Christmas at High Rising by Angela Thirkell

Christmas at High Rising cover

Christmas at High Rising by Angela Thirkell is a collection of her short stories which appeared in various magazines such as Cornhill Magazine and Harper’s Bazaar ranging in date from 1928 to 1942.

I was slightly disappointed with this collection because due to the title I had been under the impression that the stories were all Barsetshire related – but they aren’t. The ones that are mainly feature the Morlands and George Knox. Although Knox is a character that Thirkell was obviously having a bit of a laugh at as a typical know-it-all poser and bore, she generally takes him just a wee bit too far ending in him being a bit too tedious as far as I’m concerned.

The stories feature such things as a trip to a pantomime, an arty one involving people at a private view and some children who live in London with their parents and a nanny who is very much in control – compared with the mother anyway.

If you’re a fan of Thirkell you’ll probably want to read this book as we all tend to want to read whatever of hers is available – unless of course George Knox drives you round the bend!

8 thoughts on “Christmas at High Rising by Angela Thirkell

    • Jennifer,
      Yes she often goes just too far with George Knox. I’m glad I read it anyway as I like to complete everything written by favourite authors.

  1. I was disappointed as well! I think the title is more than a bit misleading. I did enjoy the chapter/story that was a reminiscence of a child’s Christmas. Have you read her autobiography, Three Houses? I’ve been meaning to re-read it.

    George Knox does get tedious, but I find Tony Morland’s antics even more annoying (I may have said that before).

    • Lisa,
      Yes it was bound to be a disappointment – given the title. I haven’t been able to get a hold of a copy of Three Houses yet. If I get it soon maybe we can have a readalong.
      You may have said that Tony Morland is annoying before – but it’s always worth repeating!

  2. I think that Thirkell was a strong writer if only because some of her characters provoke such strong feelings! “High Rising” itself is a great book to introduce the characters, but anti – Tony Morland readers will find “Demon in the House” really annoying! I must admit I missed this review first time round, so thanks for adding it!

    • Julie Barham,
      I’m sure you’re right about it proving she’s a strong writer. It’s just like when you really despise a character in a drama – it means the writing and the acting is really good. I’m reading all of Thirkell’s books again – in the right order this time! Thanks for taking the time to drop by and comment.

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