Snuggle down for a cozy read this festive season! One of my readers was in touch this morning to tell me she was sending The Chilbury Ladies' Choir to everyone she knew so that "they have a warm, witty, and intriguing page-turner to cuddle up with by the fire."
Of course, Second World War Britain wasn't quite as cozy. Heating fuel was rationed and expensive, so unless you had your own stash of firewood, keeping your winter coat on inside was the norm.
A garrison of soldiers staying in an eighteenth-century stately home went one step further: they gradually began dismantling the grand staircase to stoke the grand house's many fireplaces. The lord of the manor wasn't at all happy when he returned after the war to find it without stairs.
Favorite reading-nook treats, such as a nice cup of tea and a piece of cake, would also have been rationed. Tea became increasingly weak as the war went on, and sugar was so heavily rationed that cake was an annual treat.
So when you're cozying up with a book, remember those Chilbury ladies and relish the moment.