After a long winter of red noses and wet mittens, summer is a welcome time for Miss Read and her downland village friends. SUMMER AT FAIRACRE charmingly recounts this bright, bustling season and the problems and possibilities that unfold against the background of roses, skylarks, and bees. Joseph Coggs finds a temporary home in the schoolhouse while his mother is in the hospital. Miss Read's friend Amy mysteriously disappears. Perhaps most difficult of all, Mrs. Pringle, the grumpy school cleaner, is unable to work because the pain in her bad leg flares up. Still, the sounds of children playing and the fragrance of summertime flowers fill the air, as Miss Read shepherds her students and friends through the warm season.
Miss Read (1913-2012) was the pseudonym of Mrs. Dora Saint, a former schoolteacher beloved for her novels of English rural life, especially those set in the fictional villages of Thrush Green and Fairacre. The first of these, Village School, was published in 1955, and Miss Read continued to write until her retirement in 1996. In the 1998, she was awarded an MBE, or Member of the Order of the British Empire, for her services to literature.
"If you've ever enjoyed a visit to Mitford, you'll relish a visit to Fairacre." -- Jan Karon —