The Gentle Books of Rosamunde Pilcher

It’s been an intensely busy month for me in my new position as second grade teacher, and by the end of the day, there’s been very little energy left for reading and blogging. But things are beginning to settle down now, the routines are established, the toothless ones are working hard, and this teacher is finding her way to the heart of this new grade level (after 16 years at a different grade level!) and enjoying it very much. And in the meantime, I actually HAVE been able to finish a couple of books–both of them by Rosamunde Pilcher.

I thought I had read ALL the Rosamunde Pilchers, (my favorite one is The Shell Seekers) but made a happy discovery at the library that there were some newer ones that I had somehow missed. So, I listened to the audiobook version of Another View, have just finished reading The Day of the Storm, and am in the middle of The End of Summer.

Rosamunde Pilcher’s books are gentle reads, with characters I enjoy meeting (young and old), beautiful descriptions of Cornwall or Scotland, and are stories that focus on communication and relationships. The stories are told mostly through dialogue, and when I’m reading one I’m completely immersed in the atmosphere and the story. When I finish one, I feel that all is well with the world afterall. Pilcher’s books are comfort reads in the best sense. She’s a lovely lady who has written some lovely books that can be read and enjoyed no matter how tired or stressed you might be.

There’s a website on Rosamunde Pilcher that posts a fun and silly list called “You Know You’ve Read Too Much Rosamunde Pilcher When…” I got a kick out of some of the responses, such as:

“You wish a large storm would suddenly descend and somehow resolve all your inter-personal problems.”

“Corduroys suddenly sound attractive.”

“You name your house and use the name as your address.”

“Getting to your house includes going over the bridge, up the slope, where the drive is bordered on both sides by rhododendrons, before you reach the wide cobblestoned yard where the main house sits, overlooking the sea.”

“You go out and buy Yardley’s Lavendar soap.”

“You start craving scrambled eggs for dinner.”

22 thoughts on “The Gentle Books of Rosamunde Pilcher

  1. jenclair

    My mother used to enjoy Rosamund Pilcher, but I’ve never read her. I enjoyed all of the quotes indicating “too much Pilcher,” however, and would have no problem with any of them!

  2. Tara

    I just adore Rosamund Pilcher…I think I’ve read all her longer ‘saga’ sort of books, but have never read her shorter novels. I think I felt they might not be as satisfying. Absolutely one of my favorite comfort reads, and one of my first forays into the big, thick, English Saga Novel that I love so much.

  3. Bookfool

    Okay, now you’ve got me wishing I’d grabbed some of the Pilcher books in the library sale. Someone dropped off quite a few, but I passed them up.

    I love the way you described your students, “The toothless ones”. That is the age of gaps between teeth, isn’t it?

  4. Robin

    Hi jenclair. I do enjoy her books. They’re just plain refreshing, don’t take a huge commitment of time or effort, and have a lovely feel to them.

    Hi Tara. These are short, fast, very pleasant reads. I loved The Shell Seekers, which is much longer, but also reads fast.

    Hi Bookfool. I hope somebody bought them and is enjoying them. I gave our library most of my old copies of her books (some of her novels from the 80s) quite awhile ago, but now I’d like to reread them. Which is proof-positive that we should never get rid of any of our books…

  5. Gentle Reader

    I’ve never read Rosamund Pilcher, but my mom has a copy of The Shell Seekers, which I will have to borrow next time I see her!

    And I love “the toothless ones” too–my younger son is in 3rd grade, and his big (and I mean big) front teeth have grown in!

  6. Kay

    Glad things are going well for you, Robin.

    I used to read Rosamunde Pilcher. Haven’t read the shorter books but think I have read all the longer ones. I loved them so much! So gentle. So engrossing. Thanks for the reminder.

  7. Robin

    Gentle Reader, Isn’t it fun and funny how each age seems to have its unique feature. 2nd graders are missing two front teeth. 3rd graders haven’t grown into their new teeth yet. And 6th graders haven’t grown into their feet, which are enormous!

    Thanks, Kay. It was quite awhile ago that I discovered Rosamunde Pilcher, and first enjoyed her books. I’d like to reread The Shell Seekers, which was my favorite.

  8. cj

    I’m not sure I’d heard of her before, but I certainly have now. She sounds like someone I need to add to my list. Thanks.


  9. Maggie

    What a lovely picture of Mrs. Pilcher. She’s very gentle looking like her books. 🙂

    When I started working in our small town library The Shell Seekers was enjoying a slight comeback thanks to a local civic club. I remember reading it all curled-up in sweats and a blanket, drinking tea in my way-too-drafty old house in 1996.

    I transitioned to Martha Grimes next! 🙂

  10. mom

    The time I enjoyed Rosamunde Pilcher was a summer afternoon reading on the patio with a tall glass of iced tea. It’s been much too long since I read her. Now it’s time to get back and enjoy her novels again. You are so right, Robin, she is a “gentle read.”

  11. Robin

    Hi CJ. They’re very enjoyable reads!

    Maggie, I haven’t read any Martha Grimes, but I’ve put her on my list now! Thanks for mentioning her.

    Heather, it made me chuckle to find that list.

    Hi Mom, those memories of reading on the patio are wonderful. You read many, many books out there!

  12. Nan -

    That was the most wonderful post, Robin! She was so popular for all those years, but I fear the younger crowd isn’t reading her these days. Yet, a lot of books feature young people. It isn’t as if her characters are all Penelope’s age in the Shell Seekers. I love the picture of her you put up. I wonder how she is doing these days. Have you read her son’s books, which I’ve told many people I actually like better than hers? He is on my ‘celebrate the author’list for August with his new book. I think you’d like his writing.

  13. Robin

    Thanks, Nan. I haven’t read any Robin Pilcher, but now I’m really interested. I didn’t think he could possibly be as good as his mother, but now I’m anxious to give him a try.

  14. Les

    I absolutely adore Rosamund Pilcher. I remember when I first discovered her. I read The Shell Seekers back in 1989 or so. I loved her descriptive writing and it was the first time I consciously understood what “lyrical” writing meant. Like you, as I finished the book, I thought all is right with the world. It looked beautiful and I was happy. How interesting that you feel the same after completely one of her books!

    I love all the responses to You Know You’ve Read Too Much Rosamunde Pilcher When… I could answer “me, too” to all of those mentioned! 🙂

    The Shell Seekers remains my favorite, but Winter Solstice sure comes close to beating it out.

    Lovely post, Robin. Thank you for inspiring me to read Coming Home which has been languishing on my bookcase for far too long.

  15. iliana

    I’ve never read a Pilcher book but after your post I want to!! Aren’t comfort books the best? I feel that the older I get the more I seek these sort of books out. Glad to hear things at school are settling down.

  16. Robin

    Hi Iliana! I’m sure you’d enjoy her books…especially The Shell Seekers and Winter Solstice. I’d like to reread them all.

    Hi Karen. It’s really nice for me to discover how many other Pilcher fans are out there!

  17. Elaine

    THe Shell Seekers if one of my all time favourite books and I have read it dozens of times. also, I love Winter Solstice. they are books you can immerse yourself in and just relax and enjoy, ditto Maeve Binchy. I gave my mother (95) the Shell Seekers to read and she was bowled over by it and demanded more!

  18. Robin

    Hi Elaine. How nice that you gave it to your 95-year-old mother and she loved it as much as we did! I love reading Maeve Binchy, too.

  19. Lisa Musgrave

    Hello all, I, too, am a lover of all things Rosamunde Pilcher. As for the “You Know You’ve Read Too Much Rosamunde Pilcher When…” post, I have the complete list. Unfortunately the link is no longer available, but if anyone is interested I would be happy to copy the list, spelling errors and all.


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