Best Book Publishers UK | Austin Macauley Publishers
Little Orange Nightbook-bookcover

By: Martin Kyrle

Little Orange Nightbook

Pages: 216 Ratings:
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Written in the first person, these stories are designed to be read in bed just before you go to sleep. The way to enjoy this book is to follow the author’s intentions: read one letter each night, put in your bookmark, firmly resist the temptation to turn the page and read the next one, switch off the bedside light and go to sleep. That way you have nighttime reading – hence the book’s title – for a month, more or less, and at quiet moments during the course of each day you can, if you so fancy, speculate about what’ll be on the reading menu tonight: which country you’ll be transported to, and whether he’ll be telling you about something which happened to him last year or half a century ago. To read it straight through would be the equivalent of ordering a three-course meal of, say, tomato soup, poached salmon with a side salad followed by chocolate fudge cake with hot sauce – and then putting them all on the same plate and eating the mixture with a spoon. Of course, it’s a free country. But courses are served separately so that different flavours may be enjoyed.

If you’re now sufficiently intrigued, turn to page one and the Introduction.

During the course of a long life, Martin Kyrle has done a fair bit of travelling, mostly for pleasure. Apart from crossing Mongolia after several weeks on the Trans-Siberian Railway (see inside front cover), few of the places he’s visited may be classed as exotic, but catching ferries to islands off the coasts of France, Holland or Estonia or in his twenties hitch-hiking the length of Norway and coming home through Lapland has taken him to locations few people will be familiar with.

This collection of anecdotes runs alphabetically not chronologically and can be read in any order. Each letter begins with a map, an arrow and a flag offering a clue to where you’re being taken. Next day, speculate where you’re off to tonight. It may be with his wife fifteen years ago or with a student friend back in the 1950s long before mobile phones existed and when at every frontier passports were stamped and a different currency was needed.

The stories are designed to be read last thing at night, and the postscripts (for which, perhaps, read ‘silly jokes’ – but some of them entirely original!) are added just for fun to help the reader go to sleep with a smile on his or her face.

Although offered as entertainment, at times some serious analysis is woven into the narrative or an observation is made which is redolent of the times. Something, perhaps, to ponder next day while anticipating the itinerary of tonight’s letter.

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