— But you will be ready to say, what was your hope in doing this? — What did you look forward to? — To any thing, every thing — to time, chance, circumstances, slow effects, sudden bursts, perserverance and weariness ... Every possibility of good was before me, and the first of blessings secured ... — from Emma, by Jane Austen (1775-1817)
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February 3, 2012

Quiet, lovely



It was one of those still, quiet days of winter, when everything seems to be waiting. No breeze disturbed the plumes of smoke from Thrush Green's chimneys. The trees stood bare and motionless. On the hedges small drops of moisture hung; no breath of wind disturbed them, no beam of sunlight brought them to life. ...
      About half a mile along the quiet road she came to a low wall of Cotswold stone, built by a craftsman years before, stone upon stone, so skilfully, that although no mortar had touched it the dry stones had weathered many a gale and blizzard and remain untouched.
      Ella leant upon its comforting roughness, took out the battered tobacco tin which accompanied her everywhere, and began to roll herself one of the shaggy vile-smelling cigarettes for which she was noted. Lighting one untidy end she drew in a refreshing breath of strong smoke. Before her, in December haze, stretched mile upon mile of Cotswold country, ploughed fields, grazing pastures, distant smoky woodland, valleys and hills, Here, in this quiet lovely place, Ella knew that she must put her thoughts in order.
from Winter in Thrush Green, by Miss Read

Have you read these books? I've always loved them, and when our library added a stash of them to its e-book service I happily loaded a few of them onto my Nook.  Perfect bedtime reading, and as close to winter as we seem to be getting around here.


4 comments:

Cath said...

I love the Thrush Green books to bits. I've read seven and have the next two on reserve at the library. I like them, as you said, for bedtime reading. They are so gentle and engaging.

Mary said...

I love love love the 'Miss Read' novels! They remind me of the 'Mitford Books' by Jan Karon, but i love them a little more, i think. Perhaps because of the setting? :)

Joan Hunter Dunn said...

Oh what a reminder of childhood those books are.

Nan said...

Love, love them! I'm reading them all over again.

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