Posted by Emma Darlington on

Welcome back to my blog... 

I hope that this entry finds you safe well and not too frustrated during this period of lockdown. With a little more time on my hands recently with the majority of the spring fairs cancelled. I have had more time to read, cook and reflect on things that I have found interesting as well as updating the website together with lovely Kate for our exciting colourful new Spring Summer 2020 collection. I thought that rather than keep it all to myself it might be fun to introduce you to some of my favourite things, from Italian food, drinks, observations, gardening ideas, as well as a few of my favourite books that I have read during lockdown. 

So here goes let us start with sharing a couple of books which I would like to recommend to you. 

William Boyd - Sweet Caress

A wonderful book I loved it. Amory Clay lives a full adventurous and many would say dangerous life. Introduced to photography by her infamous gay Uncle Greville she moves seamlessly from a rather tame photographing of London socialites to covering images of exciting and risky 1920’s Berlin, She shot images of New York in the 1930s through to her media coverage in France in the Second world war. The story unfurls through the visual camera lens of an unforgettable woman, who captures heavy scenes with the lightest touch.

My further thoughts on this book:

My first thoughts, what a great writer to have created such a heroic leading lady, his story crafts an incredible woman! At a  time when many women lived and stayed at home in a male-dominated society, Amory had the drive and courage to share her observations through the lens of her camera. Taking us on a rich journey from the liberal sexuality of Berlin, through fast-developing New York and then sharing her feminine observations of the second world war in France.


 Candice Carty-Williams -‘ Queenie' 

A beautiful cleverly written book, a softly crafted political fiction about race, gender and sex. A candid and funny story of a black woman's life The author's clarity of Queenie illustrates well her black female identity from her humour to her pain, her definitive politics, her friends and family and her sexual encounters. A brilliant first novel and one to explore funny take on dating and the independence of black women today.

My further thoughts on this book:

A  great book looking at the funny but sometimes uncomfortable tale of a young women's trials in love, life and identity. I am glad I am not that age again !! How about you. Let me know what you think…


Ana Johns - The Woman in the White Kimono 

A beautiful emotional story set in Japan in 1957. A powerful exploration of indomitably of the human spirit set against the backdrop of post world war 2 Japan. A portrait of one woman torn between her culture and her heart. Naoko is committed to a pre-arranged marriage set up by her father, but she has fallen in love with an American sailor and no longer wishes to marry him. This will bring shame to her entire family. When it is discovered that Naoko carries the sailor's child, she is cast out in disgrace and forced to make unimaginable choices, with consequences that will ripple through generations.

My further thoughts on this book:

This book has a real cinematic quality. One I would be more than happy to read again. Although a work of fiction much of the book is based on real events and stories of the author and her fathers' lives. I found myself imagining how different the cultures of Americans and Japanese people would have been at that time. The relaxed American approach versus the Japanese formal style of communication and expectation.

I hope that you may read one of these books and can't wait to hear about how you got on. 

Keep an eye on our Instagram for our recipes, favourite products and more that we look forward to sharing with you. 

Stay safe and well! Take care of those you love. Emm x x

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