Gone to the heather – As we gear back up to our ‘new normal’ things are really busy right now, so as the jobs stack up and the ‘to-do list’ lengthens I’m trying to remember to incorporate Emily Brontre’s fantastic habit into my own daily routine and you should too!
When all the duties and chores got a bit much, she’d take herself off to the place she loved best – the moors to re-charge herself and seek inspiration. She’d ‘gone to the heather’. Here’s Charlotte’s quote about Emily’s habit, it explains, beautifully, just why it was so important to Emily and shows us how important it is to us today.
So get out there and go to the heather – wherever yours is….
My lovely mum bought The Vanished Bride for me, ‘it was a bit of a risk’ she said, this is because I have opinions on most things and I tend to express them quite clearly to my nearest and dearest. Mum knows how much I adore the Brontes and their work so she was a little concerned that the book would pass muster. As mum explained all this (this is the first Bronte related item she has bought for me that I have not chosen myself – EVER!), I shared her concern. Over the years, I’ve read LOTS of Bronte, Holmes and Austen related fiction and some of it can feel a bit weak. I think it’s because the original authors themselves have such clear voices and a true ability to draw you into their stories. However, Mum and I need not have worried – The Vanished Bride is a fantastic read!
The story of The Vanished Bride is written by Rowan Coleman under the pen name of Bella Ellis – A very neat Nom De Plume for a writer of Bronte fiction! The story is the first part of a collection called The Bronte Mysteries. The story is based around the Bronte Sisters and follows them as they investigate the mysterious dissapperance of a recently married bride, living across the moor from their Parsonage. The story is well paced, with a splendidly intreguing plot and it presents engaging characters, of course it does, this is Charlotte, Emily and Anne Bronte we’re talking about here and they are well observed and feel right, so well done Bella Ellis for that! The story takes much of what we know about the Brontes and their world and delicately weaves a gripping story into it.
I am not going into the details of the plot or story, as I don’t want to spoil it for you, but, it definately passed my litmus test, it’s a very scientific test and consists of two questions:
Did I binge read it? YES!
Would I read it again? and YES again!
I enjoyed The Vanished Bride so much that I was disappointed when I finished it, I really loved it and will definately read it again, once my daughter has read it – I think she’ll enjoy it too!
I recently noticed on facebook that Bella Ellis has written a second Bronte Sisters mystery called The Diabolic Bones, this time we find the Bronte Sisters investigating the horrifying and macarbre discovery of childrens bones found within the walls of Top Withens Hall, home to the ‘scandelous and brutish’ Bradshaw family. The book is due to be released in September 2020, I have it on my wish list already and I think you should too!
Finally, it must be said that I firmly recommend reading The Vanished Bride, if you haven’t read it already. Bella Ellis tells her stories with a voice as clear and true as as the Brontes themselves!
Thanks & take care
PS: There are affiliate links in this post, if you click through and then buy from the site I get a very small commission. This helps me pay for the blog expenses and my bills, so you’ll be supporting me – thank you!
For many Bronte fans & super-fans a trip to the Bronte Parsonage at Haworth is the trip of a life-time, but sadly, at present none of us can travel. So as I am really missing the Parsonage and love all things Bronte, I’ve created a kind of digital / book tour of the Bronte Parsonage & Haworth. I wanted to share with you some of the places, books, dvds and websites that are worth a visit and hold real history and importance within the lives and stories of the Bronte Sisters.
First off, lets take a look at The Parsonage Haworth – Yes, I’m starting with the obvious, but, when you visit the Bronte Parsonage, you can really take your time and absorb and notice all the wonderful little details that speak of who the Bronte family really were. As the legend of them grows, we can lose sight of them as real people, a little bit, so it is really incredible to be inside their home environment and so close to their personal belongings, that allow us to glimpse the real individuals behind the myths.
Like the Bronte Parsonage, the book – The Brontes is a fantastic insight into the Brontes and their lives, it’s written by Juliet Barker. She writes really well and was curator at the Parsonage for Six years and her book is based on first-hand research of the Bronte manuscripts and documents, it is a compelling read for any Bronte fan!
The exterior of the parsonage is really amazing, it is relatively unchanged, from when the Bronte Sisters lived there. From here we see the views and environment that the Brontes lived in and it’s really atmospheric creating a very solid impression of where their inspiration for their work came from. A visit to the church, St Michael’s that was so central to the lives of the Brontes is not to be missed and this is where the Bronte memorial can be found.
Next stop Haworth Village, not to be missed, it’s sits right on the Parsonage’s doorstep and most of the buildings that you can see and visit today were there when the Bronte Sisters lived. You can stay in the village or if you only have time for a day trip go for a quick pint or a meal at the Black Bull, it was one of Branwell Bronte’s favourite haunts, so a great place to get in touch with his character a bit. Take a quick stroll down main Street and enjoy some more of views that influenced Charlotte, Emily and Anne’s writing. Haworth History Tour and a great way to get a feel for Haworth.
The Moor & Top Withens – If you’re feeling energetic then a walk of the moors is a must. This is where all of the Brontes were at their most relaxed and they desparately loved the moor. Please be careful the moor is vast and it is remarkably easy to get lost up there, so please go with an organised tour or with an experienced guide, wear appropriate clothing and footware and take survival essentials, don’t just wander off up there. The Brontes At Haworth is a great book for planning walks and getting local history.
The Moor is a magnificent place and you can feel the sense of freedom the Bronte Sisters felt up there. If your heading to the moor, then Top Withens is a great destination to make for. It’s believed to be the inspiration for Wuthering Heights, written by Emily Bronte and it really feels like Wuthering Heights!
I know it’s the New Year and I’m sure this is the time for retrenching ones expenditure afer the excesses of Yultide, buuuuut…… it may also be the time to treat yourself, so come and check out this range of quirky gifts ideal for Bronte fans – you know who you are…..
Also they’re all designed in the Bronte’s home county of Yorkshire!
Bronte Sisters T-shirt & hoodies for all Bronte fans – a cute t-shirt featuring the names of the brilliant Bronte Sisters & their brother, it’s 100% Cotton, features a curley font and comes in a wide range of colours and sizes, you can have this design as a t-shirt or a hoody, take your pick!
Bronte sweatshirt – a very cool & comfy sweatshirt featuring the legendary literary surname, again in a range of colours and sizes. It’s the Brontes, with a sleek modern vibe!
Gone To The Heather Bracelet – a sweet bracelet featuring the phrase that defined Emily Bronte “gone to the heather” and also the inspiration for this blog. The bracelet is in Sterling Silver and comes in a range of finishes, with a choice of bracelet strap styles and lengths.
Lowood School Bag – a cool large, thick, organic cotton tote bag, featuring the phrase Property of Lowood Insitution. A really useful gift for any Bronte fan, especially Charlotte Bronte fans and Jane Eyre fans.
I hope you enjoy this selection and maybe even find a great gift for a Bronte fan! There are more Bronte gifts available, so go take a peek!
Thanks & have a wonderful day!
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