My Life in Houses

My Life in Houses

Book - 2014
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**As heard on BBC Radio 4**

'I was born on May 25, 1938, in the front bedroom of a house in Orton Road, on the outer edges of Raffles, a council estate. I was a lucky girl.'

So begins Margaret Forster's journey through the houses she's lived in, from that sparkling new council house, built as part of a utopian vision by Carlisle City Council, to her beloved London house of today, via Oxford, Hampstead, the Lake District and a spell in the Mediterranean.

This is not a book about bricks and mortar, or about how a house becomes a home with the right scatter of cushions.

This is a book about what houses are to us, the effect they have on the way we live our lives. It is also a wonderful backwards glace at the changing nature of our accommodation- from blacking grates and outside privies; to cities dominated by bedsits and lodgings; to houses today being converted back into single dwellings, all open-plan spaces and bringing the outside in.

Finally, it is a gently insistent, personal inquiry into the meaning of home.
Publisher: London : Chatto & Windus, ©2014.
ISBN: 9780701189105
Characteristics: 264 pages :,illustrations ;,21 cm


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Sep 20, 2016

What a delightful read this was. Here we have an intelligent writer who has manage to intrigue us with a story of her life largely told through the houses she lived in throughout her life. There is something wholesome in the story, something that captures an essence, not just of her life, but of something in the life of each of us. If you want a change from 'warts and all' style of biography, this is for you

Dec 15, 2015

A reminder to those who live in earthquake or other natural disaster prone areas. Take a current photo of houses etc, you have lived in, file it with older photos,with the address,dates and who lived in that house or apartment or flat when you lived there.
Margaret Forster has catalogued all the homes she has lived in and how she and the house has evolved.She shares a little of the stages of her personal life at that those times. However she tells us about the houses visited while researching for the biographies of Elizabeth Barrett Browning and Daphne du Maurier.
I enjoyed this uniquely
constructed part of Margaret Forster's life.

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