June 12, 2015

Catrin in Wales

Once in awhile I read a really good book that I just need to tell everyone about-especially if it's a lesser known book that needs to be known! This is the case with my latest read, published in 1961, called Catrin in Wales by Mabel Esther Allan.

I picked up this book at a church rummage sale. Actually, it was my mom who found it for me, and I'm SO glad she did! I was immediately attracted to the cover. It's light green and cream and the girl on the front wore a pretty pink jacket with matching lipstick. (So, in the book her jacket is scarlet, but I don't mind. I like the pink better. It goes so well with the green. :))

The book is even more beautiful on the inside. Written from first person, Catrin, deciding to set out on her own, tells of her decision to visit her Welsh aunt, the sister of her deceased mother. Catrin is a town girl through and through, and when an accident forces her to stay in the country and care for the historical priory that her aunt is the keeper of, she longs to get back to London, away from boring rural life.

Of course, Catrin soon finds that the countryside is not boring in the slightest-as she comes to love the people, the beautiful scenery, and even the priory. When the opportunities to leave finally start to arise, she finds herself hesitating about whether she truly wants to leave or not!

In the story, there is a romance that-well, you see it coming right from the get-go, but it nevertheless retains its suspense and sweetness.  *Spoilers ahead*  Catrin and Ifor were so perfect together. At first, she thinks him a rude, ignorant farmer-once she finds out how terribly wrong she was in her assumption (and that he is the brother of her her new friend!), she is sure he would never want to speak to her again after the rude way she treated him in their two chance encounters. They soon become friends though, and I love how their romance starts out as just that-friendship. And oh my, the proposal at the end was sooo sweet. :) They are definitely one of my favorite fictional couples now!  *End of spoilers*

I love how you get everything directly from Catrin's perspective-her fright at staying in the priory overnight, her determination to get home to London, the slowly growing love she has for the village-and the love she has for one of its handsome and surprising inhabitants.

I loved all the characters in the book-they were all so interesting and fresh. And they have beautiful names I've never heard of-names like Gwenfron, Ifor, Olwen...
The descriptions of the town and scenery and-well, everything was just beautiful. I can't really explain how perfect I found this book-it just clicked with me in such a way that I know I'll never forget it! Please read it, because my review doesn't do justice to how absolutely lovely it is!

10 comments:

  1. Natalie, your book reviews always make me want to read a book SOOOO much. Off to Goodreads now to add it to my want-to-read-list now, first thing. :-D

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    1. Wow, Naomi, thank you for your super quick comment! haha I literally just published this. ;)
      I'm so glad!! Yes!! I think it's kind of a rare book, but I REALLY hope you can get it. I think you'd like it a lot!

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    2. HAHA, I know - I saw you had just published it. :-)
      It's SUCH a crying shame that this book is super rare, because you're right, it's so rare I can't find it anywhere online! It's not even on Amazon. I still REAAAALLY want to read it. :-O

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    3. :( I'm so sorry! I want you to read it too! I hope you can find it sometime...perhaps a thrift store or such?

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    4. Haha, I don't think I'd find this book at a thrift store in Belgium. :-/ We don't have many thrift stores either.

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    5. Awww, that's too bad. :( I hope you can perhaps find it some other way sometime! Maybe if I can ever get a second copy I could hold a giveaway! heehee That'd be fun. :)

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  2. Natalie,
    I just read your post and... our library system has this book! Hooray! That cover is one of my favorite types ever: very Nancy Drew like. I love how she looks so "vintage," yet simple and practical, too. Note to self: I need to make more clothes like that. :)

    And the story takes place in WALES! Just a little while ago I read a blog post about Wales which ignited a burning desire to visit the place so finding a book set in the country (and in "oldie" days too) is most exciting!

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    1. Eowyn!!!
      Yay, I'm SO excited! I can't wait for you to get it and read it and tell me what you think! It'll be so fun to have someone to squeal and sigh over this book with. :) Yes, isn't the cover soooo gorgeous? Oh, I agree. I love simply, classy clothes like that. :)

      Really? Oh, now I'm doubly excited for you to read it! I never really "heard" much about Wales, but now that read this book I certainly would love to visit it someday! :D Can't wait to hear your thoughts!

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  3. Ooh! Haha, I know how you feel about wanting everyone to know about a book. This one sounds lovely! I shall have to keep a weather eye out for it:)

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    1. Thanks for commenting! I hope you can read it sometime, Olivia! :)

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