I love nothing better than loosing myself in a good book. Its the ultimate escape from life (even if its only for a few precious minutes). The latest book I am reading is ‘An Island Parish’ by Nigel Farrell. Now I have read this book before a while ago but love it so much I have decided to read it again.
I have always been fascinated by the idea of what it would be like to live on an island. That feeling of being away from everything but being part of a close knit community where the simple things in life are more appreciated.
The book focusses on several characters who have all decided for various reasons to give up on their life on the mainland, escape it all and go live on the Isle’s of Scilly. They are all in pursuit of their dreams, whether its to find love, to spend their time doing a pursuit they never previously had time to do or just to experience simple island life. The main characters are a photographer turned baker who’s now trying his hand at running a pub, a schoolteacher who gave it all up to become a master brewer, a German foot model who’s now the island’s vet and tour guide, a flower farmer who’s discovered his talents really lie in painting landscapes and the Bishop’s chauffeur and former farm labourer who followed a calling to become Chaplain to the Isles.
These characters are real people, the writer and broadcaster Nigel Farrell spends a summer living with these people and discovers that living on a island can sometimes be very tough but also like nothing else he has ever encountered. The beautiful scenery of the island is breathtaking and helps even the most cynical of minds realise that we really all are just trying to live a happy and fulfilled life, its just that some people choose to do it in a very different way.
The Scilly Isles is one of the most remote parts of England. The small population is constantly leaving the islands for the mainland, those left behind are having to work harder and harder to make a living. Nigel Farrell helped create a documentary for BBC2 filming the islanders over a period of two years the series was called ‘An Island Parish’.
With a cast of fascinating characters and a beautiful setting, this is the story of the events during a summer on the island.
The book seeks out the funniest, saddest and most interesting experiences of island life and will certainly make you dream of a life far away on a unspoilt island surrounded by beautiful sandy beaches and sparkling (if a little chilly) seas.
I would definitely recommend this book, its easy to follow and get absorbed in and clearly demonstrates there is never a dull moment when living on an island!
If you have read this book or something similar then I’d love to hear about it, any recommendations for similar reads also greatly received! Now time to put the kettle on, biscuits out and on with the page turning…………