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Tennyson’s Gift

Tennyson’s Gift

Author(s): Lynne Truss

Location(s): Isle of Wight

Genre(s): Fiction, Historical

Era(s): 1860s

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In July 1864, a corner of the Isle of Wight is buzzing with literary and artistic creativity. A morose Tennyson is reciting ‘Maud’ to empty sofas: the photographer Julia Margaret Cameron is white-washing the roses for visual effect and the mismatched couple, actress Ellen Terry and painter G. F. Watts, are thrown into the company of the remarkable Lorenzo Fowler, the American phrenologist, and his daughter Jessie. Enter mathematician Charles Dodgson (aka Lewis Carroll), known to Jessie as the ‘fiendish pedagogue’, and Lynne Truss’s wonderfully imaginative cocktail of Victorian seriousness and riotous farce begins to take flight.

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Lead Review

‘ wonderfully inventive jeu d’esprit… This epic of the Isle of Wight’s literary apogee is virtually the perfect summer book. No deck-chair will be complete without it’ Independent

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