“We can ask and ask but we can’t have again what once seemed ours forever–the way things looked, that church alone in the fields…” reflects narrator Birkin at the end of this spare, poetic novel. One summer in the country, uncovering a work of art on a chapel wall and getting to know the villagers, gradually changes the veteran Birkin, for the better. But with the arrival of fall, he must ponder what lasts, and what doesn’t.
J. L. Carr grew up in a Wesleyan Methodist Family, the son of a stationmaster. Many incidents recounted in “A Month in the Country” are auobiographical.