Views from Thornhill: Of Family, Farm, and Other Fancies

Dee Hardie, Author Atheneum Books $17.95 (274p) ISBN 978-0-689-11983-5
Hollyhocks, Lambs and Other Passions, Hardie's first book, attracted a wide readership, and so should this sequel, for it is equally warm, gently humorous and concerned with the joy and sadness of everyday life. The essays are reprinted from Hardie's newspaper and magazine columns, 1966 through 1987, about life with her husband and four children on a farm outside of Baltimore. (There was a hiatus: after the death of her oldest son in 1975, Hardie stopped writing for five years.) Topics range from the first entry when Hardie turns 40 and consoles herself with fringe benefits: ""Let the younger mothers decorate the school fair.'' During the following decades, Hardie entertains us with adventures, such as slipping away to a reunion with a college chum in a pricey New York restaurant: ``It makes you feel better, absolutely First Class.'' Still the best times are back in the 150-year-old house and grounds, fighting weeds, coping with recalcitrant teenagers and the bliss, at last, of becoming a grandmother. The book includes tempting recipes from Hardie Farm and is altogether charming except for one small slip: Contrary to Hardie's reference to miserly millionaire Hetty Green as childless, Green had a son who was a victim of her greed. (April)
Reviewed on: 04/25/1988
Release date: 05/01/1988
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