About this book
Paperback edition of this remarkable history. While on an errand to a deserted house in Central France, the author discovered a cache of letters, in different hands, but all written to the same woman, Celestine Chaumette. Born in 1844, the daughter of an inn-keeper, her history is the history of the village through the decades. The author has used both passed down memories, archives and the works of Balzac and George Sand, to help piece together the shared experience of the era.
One summer evening in central France, Gillian Tindall went on an errand into a deserted house. There she discovered a cache of letters in various hands, all written to the same woman. In piecing together the life of this extraordinary person, the author rediscovered a vanished village world.