That man is richest whose pleasures are cheapest – Henry David Thoreau
I live in the UK. A beautiful, green, open and varied country with people of many nationalities, ideas and opinions. Nothing here is mundane – not the weather, not the land, not the food and certainly not the people.
To top it all, we have wonderful access to parks and forests, beaches and lakes, libraries and museums – all free for us to indulge in and right on our doorsteps. We can cycle from the mountain to the sea, to the library and museum, to the open air markets and fairs, learning and experiencing and revelling in the wonders of life.
But I want to speak about one special and wonderful pleasure that makes my heart glow – discovering new authors or musicians or artists or dancers… (there’s no room to cover all these marvels). The creative people who distil the beauty around us and make us see it in a different way, experience it in a different way. And our museums and libraries and creative fairs allow us to experience talents from all over the world.
I truly cannot think of a greater gift than introducing someone to a new creative talent – timeless, elegant and personal.
Which is how I came to discover the author Penny Reid. I was stunned I hadn’t come across her before and am still unable to explain how such a thing could have happened. It’s like walking into my garden one day and suddenly discovering a wall covered in purple wisteria. This wondrous chocolatey gem of an author, with sprinkles on top, has been writing for a while now, but her books had never crossed my path, until I read The Hooker and the Hermit, a collaboration with L.H. Cosway. (This is why librarians are important, people!).
Ms Reid has wit and charm and a thoroughly wonderful expansive format of writing style, full of knowledge and angst and characters that make you want to pet them. In her books, there is nothing boring or twee, she makes no concessions and makes no apologies for the situational comedy she creates (Nico and jelly baths being a case in point).
If you like romance with strong, intelligent characters, wisdom and passion, knowledge and introspection, then check her out. You won’t be disappointed.
Top save you typing, here’s a link: Penny Reid