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Richard Adams - book author

Adams was born in Newbury, Berkshire. From 1933 until 1938 he was educated at Bradfield College. In 1938 he went up to Worcester College, Oxford to read Modern History. On 3 September 1939 Neville Chamberlain announced that the United Kingdom was at war with Germany. In 1940 Adams joined the British Army, in which he served until 1946. He received a class B discharge enabling him to return to Worcester to continue his studies for a further two years (1946-48). He took the degree of Bachelor of Arts in 1948 and of Master of Arts in 1953.[2]

He was a senior civil servant who worked as an Assistant Secretary for the Department of Agriculture, later part of the Department of the Environment, from 1948 to 1974. Since 1974, following publication of his second novel, Shardik, he has been a full-time author.

He originally began telling the story of Watership Down to his two daughters, Juliet and Rosamund, and they insisted he publish it as a book. It took two years to write and was rejected by thirteen publishers. When Watership Down was finally published, it sold over a million copies in record time in both the United Kingdom and the United States. Watership Down has become a modern classic and won both the Carnegie Medal and the Guardian Children's Fiction Prize in 1972. To date, Adams' best-known work has sold over 50 million copies world-wide, earning him more than all his other books put together.

As of 1982, he was President of the RSPCA.

He also contested the 1983 general election, standing as an Independent Conservative in the Spelthorne constituency on a platform of opposition to fox hunting.

Richard Adams is the author of books: Watership Down (Watership Down, #1), Tales from Watership Down (Watership Down, #2), The Plague Dogs, Shardik (Beklan Empire #1), Maia (Beklan Empire #2), The Girl in a Swing, Traveller, The Iron Wolf and Other Stories, The Tyger Voyage, The Ship's Cat

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Author Books

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Title
Description
01
Librarian's note: See alternate cover edition of ISBN13 9780380395866 here.

Set in England's Downs, a once idyllic rural landscape, this stirring tale of adventure, courage and survival follows a band of very special creatures on their flight from the intrusion of man and the certain destruction of their home. Led by a stouthearted pair of friends, they journey forth from their native Sandleford Warren through the harrowing trials posed by predators and adversaries, to a mysterious promised land and a more perfect society.
02
Watership Down was one of this century's best-loved works of imaginative literature. Now Richard Adams returns, to tell us what happened to the rabbits after their defeat of General Woundwort.

Tales From Watership Down begins with some of the great folk stories well known to all rabbits. Then we listen in as Dandelion, the rabbits' master storyteller, relates the thrilling adventures experienced by El-ahrairah, the mythical rabbit hero, and his stalwart, Rabscuttle, during the long journey home after their terrible encounter with the Black Rabbit of Inlé (as narrated in Watership Down). Finally, in the principal part of the book, we are told eight enchanting stories about the rabbits of the Down - Hazel, Fiver, Bigwig, and their companions - including the impact on the warren of the obsessive doe Flyairth, and the appointment of Hyzenthlay as a female Chief Rabbit and partner to Hazel.

All listeners - the millions who remember Watership Down with the deepest affection, and also those for whom this volume will be their first encounter with the rabbits - will find these nineteen tales utterly compelling, the fruit of Richard Adams spellbinding narrative power and ability to conjure up a world that is at the same time both real and unreal.
03
Richard Adams, the author of Watership Down, creates a lyrical and engrossing tale, a remarkable journey into the hearts and minds of two canine heroes, Snitter and Rowf.

After being horribly mistreated at a government animal research facility, Snitter and Rowf escape into the isolation, and terror, of the wilderness. Aided only by a fox they call ''the Tod,'' the two dogs must struggle to survive in their new environment. When the starving dogs attack some sheep, they are labeled ferocious man-eating monsters, setting off a great dog hunt that is later intensified by the fear that the dogs could be carriers of the bubonic plague.
04
Shardik is a fantasy of tragic character, centered on the long-awaited reincarnation of the gigantic bear Shardik and his appearance among the half-barbaric Ortelgan people. Mighty, ferocious, and unpredictable, Shardik changes the life of every person in the story. His advent commences a momentous chain of events. Kelderek the hunter, who loves and trusts the great bear, is swept on by destiny to become first devotee and then prophet, then victorious soldier, then ruler of an empire and priest-king of Lord Shardik only to discover ever-deeper layers of meaning implicit in his passionate belief in the bear's divinity.
05
Maia is a fifteen-year-old peasant beauty growing up in poverty beside Lake Serrelind. Seduced by her stepfather and betrayed by her jealous mother, Maia finds herself in the hands of slave-traders to be sold as a concubine. She attracts the attention of General Kembri who uses her to obtain information from her admirers and her adventures uncover a plot for civil war. Proclaimed as a heroine, she finds that one sinister result of fame is to have enemies in high places and Maia has to struggle for survival through treachery, cruelty, lost love and a final flight through a wild empire to escape a crumbling regime.
06
A shy young man meets a beautiful woman in the company of a young girl. He finds himself swept off of his feet and married to her, bringing her with him to live in his family home. She is his erotic dream come true; she does everything she can to bind him to her and join him in his comfortable life.

Soon, however, odd things begin to happen. Things in the house are strangely damp with what looks like seawater, bodies appear under the water that aren't really there. It all winds up to a horrifying conclusion.
07
Examines the events of the Civil War through the eyes of General Robert E. Lee's closest companion and devoted horse, Traveller.
08
In this volume, Richard Adams has collected together nineteen enchanting folk-tales from almost as many parts of the world - from Europe to China and from Polynesia to the Arctic Circle. Each has a special magic, an aura that is sometimes beautiful and fascinating, sombre and frightening, or exciting and colourful. But what unites all these stories is the essential quality of folk-lore, something that transcends the boundaries of nations, of custom and time, that gives them their permanence and universality of appeal. "Authors need folk-tales," Richard Adams says, "in the same way as composers need folk-song. They're the headspring of the narrator's art, where the story stands forth at its simple, irreducible best. They don't date, any more than dreams, for they are the collective dreams of humanity." In order to preserve as far as possible the immediacy and directness of authentic folk story-telling, each of the nineteen tales is presented as being told by an imagined narrator to one or more hearers at a particular time and place, sometimes past, sometimes present. However, the reader is never told the identity either of the teller or his hearers, but is left free to infer both them and the occasion solely from the narrator's own words. This original technique adds a novel dash of piquancy to this fine collection.
09
A gentleman tyger and his son set sail from Victorian England into the timeless unknown. Together they roam across the seas, through jungles, past ice-covered mountains and erupting volcanoes and many more unexpected hazards along the way.
10
The ship's cat is introduced as a patriotic swashbuckling crew member of the English privateer Alcestis. After attacking a lone Spanish ship, the Alcestis is defeated by Spanish reinforcements and its crew taken as captives to the Panamanian port of Chagres.

The ship's cat is initially imprisoned, but the gaoler's daughter takes pity on him and has him released to serve in the gaoler's kitchen. After the gaoler and his companions become drunk celebrating Saint Philip's Day, the ship's cat steals the keys to the gaol and releases his shipmates.

Together, they steal a ship from the harbor and sail for home, pursued by their erstwhile captors. Their pursuers are frightened off by the sudden appearance of Sir Francis Drake (outward bound on his global circumnavigation of 1577).

After Drake departs, the ship's cat reveals that he has discovered a hoard of treasure in the ship's hold. The crew sail home to England, where they are greeted as heroes and the cat is knighted by Queen Elizabeth I.