Paradoxes and a New Book Love

- 5 comments - Reading

Ahhh, the paradox of being a parent: that I can adore my children SO fiercely…yet feel such exhilaration when the door closes behind them, they head out for adventure, and I’m left alone to read and write to my heart’s content!

Luckily, they’re heading out with two loving relatives to look after them, and they’re both excited about the prospect, so I don’t even have to feel guilty about my bliss today. ;)

Have I ever mentioned that my favorite cake shop in town (or, indeed, in the world) also has a massive set of bookcases lining one long wall, full of interesting secondhand books for sale? (It really is like heaven – delicious Lindt chocolate cake AND books!) Yesterday, when the two little boys and I visited the cake shop, as well as eating well, I bought myself a pre-loved copy of Katherine Swift’s memoir-cum-gardening-cum-history book The Morville Hours, and ohhhh, it is so, so good. The gorgeous writing just sucks me in every single time I pick up the book.


If you love gardening or history or just beautiful, immersive writing, I highly recommend it! (Personally, I can appreciate and even love beautiful gardens that other people have created, but I’ve never enjoyed gardening myself. So the truth is, I felt slightly wary of this book when it first came out several years ago, because of its gardening focus…but the history angle was enough to make me pick it up anyway when I spotted it on the bookshelf by our table yesterday, and the writing is so luscious that I’m actually loving all the gardening details, too!)

It’s been a great half-term, full of paper dragons and wizards and adventures…but this morning, while my boys are out having fun with other adult relatives, I’ll be curling up to write, to catch up on overdue beta-reads and critiques for writer-friends…and to sink into The Morville Hours with total delight.

Happy Friday!


  1. Thank you for the recommendation! That book does sound perfect to wander through and get lost. One of the delights of the used book stores: things pop up that missed your radar when they came out. And also good to have friends who point these out, when they slipped past more than one radar. So glad you had a good outing!

    • Yes! I love used book stores – and when there’s cake on offer, too, WELL – ! :)

      I really hope you enjoy the book if you try it!

  2. Oh, that bookshop/cafe sounds wonderful, Stephanie! And I know *exactly* what you mean on the paradox of parenting ;-) Thank you, too, for the book recommendation – I shall put it on my wish-list! x

    • Thank you for telling me that, Sarah! :) And I hope you get a chance to try The Morville Hours – it really is lovely!

  3. Off to check out this book on Amazon…and a Regency fantasy series for kids…?! Yes and more yes!

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