The Unlikely Pilgrimage of Harold Fry – a novel by Rachel Joyce
I could not wait to read this book once I discovered it through social media. The author had me with the title. I deeply enjoyed the journey with Harold Fry and learning about he and his wife. I wasn’t at all suspecting the twist that unravels near the end of the journey. Whoa!
I found it to be a journey of self-discovery and healing for Harold and his wife, Maureen. Along with a varied mix of characters ebbing and flowing throughout the journey. I was inspired by Harold’s listening to the pull to do something absolutely remarkable; without even understanding why he felt the need to do it.
Book Blurb: Meet Harold Fry, recently retired. He lives in a small English village with his wife, Maureen, who seems irritated by almost everything he does. Little differentiates one day from the next. Then one morning a letter arrives, addressed to Harold in a shaky scrawl, from a woman he hasn’t heard from in twenty years. Queenie Hennessy is in hospice and is writing to say goodbye. But before Harold mails off a quick reply, a chance encounter convinces him that he absolutely must deliver his message to Queenie in person. In his yachting shoes and light coat, Harold Fry embarks on an urgent quest. Determined to walk six hundred miles to the hospice, Harold believes that as long as he walks, Queenie will live.
Great basic book about mindfulness. My daughter, Lillian, was writing a report about mindfulness so we checked this out for her, yet I secretly got it for me too.
“If you cannot find joy in peace in these very moments if sitting, then the future itself will only flow by as a river flows by, you will not be able to hold it back, you will be incapable of living the future when it has become the present. Joy and peace are the joy and peace possible in this very hour of sitting. If you cannot find it here, you won’t find it anywhere.” -Thich Nhat Hanh
from the book … The Miracle of Mindfulness is a classic guide to meditation that has introduced generations of readers to the life-changing beauty of mindful awareness. Zen Master Thich Nhat Hanh offers gentle anecdotes and practical exercise as a means of learning the skills of mindfulness. From washing the dishes to answering the phone to peeling an orange, he reminds us that each moment holds within it an opportunity to work toward greater self-understanding and peacefulness.
What is your favorite story that is in “Where Would You Fly”?
My favorite is all my stories in the book but if I had to choose just one, I would choose the story Princess Beauty.
What would you choose as your mascot, spirit animal, or avatar and why?
I would choose lion or a snake as a spirit animal because I act fierce and hyper sometimes but other times I’m quiet like a snake.
What does your ideal writing space look like?
My ideal writing space is a writing desk with a computer, pens, pencils, piles of books, and erasers.
What are you currently reading?
I just finished “The Eyes of The Unicorn” by Teresa Bateman and “Meg, Joe, Beth Amy The Story of Little Women And Why It Still Matters” by Anne Boyd Sioux. I’m currently reading “Sea Monster” by Jordan Quinn which is part of a series called The Kingdom of Wrenly.
What do you do when not writing or marketing your books?
I paint, read, draw, be silly, hang out with family when I’m not writing.
If you could have a fantasy tea or coffee date with an author or famous person from the past or present, who would it be and what would you ask them?
I would choose Louisa May Alcott or Robert Frost. I would ask, “What’s your favorite story? ” to Louisa May Alcott or I would ask, “What’s your favorite thing about living in New Hampshire? ” to Robert Frost.
What is the most surprising thing you’ve learned about yourself through writing?
The most surprising thing that I learned about myself through writing is that I’m humorous.
Do you journal write or keep a personal diary? Has this helped with your published writings? If so, how?
I used to journal write but I hope to journal write again. The journal writings haven’t helped with my book.
What is the most amusing, crazy or inspiring thing that has ever happened to you?
Accomplishing going up and down stairs in San Antonio, TX is the most inspiring and crazy thing that has happened to me so far.
If you could turn into one of your characters for a day, which one would it be and why, what would you do?
I would turn into Princess Britney for a day because she had a magical life.
What’s the last movie you watched and why did you choose to watch it?
The last movie I watched was Mary Poppins Returns. I chose to watch it because it sounded intriguing and inspiring from the trailer.
A penguin knocks on your door and is wearing a sombrero. What does he say and why is he there?
The penguin that was wearing a sombrero said in a Mexican accent, “Yum, do I smell nachos with Mexican-Italian cheese sauce?”
Do you believe things happen for a reason? Do you have an example from your own life to share why you believe this?
Yes, I believe things happen for a reason. Yes, I do have an example. One time I had a vision-like dream of one of my friends and I sitting on a bench in a school-like place and then I woke up. I found out that she was going to the same conference almost 3 months later.
Which of your personality traits has been most useful and why?
My humor, my love of nature, creativity, and my imagination have been very useful personality traits.
What’s your favorite place to visit in your country and why?
I like to go to a conference every summer in a different city. As of so far, Savannah and Salt Lake City are my favorite cities.
Lillian Darnell is 17 years old. She likes to read, draw, paint, write, track weather and enjoys being in nature. She has 18p- which is a chromosome difference that affects 1 in every 56, 000 people.
Thank you Lillian for joining us today! It was magical learning more about you. –Camilla
Here’s a bit about the book:
Welcome to the radiant imagination of Lillian Darnell, a wonderful and unique human being, the kind who comes around only once in every 56,000 births, as she is missing the short arm of her 18th chromosome.
Leave this reality behind and enter enchanted lands awash in mysteries, happy endings, adventures, and inspiration. Come within and discover heartwarming and beautiful tales, woven with love and magic, brought forth from the imagination of a young woman with a different perspective. Lose yourself in wondrous adventures as you follow courageous, enchanting characters, kind animals and plant life, and graceful Mother Nature.
The delightful tales, legends, and poems within these pages were written by Lillian Darnell between the ages of four and fifteen. The stories and poems are mostly edited for spelling and grammar, yet the bulk of the stories remain as she originally wrote and published them to include a few grammatical errors and made up words.
Will a girls dream of becoming a princess come true? How can sad, mischievous, fearful animals help humans feel emotions? How did the world come to have color?
(Go here to view the interactive Google Pin Map of Where the Book Has Flown So Far)
“You can’t help but feel happy and be inspired while reading this book. Lillian’s stories jump straight out of her heart and onto the pages in an authentic, innocent, and loving way. The world needs more positivity and happiness and her stories are bursting with both. Thank you Lillian!” -G. Brian Benson – Award-winning and best-selling author, actor and TEDx speaker.
“Let your imagination be taken away with Lillian Darnell’s writings and allow yourself to be transported to places where anything is possible with love, joy and a touch of inspiration. This collection is born from a young woman with a unique perspective on how our world could be – immerse yourself and come, see the world through Lillian’s eyes.” -Dr Veronica Wain – Award winning filmmaker, Academic, Author, Disability Advocate
“Although all of us who love fairies understand that children, with their vivid imaginations, are closer to magic than any of us, we all yearn to retain that childlike sense of wonder. Lillian Darnell’s writings are a welcome reminder of what is possible when you dream big, and accept no limitations.” – Grace Nuth, Senior Editor – Faerie Magazine
**Artist: Nazar Rybak Title: Children Fun Times http://www.hooksounds.com
Sample story from the book:
TRUTHFUL ART – A CHINESE LEGEND
Way back in the 1920s there was a lady in her mid-twenties who thought, “The art I have in my mind will eventually happen soon.” Her name was Artful. Three days later she created three paintings named Liletta, Tinletta, and Ciletta.
When Artful wasn’t around the three paintings talked about for whom they were thought to be made. One day Artful thought she had heard the three paintings talk, but she thinks that she heard nothing.
After that day, she hid behind a door and listened. Then she walked in and asked them about what they were talking. So they lied then. Artful had thought, “What can I do to make them truthful paintings?”
Just then a magical creature had appeared and it told Artful to take as many wishes as she could take. So three seconds later, they told the truth to Artful who explained the whole thing to them.
Artful was so pleased that she entered all three of the paintings in an art contest. Five days later, they won first prize and Artful was amazed.
To this day, they can be seen in art museums or an art book.
I have been incorporating more fiction into my reading as that was my first love. More coming … The list is already growing of what I’ve read so far …. And, there’s a fiction or two wanting to be birthed from my heart.
A novel written in 1895 by one of the most popular story-tellers of Hungarian literature, Kálmán Mikszáth (1847-1910). This was one of the most popular he ever wrote. Wonderful story that held my attention. Nearing the end I couldn’t put it down as I wanted to know how it all unfolded. Great story built from the ground up surrounding an elusive and honored red umbrella.
From the book flap:Set in a small village in Upper Hungary, the main line of the story concerns the treasure-hunt of Gyuri Wibra, whose eccentric father put his fortune in an open bank-draft and hit it in the handle of an umbrella, and Gyuri finding true love with the girl who was once miraculously protected by it. The complications arising out of the search for the umbrella provide Mikszáth with an opportunity to work on two different levels – devising anexciting hunt for the inheritance and at the same time observing the significance, in terms of mass psychology, of a seemingly worthless object. St. Peter’s Umbrella, it is said, was so much admired by Theodore Roosevelt, that he visited Mikszáth during his European trip in 1910 to express his admiration.