Admirers of The Spanish Temper, Marching Spain and his wonderfully evocative books on London, Dublin and New York will need no reminding that V.S. Pritchett is one of the very great travel writers of our time, possessed of an astonishingly accurate eye and a marvellous ability to conjure up the essence of a place, and of the people who live there. Written for the most part in the 1950s and 1960s, the essays brought together in At Home and Abroad cover South and North America, Spain, Ireland, Portugal, London, Greece, the Pyrenees, Germany, the English countryside and, above all, the Mediterranean: published in book form in the year of Sir Victor's ninetieth birthday, they are a delight in themselves and a timely reminder of - or introduction to - this most subtle and perceptive of writers.
Victor Sawdon Pritchett (1900-1997) was born over a toyshop in 1900 and, much to his everlasting distaste, was named after Queen Victoria. A writer and critic, his is widely reputed to be one of the best short story writers of all time, with the rare ability to capture the extraordinary strangeness of everyday life.