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Publisher's Summary

Mrs. Pringle, the lugubrious school cleaner, has always been a favorite character in the Fairacre series. Here, through the eyes and anecdotes of the schoolmistress Miss Read, and others, we trace Maud Pringle's life. They include childhood visits to the village from her Caxley home, through her working days before her marriage to Fred Pringle, and on to her long association with Fairacre School. We meet again many old friends as they cross Mrs. Pringle's path: Mr. Willet the caretaker, Mr. Partridge the vicar, Miss Clare, and Miss Read's friend Amy. And their adventures make another enchanting excursion to Fairacre that will delight Miss Read's devoted followers.
©1989 Mrs. D. J. Saint. All rights reserved. (P)2011 AudioGO
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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful
5 out of 5 stars
By Kathleen McKinney on 10-25-11

Fairacre-the perfect English village-enjoy!

This is the first of the Fairacre books written by Miss Read available on Audible; it's about a peaceful English village & it's inhabitants. I couldn't recommend this series & this book more. It's set in the early 1950s & is guaranteed to make you forget your troubles for a few hours. Gwen Watford is a wonderful narrator too. The title character is an irascible cleaner for the Village School, where Miss Read, who tells the story, teaches. I only hope that more audio books in this series are forthcoming. I will be first in line to purchase them. Miss Read also wrote books set in another village nearby, Thrush Green; Audible has 5 of them available. I just prefer the characters in Fairacre. This book is like a breath of fresh air!

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9 of 10 people found this review helpful

5 out of 5 stars
By Gentle Reader Jill on 01-20-12


Would you consider the audio edition of Mrs. Pringle of Fairacre to be better than the print version?

Hooray! Audible is offering the first book about life in the small English village of Fairacre.

Miss Read's Fairacre and Thrush Green books are delightful. Reading them is fun, but listening to Gwen Watford's beautifully-nuanced readings is even better.

For a while it was hard to get hold of even the hard-copy books in the United States; now many are back in print, and even more are available as eBooks. But they're best as audiobooks!

These are peaceful, relaxing books. Don't expect a white-knuckle roller-coaster ride. The stories involve problems and tensions, but action is small-scale, in situations that are plausible, amusing, and touching.

The characters vividly drawn. Even those that are not downright eccentric are satisfyingly quirky--and they seem like entertaining versions of people we know. And the sense of community may be the best part of these books. People have patience with each other. They recognize each other's foibles, but don't feel compelled to try to fix their friends.

Listening to these books (and Mrs. Pringle of Fairacre is one of the best) means seeing the world from a very different point of view. We feel akin to Miss Read's characters, but their attitudes, assumptions, and pace of life are half-a-world and at least half-a-century away from ours.

That's part of the fascination. The books actually become more fun each year, as their world becomes more distant and quaint. I hope that eventually (and the sooner the better) Audible offers the Gwen Watson recordings of all Miss Read's books.

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8 of 9 people found this review helpful

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