Lisa Woollett's family have found value in what is thrown away for generations - her great-grandfather was a scavenger and her grandfather was a dustman, while she herself has been a beachcomber all her life, and in recent years has taken photographs of her beach and river finds. She is the author of two award-winning photography books about the sea, and Rag and Bone won a Royal Society of Literature Giles St Aubyn Award for Non-Fiction. She has lived in Cornwall with her family since 2004, in a house shared with buckets and boxes of shore finds.
Absorbing . . . Woollett has a gift for bringing to life the strange borderlands of the foreshore - ObserverLisa Woollett's beautifully descriptive language intertwines the stories of the river's history with that of her family, like a muddy journey through time. But it's so much more than that - in recording the waste and the lives we've left behind she's given us a chance to change our ways and possibly head towards a cleaner futureRag and Bone digs deep into the mud of the Thames estuary, and comes up with something compelling and urgent - history told through rubbish. Lisa Woollett is a genuine mudlark, alert and closely attuned to the ways of the intertidal zone. A fascinating bookMudlark and beachcomber Lisa Woollett journeys into her family's past, our collective history and our possible futures. Subtle, dark and funny, with flashes of beauty and wonder, Rag and Bone is a compelling meditation on the consumer culture and its consequencesLisa Woollett spins narrative gold out of literal dross in this gorgeous story of our waterways that lulls you like a punt on the Cam before making you seasick at the damage we've wrought on the oceans - Evening Standard, Books to Read This SummerTracing the remote and recent past - her own, and ours - through watery debris, Lisa Woollett conjures up, in poetic prose and brilliant stories, the spin cycle of history. In Rag and Bone, she elegantly picks her way through the trash, to reveal something gloriously and richly strange: a portrait of what we were and what we might becomeA delicious confection of a book, blending history and memoir with thoughts and close observation. I so enjoyed watching shadows of the past flit across Lisa Woollett's watery pages. It is a timely book, too, when, as Woollett writes, "our waste threatens to overwhelm us"[A] beguiling blend of memoir, nature writing and social history - The Bookseller, Editor's Choice