Isn’t it lovely when you fall in love with a fictional character and then you discover that you have the same taste in books?
That’s just what happened to me. I met Gussie, a twelve year old girl living just across the bay from me in St Ives towards the end of last year in Ann Kelley’s The Burying Beetle. Gussie has a serious heart condition but is so alive her head full of ideas, dreams, nature, books …
I loved Gussie and her story so much that I am already reading the next installment – The Bower Bird. Now I knew that Gussie loved her books and that she was making some fine selections, but I was beyond thrilled when I read these words:
“I reluctantly leave the starlit night and get into my bed. I’m reading a really good book by Mary Webb called Gone to Earth. It’s about a girl who has a pet fox. Mary Webb has written several other books. I’ll have to look out for them at car boot sales or in the second-hand bookshop, as they are so old they are probably out of print.”
One of my favourite authors, one of her best books, and a Virago Modern Classic to boot!]
And note those great book-hunting instincts.
How I wish I could introduce her to the Virago Modern Classics Group on LibraryThing – she would fit right in!
I recognise Mary Webb’s Gone to Earth as being one of the first ten titles Penguin chose to publish. I haven’t got around to reading it yet, but now that you’ve recommended it I’ll put it on my list of books to read soon
Karyn, I should warn you that while I love Mary Webb, she has her critics. She wrotes the kind of rural melodrama that was parodied by Stella Gibbons in Cold Comfort Farm.
This sounds lovely! I’m now putting The Burying Beetle on my TBR list. 🙂
It’s a lovely book Eva, catching both the child and the place perfectly.
I do love when that happens in a book and you can’t help but smile and sink a little lower in your chair.
I love reading about characters that also love to read. I always find myself checking over their reading lists to see what they’ve read, and adding the ones I haven’t to my to-read lists. I think I’m going to get hooked on Viragos the way I’m hooked on Persephones. Which is both good and bad.
I love coming across such kindred spirits in my reading! It instantly makes both the character and his or her creator seem like a friend. I might just have to check Ann Kelley out for myself now!
I like the sound of this one, I’ll look out for it. Precious Bane is a wonderful book, too, if you want to read more Mary Webb.