With my Wednesday afternoon client away on holiday recently I've been able to pay one of my occasional visits to a local book exchange in the village where I work every Wednesday morning. Several titles took my fancy, but this one provided the perfect reading material as we travelled up North to collect TYM at the weekend.
It's not a title which had me reaching for the dictionary every other word or scratching my head over complicated plot lines. It's the tale of a non descript kind of man called Harold Fry who leads a humdrum, routine bound life until one day he received a mysterious pink envelope. The contents force memories from 20 years before to bubble to the surface and he makes the spontaneous and lifechanging decision to walk from his home in Devon to Berwick.
The story is presented in a fuss free manner, but he is the quintessential English gentleman who doesn't want to make a fuss or put anyone to any trouble and as you accompany him on his unplanned journey the changes you witness in him and those who have known him for years or those he encounters fleetingly create a narrative full of moments of humour, pathos and surprise. It is an outer and inner voyage of discovery for all those involved and a gentle, original approach taken to the familiar topic of overcoming adversity.
I had hoped to make it my book of choice for our Bookclub, but they read it a couple of years ago and it was apparently a popular choice.