Wednesday, November 4, 2020

Aspirational book cover: "A Million and More Strides"

  • Title: A Million and More Strides
  • Author: E. Hector Kyme (who was mentioned in passing in this recent post)
  • Jacket photograph: "Self photograph of the author walking across Beeley Moors, Derbyshire (taken using a 30ft cable release)"
  • Dust jacket blurb: "When Hector Kyme decided to walk the length of Britain he chose to go north-west to south-east — Durness to Dover, which he considered a more beautiful and interesting route — as well as less crowded — than the commoner John O'Groats to Lands End. He carried all his belongings, including two cameras, in a rucksack and in this book he describes the wonder and excitement he experienced from the wild beauty of the north to the architectural and historic treasures of the south. Whenever possible Kyme kept to country lanes or minor roads. Sometimes he deviated to see a notable scene or a village of notable charm, but everywhere — and these were among the more memorable of his experiences — he met and made friends with people"
  • Relevant Elton John song/Bernie Taupin lyric: 
"I hope the day will be a lighter highway
For friends are found on every road
Can you ever think of any better way
For the lost and weary travelers to go
Making friends for the world to see
Let the people know you got what you need"
  • Publisher: Robert Hale, London
  • Original price: £3.50
  • Year: 1975
  • Pages: 207
  • Format: Hardcover 
  • First sentence: With one elbow resting on the roof of his superb car, affording support while divesting himself of his fishing waders, an angler answered my "How do you do?" with "Good day, where are you going?"
  • Last sentence: Incidentally, do join me on my next journey.
  • Random sentence from the middle: Soon, I was so alone that cows and sheep wandered about the road, quite unconcerned about me.
  • Random passage from the middle: Next followed the most hauntingly beautiful county of this realm with the road undulating and swaying, following the contours of the land. It seems as if the monotonous, dull, routine jobs of industry were more than a million miles away, and that the clangs and clatters of hammers were only to be found in Vulcan's forge and that all mythological. 
  • What is Vulcan's forge? It could refer to this by Diego Velázquez or, more likely perhaps, this.
  • Online ratings or reviews of this book: None. 
  • Other books of note: Also on the dust jacket, we learn that this is the first book that Kyme has written, but he provided photographs for two others — Portrait of the Pennines and Peakland Days, both by his friend Roger Redfern. ... Meanwhile, these two pastoral books are promoted on the back cover: More Country Talk by J.H.B. Peel and Four Seasons in Three Counties by Edward Storey.
Interior photo by author

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