By: Adam Horovitz
This is not a book about Laurie Lee, still less a biography. It is about the spirit of the man and the spirit of a place. A Thousand Laurie Lees is a poetic reassessment of the Slad Valley, a memoir from a different age rooted in the same idyllic landscape that inspired Cider with Rosie. A year after Lee’s death in 1997, a handful of locals dressed up as him for an epic, drunken cycle ride right through the heart of Laurie Lee country. They called it The Night of a Thousand Laurie Lees and stopped off at all the pubs on the way, signing books, singing and carousing. Taking this as a starting point, poet Adam Horovitz reaches back through myth, memory and literature to explore Laurie Lee’s impact on the Slad Valley and its people. Lyrically evoking his own childhood there sixty years after Lee, he explores the connections between family, the valley and learning to write, and examines what has changed since Lee’s day and what remains the same.