Chris Roberts (author)

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Chris Roberts is a librarian in South London, England, and sometime walking tour guide, as he is the proprietor of F and M Walking Tours in London. The stories that Roberts incorporated into his walking tours became the inspiration for his book Heavy Words Lightly Thrown: The Reason Behind the Rhyme.[1] which was first published in November 2003 with a limited print run of 2000 copies. What began as a self-published project in the UK soon attracted worldwide publicity, including coverage in USA Today. It also received some criticism for its speculative nature and lack of scholarship.[2] The book is now widely available as it was re-published by both Gotham Books and Granta.

Roberts has also written Cross River Traffic (2005) on the history of bridges over the Thames. One Eye Grey, a series of penny dreadful booklets for the 21st century is another self-published venture. These contain short stories based on London folklore. In June 2010 he published Football Voodoo — a study of black magic and superstition in the world of football.

Roberts lived in New York City for several years after earning a degree in history at Swansea University. He also lived in Berlin for a while before settling in London.


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  2. ^ J. Walsh, Heavy Words Lightly Thrown, by Chris Roberts, Nursery rhymes of the expected, 5 March 2004,, retrieved 12/04/09; M. Joseph, "Heavy Words Lightly Thrown: The Reason Behind the Rhyme (review)" Children's Literature Association Quarterly, 31 (2) (2006), pp. 207-209.

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