Saturday 22 February 2014

Desert Island Books.

1. Pookie by Ivy Wallace.
2. The Four Men by Hilaire Belloc
3. Cautionary Tales also by Hilaire Belloc.
4. Cold Comfort Farm by Stella Gibbons.
6. Les Trois Contes by Gustave Flambert.
7. Any comprehensive Anglo/Latin/French Etymological Dictionary.
8. L'Etranger by Albert Camus.

Traditionally one can only take 8 (records) books onto one's desert island, but maybe I could smuggle just two more. I would hate to be without....

9. Mythologies by W B Yeats.
10. (and just so that solitude doesn't suck me dry of humour) Decline and Fall by Evelyn Waugh.

I've always hated the pompous obscure record choices of certain people on Desert Island Disc's, and have tried to be honest with my choice of books. They are not designed to impress, they are all works that mean a lot to me, from childhood to now!

Do you have a list?

NOTA BENE: For non Brits, 'Desert Island Discs' is an English Radio programme (devised by Roy Plomley) where 'celebs' choose what 8 records they would take with them, should they be banished to a desert island.


  1. Pookie - I used to have that once upon a time.

  2. I haven't heard of half of your list I'm afraid - to reduce it down to eight would be very hard after a lifetime of reading.

  3. I see we overlap on Cold Comfort Farm, may I also take,
    I Capture the Castle, Dodie Smith,
    The Poisonwood Bible, Barbara Kingsolver
    The Millennium Trilogy, Stieg Larson
    Winter in Madrid, C.J. Sansom
    Heartstone, "
    Love in a Cold Climate, Nancy Mitford
    The Diary of a Nobody, Weedon and Grossmith
    I see, worryingly I may be living mainly in the past!

  4. Mmmmm not easy...
    Ray Means - autobiography
    Moby Dick -Herman Melville
    David Gemmel - legend
    Robinson Crusoe -
    Treasure island
    Frankinstine- Shelly
    Lord of the rings
    And a decent how to identify edible plants and other food on a desert island....

  5. Like hotel rooms, is it still obligatory to have the Bible with you on Desert Island Discs? I think I'd like to have a book about Telepathy so I could mentally send messages of help to people. :D

  6. So you still love Hillaire Belloc?

    1. An Anglo/Frog like myself; what's not to love!

  7. 101 ways to entertain with coconuts
    The Rum Distiller's Handbook
    The Field Guide to Hallucinogenic Plants and Fungi
    Other Things to Eat When Bored with Lobster
    Roll The Perfect Cuban Cigar; the edition that comes complete with all traditional hand rolling accessories, (doesn't matter what she is called but I prefer a late eighties, early nineties version).
    Grand Designs: Luxury Beach Houses
    Idyllic Swimming Pools
    How to Say, 'Bugger off! I don't need rescuing' in One Hundred Different Languages.

    I think that's eight books...

    1. Actually, that last title should be amended by inserting after the word 'rescuing', '...but I could do with a bit of cheese'

    2. I think you've covered almost everything that I omitted, but I had presumed that the island came with its own extensive pool (and dusky maidens).

  8. You referred to the policemen in white helmets yesterday Cro. It would be nice to just see a policeman there doesn't seem to be any on the beat now they're all in cars, and not many helmets all caps.
    I'm sure you would be horrified if you came for visit now, things have changed so much.

  9. how to survive on a deserted island
    the castaways cook book
    island decor
    minimalist living
    the castaways medicinal guide
    the agatha christie collection
    anne of green gables
    anything written by gregory clark

    I think I may have exceeded my limit.

  10. I have to think about this some more. I'm such an avid reader it's difficult to come up with only 8.

  11. This is so difficult. I love reading, but rarely enjoy re-reading a book, no matter how well written.

    So, I would like a really good road atlas of Britain
    A beautiful historical atlas of the world
    The early 19th century handwritten recipe book which I still haven't finished deciphering, I'd enjoy the challenge.
    I would like to have a hard copy of my old blog (to remind me of home and friends)
    Dalziel's Arabian Nights' Entertainment, Illustrated Edition.
    A 'Teach yourself Italian' book.
    A beautifully illustrated history of art.
    and the large box of very old letters, written by my mother to my aunt, which I recently saved from the bonfire.
    If there really are no limits, then I'd like to think about two more for the pile.

    1. I actually enjoy re-reading well loved books many times over. I think all my list (other than the dictionary) are re-read every year.

    2. I call them my security blanket books. Needed for sickness and low times.

    3. My security blanket reads are the pile of new-to-me books which I keep topped-up and always to hand.

  12. I like to read my favorites over and over...they are like comfortable old friends. Some of them I would take include: Watership Down- Richard Adams, Down and Out in Paris and London- George Orwell, the Agatha Christie Collection, Blackberry Wine (and others)- Joanne Harris, Cat's Eye (and others)- Margaret Atwood, The Wee Free Men- Terry Pratchett, some James Harriot....I think my luggage is full! Love cold comfort farm and Albert Camus too.

    1. I forgot The Wolves of Willoughby Chase. I would turn around and go back for that one. :)

  13. I have just read Vile Bodies so that would definitely be on my list. Also I have recently read Ronald Blythe's The Time by the sea - so that too. Patrick Leigh Fermor's trilogy too and Chambers dictionary in case any crosswords came my way. I may even be able to make my own. Then I would need the complete works of John Clare - food for the soul. Sebastian Foulkes's Birdsong (I have already read it several times but I find his writing so good) and I would never be without a Times Atlas of the World.

  14. Hmmm......
    Walden - Henry David Thoreau
    Anne of Green Gables - Lucy Maud Montgomery
    Grapes of Wrath - John Steinbeck
    East of Eden - John Steinbeck
    To Kill a Mockingbird - Harper Lee
    The Shell Seekers - Rosamunde Pilcher
    The Secret Garden - Frances Hodgson Burnett
    Hannah Fowler - Janice Holt Giles
    and SO many more......
    I've just got to buy Cold Comfort Farm...I see it mentioned so often.

  15. I dropped by to return the blog visit and thank you for taking the time to comment on mine. What an interesting post to find here. I have to agree with books rather than records. Taking records assumes said desert island will have the electricity to play them!

  16. Thomas Cook's European Time Table and a blank book for writing and drawing would do me.

  17. Pookie!! I have a copy which was passed down to which some child (I fear it could have been me) has drawn their own interpretation of rabbits with wings and trails of fairy dust. It is a special book.

    I cannot imagine what my Desert Island Books would be - but maybe I would take the Bible, and find the time & motivation to read it!

    1. I'm guilty of drawing in books too. Very naughty.


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