The Book Hut Giveaway | July 2015

Each month I give away a book – these vary from month to month, depending on what I have that looks interesting! They are all second hand books, some more tatty and well loved than others, but all in tact.

To take part in the giveaway, you just need to comment on the blog post at the bottom of the page, on the subject listed below.


Gold – Jonathan Khoo
London Travel Guides –  Jenna M

Please email me with your address and I will post your book to you. Thank you very much for taking part and I hope you enjoy the book.


Stanley Spencer
Stanley Spencer
A Biography by Kenneth Pople

A Biography by Kenneth Pople

This is the first biography of Stanley Spencer to be written with the full co-operation of Spencer’s family, and access to his letters and diaries. Kenneth Pople’s method is to advance biographically by examining the pictures in detail. His analysis demonstrates that there never was an artist for whom life and art were so much of a piece, and that without understanding Spencer’s doings and circumstances, we have no hope of understanding the paintings. He reveals for the first time, for example, the complexity of Spencer’s thinking behind his divorce of his first wife and life-long inspiration, Hilda, his marriage to his lesbian second wife, and his desperate attempts therafter to establish a menage a trois. Spencer was, as is well-known, born, brought up, and for the whole of his life rooted in the tiny community of Cookham on the Thames. The sense of place which is everywhere prevalent in Spencer’s paintings is examined in this biography. This work integrates biography, analysis of paintings and extracts from Spencer’s own writing.


One of your favourite early 21st century artists

(Comments box is at the bottom of the post)


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6 Replies to “The Book Hut Giveaway | July 2015”

  1. I like to start these giveaways off, so here goes:

    One of my favouite early 21st century artists is Stanhope Forbes, thanks to the introduction into his work by my sister doing a doctorate study on him.

  2. This is a wonderful choice, Maudie. Stanley Spencer was one of the greatest artists of the 20th century and his reputation continues to soar. Pople is such an insightful writer, too.

    More than standing the test of time, there is so much to explore and marvel at in Spencer’s multi-faceted works with their many layers of meaning. Stanley Spencer could compose paintings like nobody else. The patterns, textures and rhythms of his work have been said to ‘ring like music’ and the scale and magnitude of some of his paintings is simply stunning.

    Until this Sunday, 19th July, Book Hutters have the opportunity to nominate Stanley Spencer as the Visual Artist whose image should appear on the next £20 note. The Bank of England’s criteria relate to creativity and ‘breadth of contribution’ to British thought, values and society. The artist must be no longer living. Do visit for a full account of the reasons why Stanley Spencer should be selected. From there you can click straight through to the Bank of England’s nomination form. You are permitted to nominate more than one visual artist.

    The Stanley Spencer Gallery in Cookham, Berks has the largest number of this great artist’s paintings on display anywhere in the world. Our current exhibition, The Creative Genius of Stanley Spencer, includes numerous Spencer works on loan from the City Art Galleries of Leeds and Aberdeen. A visit will be a moving and uplifting experience for visitors and their families or friends. But above all, we ask you to support Sir Stanley Spencer RA with your nomination on or before Sunday 19th July.

    Shez Courtenay-Smith
    Custodian and Member of the Management Team, Stanley Spencer Gallery, Cookham

    PS I know I won’t be in the prize draw for this response, but I thought you might like a comment on your chosen book anyway!

    1. Shez – thank you so much for such an insight into this fantastic artist – I will link through to the voting and the Stanley Spencer website on the Facebook page and see if I can link to your page as well. I will certainly add you to the prize draw – but I suspect you may have a copy already! Thanks very much again!

  3. My favourite 21st century author is probably Garth Nix who manages to effectively combine all sorts of religious believes and mythologies into his own brand of stories which are coherent and most importantly interesting 🙂

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