‘A fine biography… Rogers has done a wonderful job’ Daily Telegraph
J. L. Carr was the most English of Englishmen: headmaster of a Northamptonshire school, cricket enthusiast and campaigner for the conservation of country churches. But he was also the author of half a dozen utterly unique novels, including his masterpiece, A Month in the Country, and a publisher of some of the most eccentric – and smallest – books ever printed.
Byron Roger’s acclaimed biography reveals an elusive, quixotic and civic-minded individual with an unswerving sympathy for the underdog, who led his schoolchildren through the streets to hymn the beauty of the cherry trees and paved his garden path with the printing plates for his hand-drawn maps, and whose fiction is quite remarkably autobiographical. Much more than the life of a thoroughly decent man, The Last Englishman is a comic and touching anatomy of the best kind of Englishness.
‘Conveying the significance of the author of Carr’s Dictionary of Extraordinary Cricketers to anyone unfamiliar with his books, or what may now fairly be called his myth, was always going to be difficult. Somehow, Roger’s has managed it’ D. J. Taylor, Sunday Times
‘A great success, and more life-affirming than F. R. Leavis’s entire output’ Independent on Sunday