I love wartime literature so this book was definitely for me. Nella Last's account of everyday life back then is fascinating from the cost of things, to the rationing, to her opinions of the country's leaders... and to write the way she did with bucketfuls of empathy, humour, sadness, contemplation and beautiful nostalgia is truly captivating.
This is the diary of Nella Last, Housewife, 49, which she kept religiously during the Second World War for the Mass Observation project. Charles Madge, a poet and journalist, and Tom Harrisson, an anthropologist set up the Mass-Observation project in 1937 to "record the voice of the people". Nella Last was one of 500 people from all over the UK to take part in this extraordinary national writing project.
I connected with her entries across the decades because she's writing from her perspective, not only as a housewife, but as a woman during those years. She's a go getter who comes into her own during the war years and she likes to balance that positive attitude with a peaceful, stable home life. Unfortunately, she does live with regrets and unfulfilled dreams because of the world she lives in, but she's someone who makes the best of everything, always. Creative, resourceful, never wavering. Despite suffering with terrible nerves, regularly feeling depressed within and not forgetting what she's living through (Barrow-in-Furness suffered terribly during the Blitz and was often overlooked), she's outwardly a comedian who finds the strength from somewhere to entertain the people from day to day and keep their spirits up.
I am very much looking forward to reading her Post-War Diaries now "Nella Last's Peace".
Blogging is an amazing concept so here I am giving it a whirl. You'll get words. You'll get pics. Sometimes a vid or two. You'll get tongue in cheek, the odd humble opinion and an honest insight into my travels and writing life. Maybe even a few gems along the way. I'll be musing on home turf as I see more and more of the UK and sharing my experiences further afield on holidays and adventurous trips across the globe.