Wednesday, 4 September 2013

Travellin' Penguin goes to Cornwall...

The Penguin has been in Cornwall this week with Rosamunde Pilcher.  I have not read a Pilcher novel since probably the 1970's (?)  and I believe that was The  Shell Seekers which at the time I really loved.

No I did not buy this book but it was a pick from the charity table when I was at a meeting of the Dog's  Home.  The Dog's Home auxiliary is a meeting I go to once a month on a Monday afternoon and we raise money for the Dog's Home of Tasmania.  (Dogs are here) A very worthwhile pursuit considering my love of all animals and especially dogs.  We always give a dollar or two donation and are able to take home something from the little corner table. Might be a bag of tomatoes or a chocolate bar or a book.  I don't count a donation to the dog's home in return for a book that isn't supposed to be sold in the first place buying a book and going against my challenge. I know I am on very shaky ground here but the alternative was to not give the donation as the tomatoes and chocolates were quickly snapped up.  That's the story anyway and I am going to stick to it. After the meeting and foraging through the donation swap table of items supplied by all of our  members we then eat large pieces of cream cake and have lovely cups of tea. I am one of the younger members of the group and those ladies that are 20 years older than I am can sure bake. (By the way it is okay to look at the dogs because we have a zero euthanasia policy. No matter how much work it takes to make the dogs ready for adoption or how long they need to stay there that is what happens with the rare exception of a very sick or extremely aggressive dog). 

The book that came home with me is called The Carousel and I think it was one of those freebies that come attached to women's magazines as a complimentary gift to bolster sales.  It was also published in 1983 originally so counts towards my Century of Books challenge.

As Trav Penguin stepped off the train in Cornwall the first persons he encountered were Prue and Charlotte. Prue is a young woman who lives near London who was coming to stay with her aunt Phoebe who has broken her arm. Phoebe is a Bohemian type artist whose partner died some years before and everyone loves her. She wears flouncy colourful clothes.  Along with Prue is a young girl, about 8 years old who was also on the train. Charlotte was put on the train by her father who doesn't seem to care much about her and is being sent to stay with her grandmother in Cornwall, Mrs. Tolliver who really is much too aristocratic and old to care for this tyke. Charlotte's mother is swanning around Europe dallying with strange men. She can't possibly let this young girl interfere with her life either.  Besides Charlotte has an older brother who really is much more important because after all he is a boy.

Travellin' Penguin loves Cornwall and loves the underdogs such as this little girl he meets so he continues to follow their story.

Another character who enters unexpectedly but whom everyone seems to love is Daniel who is becoming famous for his art and has an exhibition coming up in London and he decides to pop in on his friends in Cornwall. He has not met Prue before but was a long time friend of Phoebe, also an artist who encouraged him his in success.  They are all proud of him. He is also good looking and Prue finds him much more attractive than the young man from Scotland who will be a boring old professional that her mother keeps pushing her on to.

Travellin Penguin has this story completely figured out especially when it turns out there are secrets in the village regarding Daniel and Mrs. Tolliver's families.  By the way Charlotte is also a very talented young artist and is drawn toward's Phoebe's household where she spends most of her time because she is so happy there with Daniel, Prue and Phoebe.

This book however predictable, was fluffy and very much a comfort read. The Penguin and I enjoyed it as we laid in bed early one morning walking through Cornwall, sitting at the seaside sketching seagulls in a light rain, that of course we barely noticed and once finished we continued with our day in Hobart with a light step and a smile on our face.  Lovely little book. You have to read the story to learn of the significance of the title, The Carousel.

This is a giveaway book.  If you would like me to send you this copy (anywhere in the world) then please leave a comment by Sunday 11 pm 8 Sep't. New York time and I will put your name into to see if it will visit you. Sorry guys but Trav Penguin stays here with me.


  1. Winter Solstice is my favourite of hers

    1. I have heard of that one but not read it. She is such a comfort read with her books though I've only ever read two. I have another one of her books on my shelf I know of and possibly another but not sure. Ha ha...all the more reason to get stuck into my own books for the rest of the year. Lovely to hear from you.

  2. I hsve never, ever read any of her work. What's a good one to try first?

    1. As I have ever only read 2 of her books I probably can't help a lot. See Elaine's comment above. I do know the Shell Seekers was very popular and I enjoyed that years ago when I read it. They're very light comfort read types of books I think. Time to explore I guess. Nice to hear from you Christine.

  3. I prefer Rosamunde Pilcher's longer books to the shorter ones, but she always does Cornwall very well. And I say that as a native of the area she lived in and drew inspiration from.

  4. I can understand that. I imagine there is a bit more depth and of course the story can be developed to a much greater degree. Thanks for popping by. Pam


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