The story of English culture over a thousand years can be told as the story of changing ideas about the weather. In a sweeping panorama, Weatherland allow us to witness cultural climates on the move, exploring how writers and artists, looking up at the same skies and walking in the same brisk air, have felt very different things. Alexandra Harris builds her remarkable account from small evocative details and catches the distinct voices of compelling individuals. 'Bloody cold', says Jonathan Swift in the 'slobbery' January of 1713. Percy Shelley wants to become a cloud, and John Ruskin wants to bottle one.
Weatherland is a celebration of English air and a life-story of those who have lived in it.
Chosen as Book of the Year by The Times, Sunday Times, Observer, Independent and Times Literary Supplement.
Winner: Longman – History Today Awards 2016, Historical Picture Researcher of the Year: Maria Ranauro
'Gathers all the written English centuries and sets them dancing to the seasons on the head of its pin'
Ali Smith, Times Literary Supplement
'A dazzling journey through the weather-worlds of English culture and history'
'A brilliant, beautiful and sensual book'
'Splendid … its glory is in the detail, in its recording of facts and lives, atmospheres and words, quirks of feeling and behaviour'
A. S. Byatt, Guardian
'A fascinating portrait of that most British of preoccupations'