Painting With Words – The Unlikely Pilgrimage of Harold Fry

I’ve just finished that wonderful novel by Rachel Joyce, “The Unlikely Pilgrimage of Harold Fry.” A moving story with little gems of descriptive writing. Here’s just one of  many.

” Harold hoped to finish his breakfast before the cycling Mothers awoke, but just as he was draining his coffee they descended on the farmhouse dining room in a burst of fluorescent lycra and laughter.”

“…in a burst of fluorescent lycra and laughter.” Can you just hear and see it? Now that’s painting with words.

If you haven’t read it, get hold of it. I promise you won’t be sorry. 🙂


About Don

I love life. Sometimes it makes sense, other times not. Discerning its underlying patterns and beauty always provides great reward and meaning and is a passion I ineptly follow. I feel deeply attached to nature and love the sea with its distinct moods and colour and find walking along its beaches wonderfully inspiring. Writing, sketching and photography is a sheer joy for me and the blog is one of the places I am able to express these pursuits.
This entry was posted in inspiration, Life, Novels, Painting With Words, Reading, Writing and tagged , , . Bookmark the permalink.

22 Responses to Painting With Words – The Unlikely Pilgrimage of Harold Fry

  1. Val Boyko says:

    Gosh – thank you for the chuckle Don! I love the unexpected wrapped in humor. Such a gift!!


  2. Mary says:

    Great descriptive Don, I feel as though I’m right there at the table with them. Thanks for the recommendation.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Oh, Don, I loved this too, very moving with such flashes of humour and love. I’m looking for her new one next The Love Song of Miss Queenie Hennessy, which was reviewed in our paper recently. All the best to you 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

    • Don says:

      Thanks Sally. Yes it was so moving, yet as you say with such humour. I too am looking forward to reading The Love Song of Queeny Henessy. Enjoy your reading and thank you for your great comment. 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

  4. Hariod Brawn says:

    Coincidentally, that title has drifted across my little screen of attention a few times of late Don; perhaps I ought take your advice and read it. The problem is, every time I read one book from the pile I have of those yet to be read, two more get added to the bottom. As the old curmudgeon Arthur Schopenhauer once sagely said ‘Buying books would be a good thing if one could also buy the time to read them in; but as a rule the purchase of books is mistaken for the appropriation of their contents.’ On your recommendation Don, perhaps I ought place this title on the top of the pile.


  5. Darrel H says:

    Hi Don so glad u have read the book. I loved it so much. One of my fav of all time. Such a good writer.
    I’m looking forward to the follow up…


  6. nrhatch says:

    Thanks, Don. I’ll keep Harold Fry’s unlikely pilgrimage in mind as I read through the stack of books waiting to be read.

    Lyrical lycra + laughter => a perfectly promising painting of his pilgrimage.


  7. whimseytopia says:

    I agree with you, and everyone else, about this book. Enjoyed it so much I had my book club select it. The consensus was that it was just the light reading that everyone needed as we’d just finished Cutting For Stone.


  8. cindy knoke says:

    It is! Just wonderful! Love your blog my friend~


  9. As a cyclist who owns and wears a variety of colorful lycra, I find myself smiling. When together, we have been known to laugh at our sporting attire among other matters. It must have something to do with the endorphins.This gets added to my desired reading pile.


  10. davecenker says:

    I read this book earlier this year, and I have to say that you brought to light an aspect of the book that I didn’t even realize was there 😉 I was so hyper focused on the plot and character development, that I totally glazed over some of the beautiful language that, as you so eloquently stated, was painted with words.

    From my GoodReads review of the book, here are some thoughts I had on this wonderful story:

    I loved the delicate way in which all the character’s stories were twisted together, like different strands of rope, showed the fragile balance between sheer happiness and utter despair in one’s life. Simple occurrences can shift the fulcrum one direction or another, and the driving force behind the direction is most often how we perceive it in our minds.

    I will be honest and say, for me, this wasn’t my favorite book about a personal journey (The Alchemist is still my favorite), but it was an enjoyable story nonetheless, and one that I may want to go back and read again in order to discover some of the beautiful painting within 😉 Thanks Don!


    • Don says:

      Thank you Dave for a great and thoughtful comment. You describe so beautifully the intricate and vulnerable dynamics of the relationships in the book. I also have this feeling that I want to read it again. I sense I’ve missed certain aspects to the story I would like to unearth. Yes, I’ve read, “The Alchemist” – marvellous. Thanks again.


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