granddaughter, who is a budding prima ballerina.

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Oh, I'd love to read these! I haven't heard Rumer Godden's name for years. I went to amazon--all I see is used copies from the 1990s, and I'd like to get the new editions. Where can I order them from?

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Stage Right, they're available at Amazon's UK site. Virago seems to have picked up other Godden titles as well (but not Pippa Passes).

You're very welcome, angelica. I hope your granddaughter enjoys them!

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Love Rumer Godden. I bought those books (and many others she wrote) at a used bookstore back when my daughter was a budding ballerina. Godden is one of my favorite authors.

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I enjoyed "In This House of Brede" although for no particular reason I didn't get around to her other books for adults. Which ones do you recommend, vagansmom?

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Since you've read "In This House of Brede," definitely follow it up with another book about nuns in India, "Black Narcissus." I like character-driven novels and this one explores how the nuns' different personalities respond to the jobs they each had to do and how their faith is tested. "The River" is another good one because it's considered the most autobiographical.

When I first read Godden, I was also reading Willa Cather. That year, 1980, I often alternated their books so much that in recent times, when I remember a book I have to go back to remind myself which woman penned it.

Also, Godden studied ballet during the period of time when she was living in England. She later ran a dance school in Calcutta.

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I just got my two books a few days ago, have read "Listen to the Nightingale", and am almost finished with "Thursday's Children". I love these books! So well written, and they remind me of the many English children's books I read in my childhood (these two books came along too late for my childhood, but I'm enjoying them just as much now). The characters are quite complex and so are the stories, and the author has a clear familiarity with the Royal Ballet School of her time. I'm happy to find out that Rumer Godden wrote at least two more books with ballet themes: "A Candle for St. Jude" (more of an adult book, I believe, which follows up on one of the characters in the Nightingale book), and "Pippa Passes" (for teens, not children). I don't think either of them involves the Royal Ballet School, but they are about ballet. I will probably order some used copies of those, as they are out-of-print. Excellent author.

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I loved her autobiography A Time to Dance, No Time to Weep. It spans her childhood and up through young adult years to the publication of Black Narcissus. Her tales of life in India and Kashmir are facinating.

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Thank you for reporting back, Stage Right (and you, too, vagansmom). I never got to "A Candle for St. Jude" but "Pippa Passes" definitely wasn't for kids.

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