I was searching for some books ten days ago and I decided to type for topics. I discovered The Lost Art of Letter Writing by Menna van Praag and I fell immediately in love for this book. I contacted the author and she answered me back with great joy.
I received a digital copy of the book and I read it very quickly. I also thank the staff of Allison & Busby for the help received.
The book is warm, very well written, and you will appreciate the wonderful writing-style used by Menna someone who loves writing letters and it's possible to seeing it because there is calm, reflection, meditation, moderation, very good times in the writing, the filters of common life and characters are portrayed with wonderful humanity, maturity, and the story doesn't suffer any rush .
Substantially the book by Menna is like reading a long, positive, relaxing letter with a lot of surprises in the middle.
Importance of letters is relevant in a society where this communication is rapidly disappearing because of the net, social networks and alternative, more instant way of communicating.
Why? Because it restores a value that it is constantly lost in modern times: privacy, discretion, sharing our thoughts just with a sender, giving to this person attention, love, consideration.
A letter's a tactile perception, thoughts and considerations written just for us or from us for some person we do care. A letter tells stories of distant places thanks to stamps, thanks to stationary, of a long trip.
It's a gem of joy, enthusiasm and reflection the book written by Menna.
Positive vibes in every page I fell in love for this book and let me add, originality is also the main thematic from the beginning to the end.
Clara lives in Cambridge and she has a precious store where she offers the chance of writing and sending letters to her customers. Of course her store is not so crowded.
A person once there asks for stationary, a pen and a desk. And then she/he writes his/her letter. Undisturbed.
Clara has a special gift: the one of understanding other people's feelings. Yes: she is magical person and strong of it, she loves to present to unknown people letters of encouragement so that their life can go on much better and will change for better.
She simply walks somewhere, after she closes her store everyday looking at the various houses and people, picking up a person in need, writing the letter as if she would know that person very well and then she sends it.
The destiny of that person is not anymore in her hands but in the hands of her letter, her words, real balm for the soul of the person taken in consideration.
The letter will be read and re-read hundreds of times since every word memorized and then life will discover a new sense again.
It's the case of Edward, for example a widow, still devastated by the departure of his beloved wife. Unemployed, devastated by this loss, he doesn't want to better his life anymore. He has a daughter, Tilly....
Clara doesn't have a man or children.
Once in the attic of her mother's house the discovery of a lot of letters written during the last second world war by her great grand-mother Marthe, the mother of her beloved grand-father, a man Clara is very affectionate at and with which she lives a profound connection although he is dead from a while. His precious pen makes her company, his legacy of letter-writing, and maybe now, her grand-dad is ready to donating her the future as well with a shocking story from the past.
A letter in fact is for her.
For telling her exactly where she is now and what it must be changed thanks to this story buried in letters written in an another language.
Clara will try to search to discover more about these letters, written in Dutch, because her family was from Amsterdam going directly in the capital of Holland.
At the same time, there are other stories where Menna will introduce us also a wonderful violinist, Finn, two women in love for him, Geer and Ava (the first is a ghost), Ross, the man who knew the souls of people.
It's also a spiritual book The Lost Art of Letter Writing where life and death are intersecated, and where the ancestors will find the answers to the protagonists, or ghosts or people passed away recently will donate new life to their loved ones, leaving them changed for better.
I am more than sure that you will find these stories tender, original and felt like the principal one: the story of Clara.
I highly recommend this book to all of you!
I thanks Menna van Praag and Allison and Busby publishing house
for this wonderful book!
Anna Maria Polidori