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Peter Benson - Author

About the Author

Born in 1956, Peter Benson was educated in Ramsgate, Canterbury and Exeter. His first novel, The Levels, won the Guardian Fiction Prize. This was followed by A Lesser Dependency, winner of the Encore award, The Other Occupant, which was awarded the Somerset Maugham Award, and three more novels: Odo's Hanging, Riptide and A Private Moon. He has also published short stories, screenplays and poetry, and his work has been adapted for TV and radio and translated into many languages. He lives in Exeter with his wife.

Featured books by Peter Benson

Isabel's Skin

Isabel's Skin

Author: Peter Benson Format: Paperback Release Date: 12/09/2013

David Morris lives the quiet life of a book-valuer for a London auction house, travelling every day by omnibus to his office in the Strand. When he is asked to make a trip to rural Somerset to value the library of the recently deceased Lord Buff-Orpington, the sense of trepidation he feels as he heads into the country is confirmed the moment he reaches his destination, the dark and impoverished village of Ashbrittle. These feelings turn to dread when he meets the enigmatic Professor Richard Hunt and catches a glimpse of a screaming woman he keeps prisoner in his house.

ebook of the month
Isabel's Skin

Isabel's Skin

Author: Peter Benson Format: Hardback Release Date: 30/08/2012

David Morris lives the quiet life of a book-valuer for a London auction house, travelling every day by omnibus to his office in the Strand. When he is asked to make a trip to rural Somerset to value the library of the recently deceased Lord Buff-Orpington, the sense of trepidation he feels as he heads into the country is confirmed the moment he reaches his destination, the dark and impoverished village of Ashbrittle. These feelings turn to dread when he meets the enigmatic Professor Richard Hunt and catches a glimpse of a screaming woman he keeps prisoner in his house.

ebook of the month

Other books by Peter Benson

The Stromness Dinner

The Stromness Dinner

Author: Peter Benson Format: Paperback / softback Release Date: 05/10/2020

Justice in Transactions

Justice in Transactions

Author: Peter Benson Format: Hardback Release Date: 31/01/2020

One of the most important contributions to the field of contract theory-if not the most important-in the past 25 years. -Stephen A. Smith, McGill University Can we account for contract law on a moral basis that is acceptable from the standpoint of liberal justice? To answer this question, Peter Benson develops a theory of contract that is completely independent of-and arguably superior to-long-dominant views, which take contract law to be justified on the basis of economics or promissory morality. Through a detailed analysis of contract principles and doctrines, Benson brings out the specific normative conception underpinning the whole of contract law. Contract, he argues, is best explained as a transfer of rights, which is complete at the moment of agreement and is governed by a definite conception of justice-justice in transactions. Benson's analysis provides what John Rawls called a public basis of justification, which is as essential to the liberal legitimacy of contract as to any other form of coercive law. The argument of Justice in Transactions is expressly complementary to Rawls's, presenting an original justification designed specifically for transactions, as distinguished from the background institutions to which Rawls's own theory applies. The result is a field-defining work offering a comprehensive theory of contract law. Benson shows that contract law is both justified in its own right and fully congruent with other domains-moral, economic, and political-of liberal society.

Woodland Whittling

Woodland Whittling

Author: Peter Benson Format: Hardback Release Date: 01/08/2019

When the stresses of modern life get too much, what could be better than gathering a few simple tools, heading into the woods and literally whittling away a few hours? The gentle art of whittling is a relaxing and absorbing hobby that can be enjoyed almost anywhere from round the campfire to in a cozy armchair at home. All you need is a good pocket knife, a piece of wood and your imagination. Projects can range from the delightfully simple to impressively intricate--it's up to you. Woodland Whittling guides you through the basics explaining what equipment you need, how to hold the knife, and what timber to use. The projects are then all described in detail with clear step-by-step photographs. Projects include: letter opener, thumb stick, ring tree and egg cup.

The South in Winter

The South in Winter

Author: Peter Benson Format: Paperback / softback Release Date: 21/04/2017

Matthew Baxter was almost there. Almost a writer, almost a lover, almost a traveller. He wrote for the Tread Lightly range of travel guides, he loved his boss and he was about to catch a plane to the south. His job was to give an out-of-season slant to the Italian guide, and he was ready. Almost. For everything wasn't exactly as it should have been. In fact, nothing was exactly as it should have been. Especially Matthew Baxter. Peter Benson's new novel is a tour of southern Italy, and aims to prove that although some people say Never go back , some people don't know what they're talking about.

Privatization and the New Medical Pluralism

Privatization and the New Medical Pluralism

Author: Peter Benson, Anita Chary Format: Hardback Release Date: 15/09/2015

Privatization and the New Medical Pluralism is the first collection of its kind to explore the contemporary terrain of healthcare in Guatemala through reflective ethnography. This volume offers a nuanced portrait of the effects of healthcare privatization for indigenous Maya people, who have historically endured numerous disparities in health and healthcare access. The collection provides an updated understanding of medical pluralism, which concerns not only the tensions and exchanges between ethnomedicine and biomedicine that have historically shaped Maya people's experiences of health, but also the multiple competing biomedical institutions that have emerged in a highly privatized, market-driven environment of care. The contributors examine the macro-structural and micro-level implications of the proliferation of non-governmental organizations, private fee-for-service clinics, and new pharmaceuticals against the backdrop of a deteriorating public health system. In this environment, health seekers encounter new challenges and opportunities, relationships between the public, private, and civil sectors transform, and new forms of inequality in access to healthcare abound. This volume connects these themes to critical studies of global and public health, exposing the strictures and apertures of healthcare privatization for marginalized populations in Guatemala.

The Levels

The Levels

Author: Peter Benson Format: Paperback / softback Release Date: 12/04/2012

Drove House has always loomed large over village life. Boarded-up for years, it is reputed to be brimming with ghosts, and is shunned by the locals - all except Billy, for whom it has been the site of childhood dens and secret adolescent adventures. When the captivating Muriel moves in with her bohemian mother, they sweep out the ghosts and breathe new life into both the house and Billy's quiet rural existence. After an idyllic summer, though, Muriel returns to her life in London, and the newly empty Drove House becomes the backdrop for Billy's struggle to reconcile the vanishing agricultural lifestyle he has inherited with the glimpses of a baffling new way of life Muriel seemed to offer. Charting the conflict between these two competing worlds, Peter Benson's award-winning first novel is at once a lyrical portrait of the landscape of the Somerset Levels and a touching evocation of first love.

Tobacco Capitalism

Tobacco Capitalism

Author: Peter Benson Format: Paperback / softback Release Date: 18/11/2011

Tobacco Capitalism tells the story of the people who live and work on U.S. tobacco farms at a time when the global tobacco industry is undergoing profound changes. Against the backdrop of the antitobacco movement, the globalization and industrialization of agriculture, and intense debates over immigration, Peter Benson draws on years of field research to examine the moral and financial struggles of growers, the difficult conditions that affect Mexican migrant workers, and the complex politics of citizenship and economic decline in communities dependent on this most harmful commodity. Benson tracks the development of tobacco farming since the plantation slavery period and the formation of a powerful tobacco industry presence in North Carolina. In recent decades, tobacco companies that sent farms into crisis by aggressively switching to cheaper foreign leaf have coached growers to blame the state, public health, and aggrieved racial minorities for financial hardship and feelings of vilification. Economic globalization has exacerbated social and racial tensions in North Carolina, but the corporations that benefit have rarely been considered a key cause of harm and instability, and have now adopted social-responsibility platforms to elide liability for smoking disease. Parsing the nuances of history, power, and politics in rural America, Benson explores the cultural and ethical ambiguities of tobacco farming and offers concrete recommendations for the tobacco-control movement in the United States and worldwide.

Battling Siki

Battling Siki

Author: Peter Benson Format: Paperback / softback Release Date: 15/09/2008

This is the first biography of the controversial and misunderstood African boxer, now in paper. Battling Siki (1887-1925) was once one of the four or five most recognizable black men in the world and was written about by a host of great writers, including George Bernard Shaw, Ring Lardner, Damon Runyon, Janet Flanner, and Ernest Hemingway. Peter Benson's lively biography of the first African to win a world championship in boxing delves into the complex world of sports, race, colonialism, and the cult of personality in the early twentieth century.

The Theory of Contract Law

The Theory of Contract Law

Author: Peter Benson Format: Paperback / softback Release Date: 07/09/2007

Although the law of contract is largely settled, there appears to be no widely-accepted comprehensive theory of its main principles and doctrines or of its normative basis. Contract law theory raises issues concerning the relation between law and morality, the role and the importance of rights, the connection between justice and economics, and the distinction between private and public law. This collection of six full-length essays, written by some of the most eminent scholars in the field, explores the general theory of contract law from a variety of theoretical perspectives. The volume addresses a wide range of issues, both methodological and substantive, in the theory and practice of contract law. While the essays build upon past theoretical contributions, they also attempt to take contract theory further and suggest promising ways to develop theory of contract law.

Battling Siki

Battling Siki

Author: Peter Benson Format: Hardback Release Date: 15/05/2006

Battling Siki (1887-1925) was once one of the four or five most recognizable black men in the world, and was written about in detail by such figures as Ring Lardner and his son John, Damon Runyon, and Westbrook Pegler...On the evening of December 15, 1925, at the age of twenty-eight, he was shot and killed in Hell's Kitchen in what some claimed was a gangland execution.