Few Eggs and No Oranges

22 Nov 2006

Reading to your children is one of the treasures of parenthood. So many lovely books to share, some from your own youth and others to be found for the first time. Then your children grow and go on their own reading adventure. Some are voracious readers, others more reluctant. My eldest son is the latter. He has always read what he has to for school and only occasionally read fiction for pleasure. He does enjoy reading about anything to do with cricket but is suspicious of the novel.
Two days ago he completed senior English, now it is completely up to him if he ever reads another work of fiction. Can you remember how that felt? The realisation that books could now be for pleasure rather than work. I found it liberating though I was grateful for my introduction to some of my favourite authors courtesy of my senior English curriculum: F. Scott Fitzgerald, D.H. Lawrence, J.D Salinger. There have been many more since then ofcourse, and I discovered the magic of the short story also. I didn't ever study English Literature at University but I have always tried to read a broad range of writing styles and have often become besotted with a certain author and tried to read their entire catalogue.
A couple of years ago I discovered a funny little book, well at 600 pages it is not so little.
It is a thoroughly charming diary kept by a single woman who lived in London throughout WWII. I have borrowed it from the library three times and because it is a bit of a scruffy looking book I had worried that it might be retired. Some months ago I read of Persephone Books at Yarnstorm, I also read about them in the Country Living magazine. Imagine my surprise when I went to investgate and found they had republished my special book.
I ordered a copy, never having bought a book on-line before and about a week later it arrived. It doesn't have the same cover as the original because all the Persephone books are dressed in grey.

Now this week a copy of the catalogue and their quarterly magazine has arrived jut in time for my Christmas shopping. So many wonderful books to choose from, mostly from the first half of the 20th century and mostly written by women. I rather fancy "The New House" by Lettice Cooper and "Family Roundabout" by Richmal Crompton, also "The Homemaker" by Dorothy Canfield Fisher. But really they all sound really interesting. I suppose I can slowly make my way through the list of 70 books.

Each book has wonderful individual endpaper,something to do with the period the book was written or sometimes based on the original cover.

Blogger was misbehaving badly while I was publishing this and some pictures and words have disappeared but I'm too frustrated to try to fix it.

7 Responses to “Few Eggs and No Oranges”

  1. Ooh! How lovely! I too am a voracious reader...for pleasure and for mamon! I shall now go forth and look up Persephone Books.

  2. I love reading but find myself only snatching a few pages here and there. One of my to-do's is to find some time and give myself the chance to read.

    The Persephone books have always caught my eye, I have a couple of books which have since appeared on their lists (although not actually printed by Persephone), such as "One Pair of Hands" by Monica Dickens.


  3. I will also have to have a look at Persophone Books - how lovely! I love to read (and I've added a little reading blog to my blog - Reading at the Nest - it's in my sidebar). I love reading to my children and there are such wonderful children's books now, even for older children (my oldest is 12). They all love to read and to be read to. I've always read a lot - it's very comforting to me to have a good book going! That book you're featuring sounds wonderful!

  4. I read about Persephone books on a blog as well. I went to check the website out. It is so wonderful. I bought a book for my mother-in-law, one for my sister-in-law and one for me. The one for me is No Oranges and Few Eggs. I am going to wrap it up as a gift to myself, so I can't read it until after Christmas. I'm so excited, I feel like a little kid.

  5. If a was young--I was a booksseller and I cant imagine my life without books.I'am always reading books. My favourit book is Carol Graham Chudley , Between the Gardens, I have read this books several times.
    Now I am working with fairy- tale

  6. Thanks for the link to Persephone Books. I can't imagine a life without books. In college I began making a list of books I'd like to read. My list is longer now than it was 15 years ago!

  7. Wandered in from the blogosphere... and thought I'd say how wonderful Persephone Books are! I'd definitely encourage you to follow your temptation - Family Roundabout is brilliant, my favourite. All the ones I've read have been wonderful, and I don't think you can go far wrong. For more sombre, but equally excellent, reading, check out EM Delafield's Consequences, also Persephone. Enjoy!


Thanks so much for taking the time to chat. I don't always have time to reply but I do read every message you leave.