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The Unlikely Pilgrimage of Harold Fry - now the book club thread!

(132 Posts)
dahlia Sun 07-Apr-13 20:45:09

This may have been covered elsewhere - sorry in advance if this is the case. I've just finished "The Unlikely Pilgrimage of Harold Fry" and found it the most unusual and moving book. I'm sure other Gransnet members have enjoyed it too. It's a long time since I was moved to tears more than once by a book, which at the same time was also funny in parts. Has anyone else read it?

grannymary Fri 17-May-13 22:59:04

Received my copy on Thursday also, thank you Gn. Couldn't resist starting it straightaway and I was hooked. Looking forward to a quiet weekend reading

j08 Fri 17-May-13 23:15:49

Excellent start! A verse of my favourite hymn on the front page!

#truevaloursee. smile

Ana Fri 17-May-13 23:17:39

You won't be disappointed, jingl. Wonderful book...I was sorry to have to finish it!

numberplease Sat 18-May-13 16:14:55

My copy arrived this morning, thank you GN. Am reading something at the moment, but will look forward to starting it very soon.

whenim64 Sat 18-May-13 17:06:05

I'm half way through it. Such a wonderful book!

Stansgran Sat 18-May-13 18:02:36

I'm with Tegan on the deck shoes. It bothered me all the way through. I really enjoyed the book although I felt it plots impetus when he reached the nursing home. But a good read.

Ana Sat 18-May-13 18:21:37

I don't think he ever had them re-soled, though, did he? He just kept winding duct tape round them! grin

Ana Sat 18-May-13 18:22:58

Stansgran - I felt the story was meant to lose impetus when he reached the nursing home.

Maggiemaybe Sat 18-May-13 19:02:00

I loved this book and just couldn't put it down until I'd found out how it all ended for Harold and the others. I found it moving, funny and very English, if that's possible with its shades of Forrest Gump! My only disappointment was the way Harold picked up pace as he passed through Northern England. The descriptions of the Southern towns and countryside on his journey were so detailed and well written, and I was looking forward to seeing what he made of Yorkshire, Durham etc. Well he didn't - he picked up speed and fair dashed through the grim North towards the book's end. I'd like to ask Ms Joyce why this was - did she realise she'd spent too long on the journey so far and had to speed it up, or did she think it was grim up North and just not fancy the research trip? smile

Tegan Sat 18-May-13 19:04:49

I'm sure he took them to a cobblers and had them resoled [you can actually have that done, I think, but I'm sure they'd have to be sent away]. And you couldn't realistically walk that far without proper footwear. And he wouldn't be able to wind duct tape round them without having a pair of scissors [have you ever tried to cut duct tape or even carry it with you without it sticking to everything]. And he kept washing his clothes and they'd be dry overnight [not possible]. I can cope with things like that in, say, Lord of the Rings [didn't , for example, worry about how they travelled all through Middle earth without a change of undies] but this wasn't the sort of book that I could do that with. [I know I'm really anal sad...]

Ana Sat 18-May-13 19:11:02

Well...I'll just stick with my suspension of belief for those bits, Tegan - in fact I'm pretty sure he'd have been hospitalised before he got further than halfway in real life...confused

j08 Sat 18-May-13 19:27:37

Are there any spoilers going on here?! #onlyjuststartedit

Tegan Sat 18-May-13 19:35:33

I know what you mean; I'm desperately trying to avoid anything about Broadchurch [haven't seen it yet] but every time I turn on the telly they seem to be interviewing someone about it. Was channel hopping the other night and I just caught Olivia Colman saying 'I was hoping it would be...' before I managed to switch off. Which isn't quite as bad as someone complaining about Richard Madely mentioning the fact that the Titanic sank before they'd seen the film confused.

j08 Sat 18-May-13 19:37:30

grin - about the Titanic "spoiler"!

Ana Sat 18-May-13 19:44:34

Sorry folks! (But Tegan started it...grin)

Tegan Sat 18-May-13 19:50:14


Tegan Sat 18-May-13 19:50:41

...slinks away to watch Eurovision blush...

Maggiemaybe Sat 18-May-13 19:54:38

Likewise, Tegan. Sorry folks. blush

Stansgran Sat 18-May-13 22:58:49

GrandmaH its Wendy jones for the book you mentioned . I downloaded it for my hols and couldn't find it. Thanks for reminding me.

ItsOnlyNan Sun 19-May-13 10:26:18

I got this on audio a couple of months ago - fascinating - loved it. smile

JillMay Sun 19-May-13 10:57:22

My copy was waiting on my return from holiday. Looking forward to reading it. Many Thanks.

Grandmanorm Sun 19-May-13 14:27:09

My copy arrived yesterday, thank you. After reading some of the comments I think I shall just start reading it straight away. I often have two or three books on the go at once as it save me going up (or down) stairs if I have forgotten the book.

rozzo55 Sun 19-May-13 15:35:00

Thanks for my freebie, Gransnet. At first found it hard to get into the minutiae of Harold's life. Mind you, I had just finished Herman Koch's The Dinner- an intriguing & eventually very fast moving account of family members' differing approaches to a dreadful moral dilemma.shock[recommended.]
Now happy with Harold's gentle pace & realisations. Planning to recommend it to my book

mrsmopp Sun 19-May-13 23:56:36

Delighted with this book, characters well drawn; the book is very easy to read and I am whizzing through it because I want to see what happens when Harold reaches the end of his journey.
It is sensitively written, amusing in parts and also very funny in parts too. It would make a good movie too I think.
Who could we get to play Harold? Any suggestions?

Gorki Mon 20-May-13 07:58:21

Many thanks for my copy GN which arrived on Saturday. Have read one chapter so far but am now going back to bed to read another before getting dressed !. I like the look of it a lot.