What I read in November 2018 (Part 1)

The Art of Coorie How to Live Happy the Scottish Way by Gabriella Bennett

This book was promoted by its publisher, Black and White Publishing, on #TheTalkoftheTown in September. The Talk of the Town is a biweekly link-up for book bloggers. I have been linking posts there for several months. The bloggers co-hosting the link-up are Lindsay (Bookboodle) and Shaz from Jera’s Jamboree. Each month there is a giveaway. I was surprised to learn that I had won this book.

Gabriella Bennett is a journalist and the book has a similarity to glossy magazines, although the pages are matt. It is a very handsome hardback volume. The theme of the book is living cosily in spite of the Scottish climate and the midges!

I am not Scottish, but after England, where I live some fifty miles from the border with Scotland, I have spent more time in Scotland than in any other country. I also have some lovely Scottish friends.

I read the book from cover to cover and found much of interest. It is well-organised, well-designed and quirky, perhaps aimed at younger people. Once the idea of having a custom play list while entertaining friends had been mentioned, the book itself had a “Now playing” accompaniment. I found all the tracks on YouTube later. Some of them were more to my taste than others.

The linguistic style uses Scottish dialect words, as might be expected from the title. A glossary is included part way through. I found it much easier to follow the text than to follow the speech of some Glaswegians, whose company I have had on intercity trains. (They tend to speak rather quickly. One of the joys of reading is that the reader sets the pace and can reread anything, which needs extra thought.)

There are many aspects of The Art of Coorie, which match my own interests – walking, textiles, language, tradition, countryside, and beautiful photographs. It is a gentle book with ideas for places to eat, buy books and go camping (not my idea of fun!). There are even recipes for food and drink.

I’d recommend this book to anyone who is interested in Scotland. There is sure to be something to catch the imagination, even if some sections are skipped. It would look well on any coffee table.