Desert Islands by Walter de la Mare

Desert Islands

Written by Walter de la Mare
Illustrated by


Desert Islands by Walter de la Mare

Desert Islands opens with a captivating essay on the romance of islands and castaways in literature and life, and the associations that have arisen in the imagination of readers in every generation. The essay leads on to over 200 pages of what de la Mare himself calls 'a rambling commentary', in the form of an anthology or commonplace book on every conceivable aspect of this teeming subject. There are notes, reflections and quotations from a lifetime's reading on wrecks, maroons, pirates, utopias, goats, hallucinations, exotic foods, misers, punishments, solitude , Darwin, parrots, idols, saints, hermits, maps, spices, drugs . . . and of course Daniel Defoe.Desert Islands is the perfect bedside or holiday book. It also playfully boasts a subtitle of rococo inventiveness and one of the longest you will ever read!'A vast treasure chest, a bewildering collection . . . to dazzle and fascinate everyone who lifts the lid.' Geoffrey Grigson

About the Author

Walter de la Mare (1873-1956) was born in Charlton, Kent. In 1890, aged sixteen, he began work in the statistics department of the London office of Anglo-American Oil. In 1907 he published his first collection of poems under the pseudonym Walter Ramal, but he soon established a wide popular reputation in his own name as a leading poet of the Georgian period with volumes like The Listeners (1912), Motley (1918) and The Veil (1921). He also wrote poetry and short stories for younger readers; Peacock Pie (1913), a collection of poems for children, is now considered a twentieth-century classic.

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Book Info


316 pages


Walter de la Mare
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Faber & Faber

Publication date

21st January 2010



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