Tamar, whose warm and eloquent writing in her blog, In and Out of Confidence, I read with ever-increasing pleasure, invited me to do the currently circulating Book Meme.
In Fahrenheit 451, which book would you be?
Jane Eyre by Charlotte Bronte. For everyone who has been a passionate misunderstood child; for every clever, stubborn woman who has seen herself as plain and shy, who has simultaneously, impossibly, despised and esteemed herself in equal measure, it must be preserved.
Have you ever had a crush on a fictional character?
Many times. Most recently, Thomas Janeway in Waxwings by Jonathan Raban. Clearly somewhat based on the author. Much play is made of his unruly, unbecoming frizzy curls – jacket photos show that Jonathan Raban has the straightest hair you ever saw…
What was the last book you bought?
Here is Where We Meet by John Berger. His new book, bought in hardback to celebrate the huge, huge pleasure I have found in the current London season of films, exhibitions and discussions about and around his work. Novel? memoir? travel book? Just itself, as he seems always to be just himself.
Kandahar Cockney by James Ferguson. The true account of his Afghan friend’s life in London. Warm, but fairly unflinching. A terribly important story.
Which five books would you take to a desert island?
Today’s answer. I suspect it would be different every day:
Teach Yourself Herbal Medicine by Nina Nissen. A precious small book which distils the wisdom of a 21st century healer and wisewoman, whose class I had the good fortune to attend for year.
Change Your Mind by Paramananda. An introduction to Buddhist meditation by a poet and rigorous, heartfelt teacher. The first book I ever read on the subject. Not surpassed, though many others have meant a lot.
The six Palliser novels by Anthony Trollope. Everything I look for in fiction. From the nineteenth century, from the other sex, this frankly astonishes me. But they are.
The Children: Refugees and Migrants, photos by Sebastião Salgado. His heart is as great as his talent.
The Essential Rumi. Every poem new every time I read it.
Who are you passing this to? Everyone who hasn't done it and would like to.
¶ 12:46 pm
The blue door is exquisite! Thanks so much for your kind words about my writing. I love and concur so much about Jane Eyre and what she represents in how you tell it.
And just all round great to read you again. I had been wondering where you were.