Elizabeth and her German Garden: Elizabeth von Arnim

★★★★

After discovering Elizabeth von Arnim* through The Enchanted April, I was keen to read some more of her work and the natural next step was to find a copy of this book: her first novel, published in 1898. It has been a complete joy to read. Presented in the form of a diary by the semi-autobiographical Elizabeth, it takes the reader through the span of a year in her beloved garden in Northern Germany, following her trials and errors in planting and her passionate appreciation of the way every season affects her little corner of the earth.

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The Enchanted April: Elizabeth von Arnim

★★★★

As London wallows in an almost Mediterranean heatwave, it seemed the perfect time to embark on this book, first published in 1922. It’s the first thing I’ve read by Elizabeth von Arnim, and it’s so established a modern classic that I really should have read it years ago. Despite its fame, I had no idea what to expect, but the novel captured me with its opening scenes in a wet, grey, almost monochrome London, and carried me off (genuinely enchanted) to its sun-kissed Italian shores.

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