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Festival at Farbridge (Festival)

3.87  ·  Rating details ·  23 Ratings  ·  4 Reviews
Published in the US as Festival, in the United Kingdom it was always known as Festival at Farbridge, a novel written to coincide with the Festival of Britain in 1951. It probably never matched the popularity of some of Priestley's similar long picaresque novels (which he loved to write), such as The Good Companions, but in its way was a success with readers who enjoyed thi ...more
Hardcover, 1st Edition, 593 pages
Published 1951 by Harper and Brothers
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Jon
Jun 10, 2013 rated it really liked it
Craig Ferguson was recently very enthusiastic about this book on his late late night talk show--his literary novelist-guest confessed that he had never even heard of Priestley. So it goes. Priestley was enormously popular with the public, if not with all critics, from the 30s to the 60s. His radio talks in England were second in popularity only to those of Churchill. He was a novelist, playwright, literary and social critic, and essayist. A socialist who nevertheless opposed all forms of politic ...more
Simon Mcleish
Nov 16, 2012 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: owned
Originally published on my blog here in June 2001.

I had never really thought about the 1951 Festival of Britain, and had assumed that it hardly amounted to much outside the South Bank. Virtually every town and village in the country did something to mark the event, however, and Priestley's comic novel is about the preparations for this in the small town of Farbridge.

The main difficulty for me in 2001 is to try to think of the 1951 festival as something different from the limp and banal celebrati
...more
Craig
Jul 23, 2007 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Published in the U.S. as "Festival." A some-time con-man with a good heart, a Brit raised in the East Indies visiting England for the first time, and a recently unemployed young woman convince a rural town in England to participate in the Festival of Britain some few years after the end of World War II. Doesn't sound like much of a plot line, but this is a wonderful book. It's not Great Literature I suppose - no overtly transcendent themes or deep psychological insights - but it's filled with a ...more
Neil
Jun 21, 2010 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
One of Priestley's long ones, c. 600 pages.
Very good and typical more like an Ealing comedy than anything. Three very different people come together to help a small town stage a festival for the festival of Britain, far better and more interesting than it sounds!
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John Boynton Priestley, the son of a schoolmaster, was born in Bradford in September 1894, and after schooling he worked for a time in the local wool trade. Following the outbreak of the Great War in 1914, Priestley joined the British Army, and was sent to France --in 1915 taking part in the Battle of Loos. After being wounded in 1917 Priestley returned to England for six months; then, after going ...more