In Cider with Rosie, Laurie Lee paints a very vivid picture of what his life was like growing up as a child in a quaint Cotswolds village. He transports the reader back to the days before the rise of the motorcar and advanced technology – the days when the world only extended as far as as the eye could see. With his words Laurie Lee perfectly evokes the sights and smells of his childhood. He artfully describes what the countryside and family life look like through the eyes of a young child.
I read Cider with Rosie just after the summer. I happen to come across a copy and I had already seen a dramatisation of the book on television, so I decided to read it. It is one of the more modern classics and I hadn’t read many of them. I really enjoyed it. I found it surprising that a novel just about the day-to-day life of a young boy in a quiet village in the English countryside could be so captivating. I couldn’t stop reading it. The narrative was so simple and yet recalled the moments, places and people of his life vividly. His words, his descriptions, bring to life those scenes to the extent where you can smell the mud and grass, you can see the bright blue sky and you can feel his amazement when discovering girls.
It is also an interesting read because it is set in a world that to many of us seems so far away. Laurie Lee and his family lived their life in this one small village in the Cotswolds. Cars were nearly a figment of people’s imagination, milkmen were still around, the local church was at the heart of the village community, there was no electricity and colds could be lethal. All that seems so far away now. In the last pages of the book, Laurie Lee explains how the world slowly started to change, how the horizon began to broaden as he became an adult and his life took a new direction.