People and Places by Cathy Penman is a series of short pieces about twenty people the author has met and twenty places the author has visited.
The book is written in a conversational style so it comes across as autobiographical, and makes for an interesting read.
I really enjoyed the descriptions of people the author has met, they all became vivid characters after reading each description. It also inspires the desire to pay more attention to others as you go about your day. I think we all have those people we won’t ever forget, but it is interesting how much detail the author remembers about each of those she has written about.
The second section about places reads more like a travelogue and if you like reading about different places this will appeal just as much. I enjoyed reading about the places I have also visited, and also some that I would find interesting to see myself.
I started reading People and Places one evening and have read it right through in three days. I found the author’s style of writing and the nature of the book made it a relaxing thing to read and become absorbed in; I had a sense of almost the kind of escapism you feel when watching a film.
I would recommend this book to anyone who enjoys non-fiction, particularly autobiographical and travel writing. Also to anyone who enjoys dipping in to short pieces of writing as this book is a great one to pick up when you have a few minutes reading time.
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