Tuesday, 15 January 2008


I read a few great books while I was away.

The most special is one called "The Education of Little Tree" by Forrest Carter. It is an autobiography written as a story about a little boy who goes to live with his Cherokee grandparents when his own parents die. I have marked several pages that I found especially poignant but to reproduce them here would sound so flat. The Cherokee live as a part of nature, only taking what they need. The old granpa teaches the boy how to live in the mountains of Tennessee and it is a book I will always cherish.

The next book is one by Joy Larkcom called " Oriental Vegetables - the complete guide for the gardening cook" . It is the culmination of many years of work, including growing many of them herself, travelling all over Asia to see many growing in their places of most use and research into the origins of them. It clarifies the common names of the vegetables as well as providing the botanical names. There is a wonderful section on cooking and a comprehensive section on growing them. All in all, the best book on Asian vegetable cultivation and use I have seen.

Third would be "Community Gardens" that I borrowed from Barb. It is real tear-jerker when you read of the hardships some people faced before arriving in Australia and the reasons why they have a patch in a community garden. They also talk of their vegetables and give recipes for them. There is a great section on the vegetables - giving descriptions and growing methods as followed by the gardeners themselves.

Another is a book called "Beyond Mombasa" . It is historical fiction about the building of a railway across Kenya and follows the life of a young couple who discover the real Africa of the late 1800's, as the husband takes on the job of chief engineer. The descriptions are heart-felt as the author has spent most of his life in Africa and written other works set there. The characters are realistic and I enjoyed learning about something new.

No comments: