Friday 4 May 2018

The H E Bates Collection : Celebrating 60 Perfick Years of the Larkins @PenguinUKBooks @Deaco89 @BBettesworth_ #Win #Giveaway #Competition


Celebrating 60 ‘perfick’ years of the Larkins 

 Published by Penguin, Thursday 3rd May 2018, Paperback, £8.99 

To celebrate 60 years since The Darling Buds of May was first published, Penguin have given the complete Larkin series a beautiful new look that invokes that idealistic notion of an English country life.

Partnering with the hugely popular British artist, Becky Bettesworth, Penguin have blended vibrant and evocative colours with her pastoral inspiration to create the brand new artwork for the five Larkin family titles.

H.E.Bates is one of Britain’s most respected writers, and the raucous and loveable Larkin family have remained ever popular with the novels collectively selling almost a million copies in paperback to date.

The Darling Buds of May: The Larkins return home from an outing one May evening to discover a
visitor: Cedric Charlton, Her Majesty’s inspector of taxes. Mr Charlton is visiting to find out why junk-dealer Pop hasn’t paid his taxes, but nothing is that simple at the Larkins’ and before long the family have introduced the uncomplaining inspector to the delights of country living.

A Breath of French Air: It’s the end of a rainy English August and the Larkins decide to abondon the hostile elements of the English countryside for the balmy and sunny spot across the channel. However, France proves less than welcoming to the English family. The tea’s weak, the furniture breakable and when the hotel manager learns that Ma and Pop are unmarried the trouble really begins.

When The Green Woods Laugh: Pop Larkin manages to sell a nearby crumbling, tumbling country home to city dwellers Mr and Mrs Jerebohm for a pretty bundle of notes. Now he can build his daughter the pool she’s long been nagging him for. But the Jerebohm’s aren’t quite so accepting of country ways and it’s not long before their fraught relationship comes to a head, disturbing everyone’s idea of an idyllic country life.

Oh! To Be in England: With the delivery of a letter announcing the imminent arrival of Madame DuPont, Ma and Pop start planning little Oscar’s and Blenheim’s christenings. In fact, once Mr Candy – who will be officiating – learns that Ma and Pop have neglected to baptise any of the Larkin brood the entire family seems set for a dunking!

A Little of What You Fancy: After a mild heart attack – caused by rather too much of what you fancy – Pop Larkin finds himself off the booze, off the good food and off the good life generally, much to his own and everyone else’s horror and upset.

I have a complete set of the five paperbacks to give away to one reader.
Entry is simple, just fill out the competition widget below
The giveaway will stay open for seven days. UK ENTRIES ONLY
Good Luck!

H E BATES Larkin Paperbacks

H.E. Bates was born in 1905 in Northamptonshire. 
He worked as a journalist and clerk on a local newspaper before publishing his first book, The Two Sisters, when he was twenty. 
In the next fifteen years he acquired a distinguished reputation for his stories about English country life. 
During the Second World War he was a Squadron Leader in the R.A.F. 
The Darling Buds of May (1958), the first of the popular Larkin family novels, was followed by A Breath of French Air (1959), When the Green Woods Laugh (1960), Oh! To Be in England (1963) and A Little of What You Fancy (1970). 
His works have been translated into sixteen languages. 
H. E. Bates was awarded the C.B.E. in 1973 and died in January 1974.

Becky Bettesworth’s work draws inspiration from the classic railway posters of the 1930s. 
Becky draws her inspiration from a time before the current obsession with the latest gadgets and gizmos, her vintage seaside scenes are modern and fresh, illustrating a slower pace of life without the fuss and rush of the modern world. 

Find out more at
Find her on Facebook
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Follow her on Twitter @BBettesworth_

Praise for H.E. Bates 
‘The Larkins live – these novels please us by escaping definition’ – Guardian 
‘A gently anarchic wish-fullfilling daydream’ – Times 
‘A wistful daydream about innocence and happiness’ – Spectator 
‘As funny as Evelyn Waughn and as enchanting as Laurie Lee’s Cider with Rosie’ – Herald 
‘A superb and timeless comedy’ – Scotsman 
‘A pulsing comedy of country manners. Just about Perfick’ – Time 
‘A racey, sexy, rollicking tale’ – New York Times


  1. Oh how lovely - the only one I've read is The Darling Buds of May (at about the same time as 99% of the British population, I expect - when the TV series was first broadcast) and would love to read the rest. I love the cover illustrations, so atmospheric and perfect for the books.

  2. I adored these books as a child! The new covers are stunning! What a great giveaway, fingers and toes crossed :-)

  3. Thanks for the chance - I absolutely love the Darling Buds of May. I have the series on DVD and it's such a feel good series. I wrote to David Jason. He rarely sends out real autographs but I sent a picture of him as Pop Larkin' and he signed it for me. I think most people write to him about Only Fools and Horses. :-)

  4. Wow- thanks for the opportunity Anne- such a gorgeous giveaway! This series was my absolute favourite as a teenager! xx