A Delicate Wildness

The Life and Loves of David Thomson 1914-1988

By: Julian Vignoles

Rated 4.50 out of 5 based on 2 customer ratings
(2 customer reviews)


“complex and elusive” -Irish Examiner

David Thompson was a Scottish writer, folklorist and radio producer, who became an honorary Irishman. His life took a defining turn when as a student of history at Oxford, he came to County Roscommon in the early 1930’s as tutor to an Anglo-Irish family, the Kirkwoods. He fell in love with his charge, Phoebe, the daughter of the house, and returned to London in 1939, becoming a radio producer with the BBC, where he spent the remainder of his working days.

David Thomson was affecting, febrile and uniquely talented. His life was dominated by his love of women and locale – Ireland, Scotland, London – sensuous worlds apprehended through the artistry of his written legacy. With over fifty unseen photographs, this biography speaks to the writer’s ‘delicate wildness’ (Seamus Heaney’s phrase) and to the contradictions and passions of a singular man.

Also available as an ebook

2 reviews for A Delicate Wildness

  1. Rated 5 out of 5

    Lilliput Press

    For anyone interested in the wisdom and elegant writing of David Thomson, this book is a must. There is no other substantial account of his life and work. I found it enthralling, though I have only read two of his books. One of those was ‘Woodbrook’, and Vignoles goes into fascinating detail on this. MOONCHILD

  2. Rated 4 out of 5

    Lilliput Press

    The book provides a well-researched insight into the life of David Thomson, the author of ‘Woodbrook’, although some of the ground
    is covered in Thomson’s ‘Nairn in Darkness and Light’. I ordered ‘A Delicate Wildness’ primarily to gain a better insight into the fate of the Jamieson family and in particular, that of Phoebe – and this it provided. The book and binding is well done, except that, with the availability of Photoshop and similar pic-processing programs, the grayness of the old pictures could have been removed and the photographs restored or even ‘enhanced’. WILLIAM

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Weight 0.5 kg