Sunday, March 28, 2010

Been Reading......

                    A very mixed selection indeed, but all thoroughly enjoyable in very different ways :-)

I love trains. Any type of trains. To travel on at train is a delight for me and for my children, for whom it is a rare treat. This is a history, both social and engineering, of train travel in the UK, and I know I am an "anorak", but I liked it !

Elder Macarius - what can I say ? I have only two of the volumes of the Optina saints, Sts Macarius and Barsanuphius, and they are both always balm to my soul.

The Morville Hours is a gardening book with a difference. The only illustration is on the front cover, in the style of an illuminated manuscript, yet it is all about a couple restoring a medieval garden. It is an amazing cornucopia of information about plants, herbs, history, religion - especially the  Daily Office, Latin as applying to the Daily Office and to botanical terms, natural history, folklore, the social and economic history of the region and the task of restoring and living in an ancient house with a lot of history. I absolutely adored this book and will be buying a copy for myself, as soon as possible.

Everyone knows the rough story outline of the Great War, World War One. But what was it like to live  through it in Britain ? How did their lives change ? What news did they get ?

Georgina Lee was faced with a heartbreaking choice - to keep her infant son in the uncertain and risky world of London, where her husband's job was, or to send him to her parents and family in the comparative safety of  rural Wales.

In the end, she did both, spending much time commuting, and she kept a vivid diary, complete with newspaper cuttings, so that as her son grew up, he would be able to know why she did what she did, and what her life was like. She was an avid war worker,  helping with fundraising, nursing and the work aiding the Belgian refugees who flooded into London.
It is a truly amazing and fascinating insight into her daily life as a well-off middle-aged woman (she was 43 when her only child was born) who desperately wanted to help the war effort in any way possible whilst also doing her duty to her family. Well worth a read if you cna get hold of a copy.
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1 comment:

Mimi said...

Ooooh, the Moorland book sounds really lovely, nad so does the last one, definitely up my alley.

Although, yikes! 43 and a new mom! Wow! She's got fortitude.