Books I've loved; Fab-ruary 7

I'm glad this post asked for books. Books I've loved.

There are so many books I have read and, yes, so many books I've loved. Books that kept me company when I was a lonely teenager in school, books that fed me romance or horror or all sorts of emotions that I wasn't experiencing at the time. Books that stopped me and made me think about my life. Books that taught me about people and places, about how to live well and fully, to suck the marrow out of life. And my how to books. I love a good how to book.

But you have places to go and people to see, so I should get on with it. I decided to choose the books that I loved and re read; not all of them, but the best and dearest. These are probably the ones I would grab in a fire.

Jo of The Chalet School. by Elinor M Brent Dyer

I read this when I was about 10. How I wished to go to a school like the chalet school! They lived in Austria (and then Anglesey) and they had goo dlessons like French with a French mistress, they played lacrosse and hockey, they made doll's houses. they used ink pens. Oh, how I wanted to go. And years later I went to Austria and was delighted to finally have cafe und kuchen, and say Gruss Gott to the people I met.

The Harvester by Gene Stratton Porter.

My Mum had this book when she was a young teenager and passed it on to me when I was about 14. I built my ideal man on the model of David. It's like Thoreau's principles written into a romance, the idea of a simple life, a life spent working in the woods and harvesting the herbs for medicine. I love reading it just for the descriptions of the house that David builds.

Simple Abundance by Sarah Ban Breathnach

The book that got me living in my life just as it is, and seeing the beautiful in the ordinary.  I don't care if Sarah Ban Breathnach went bust, or found herself living the opposite of her dream life, this is a real case of look at the book, not the writer. I found it just as I became a mother and it helped me work towards keeping a sense of me and my role as the homemaker, not house keeper. And I wonder sometimes if my life as a blogger is my way of writing the daily meditations, but with an audience, not just for myself.

Jane Eyre by Charlotte Bronte

My favourite classic. Is she a downtrodden heroine or a real independent woman? I don't know, but I do know that I always preferred it to the fire of Wuthering Heights or the endless descriptions of Hardy or the universe of the grotesque that is Dickens. I have it on audible now and it has been my bedtime story of choice this week. Love it still! And my copy was my Grandmother's, bought for her by my Grandfather who died in the Second World War. It's special.


  1. I've never heard of The Harvester but it sounds wonderful. I really need to read more books - I used to gobble them up as a child and loved escaping into different worlds - I just seem to have got out of the habit. I look forward to finding some inspiration over here! Jane x

  2. Oh, what a wonderful selection of books (only one of which I've read). Off to explore them a little further (and most probably add to my 'To read' Pinterest board). The Harvester sounds just my sort of book, as does Simple Abundance (thank you for the recommendation). And how did I forget to mention Jane Eyre in my own post??!! (my own favourite English classic - I adore it) very wonderful that you have your Grandmothers copy (what a treasure). Love your post (thank you!)...

  3. I love the look of Jo of the Chalet School - looks like an alpine version of one of Enid Blyton's Malory Towers books.

  4. Oh, how I loved the Chalet School series as a child. As did my mother before me. They've been around a long time those Chalet School books. I still have the entire series, can't bear to get rid of them!

  5. The Harvester is new to me, but how I love SA. I have so many quotes from that book written in a little book I keep. It was a real eye opener. Things did go off the rails for the author as you say, hope she is back on track now.
    Lisa x

  6. I haven't read any of these books, though Jo of the Chalet School sounds quite like Malory Towers, jolly hockey sticks, lacrosse and all that.

  7. It's interesting to see which books have been important to other people during their lives, as I'm sure that every person you asked would give a different answer. I read one of the Chalet School books but like Jo and Pamela, I'm more familiar with the Malory Towers series. I haven't heard of the other books you have mentioned, but I'll keep an eye out for them now xx

  8. I love reading about other people's favourite reads. I never read any of the Chalet School books, I've never heard of the Harvester, the Simple Abundance book has been on my to read list for a while (thanks for the reminder), and I LOVE Jane Eyre too!

  9. I love Jane Eyre. Your copy is really special.

  10. I haven't read any of these, but they all sound fascinating and books that I would love to read someday! xx


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