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Amaryllis’ Choice

In News by HanaLeave a Comment

Dearest readers,

I am so happy to say that I am writing this back in my beloved bookshop after far too long an absence.  I hope you have all been well, that you are not on your knees with home-schooling, that you are still on speaking terms with those you live with and, most importantly, that you have had enough books to keep your spirits high.

I am still on speaking terms with my cats, one of which has even become my yoga buddy (I think that is the term…)  I was on furlough for two months and it was a lovely, dreamy time full of sea walks, bluebells and bird watching whilst guiltily aware that others’ stress levels had doubled as had their work load.

Hence my re-emergence from lockdown as some sort of Greek goddess, all bronze and silvery locks!  However, I didn’t read as much as one might think and classics were my comfort reads for that time.  But now I am very excited about all the new books appearing and feverishly working through proofs so that I can share my favourites with you.  Next time, I will have my summer reading selection but meanwhile these are the best so far…

  • Writers and Lovers, Lily King – My friend, M, was so affected by this book that she couldn’t get on her yoga mat for some time afterwards.  It is a moving, funny and real story about writers and lovers – and life.

  • Mr Loverman, Bernadine Evaristo – an earlier book by the Booker winner displaying the same warm heart and dexterity of language.  This is the love story of Barry, 74, married, father to 2 daughters and, for the past 6o years, in a secret relationship with his best friend Morris.  The Monday book group loved it!

  • The Eighth Life, Nino Haratishchvili – this was my read of lockdown – a gorgeous epic, sweeping story of a Georgian family starting after the Russian Revolution and following the female characters up to the present day.

  • Starve Acre, Andrew Michael Hurley – an absolutely gripping story that explores grief within the chilling scope of horror.

  • Night Boat to Tangier, Kevin Barry – I finished this on the way in and Barry’s distinctive writing is still echoing in my ears.  Almost Beckettian in this story of waiting men.

About Amaryllis


Amaryllis is our bookshop blogger.


Her pen name is taken from Alice Thomas Ellis’ Other Side of the Fire, which is unfortunately and scandalously out of print. One of the funniest bits in the book is the bodice-ripper that one of the characters is writing and the female - who slays the men with one toss of her raven locks and one glance from her fiery green eyes as she strides among the glens, faithful wolfhound by her side - is Amaryllis! And the name just seemed to suit so here we are.

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