One of the most common comments I get from readers of this book is that my enthusiasm for the country reminds readers of what they love about Romania, and so many wonderful aspects that they’d forgotten.
It’s not a sentimental book, but it seems to prompt strong sentiments
in those who read it.
“This candid and engaging book is nothing less than a love letter to Romania. Fleeing from a colourful British city to a half-built wooden house on a hillside in the Carpathian mountains, eight kilometres from a shop and a world away from her busy life as a writer and journalist in Liverpool, could have been a disaster. In her fifties, with no steady income, no pension and no Plan B, she was quizzed by her new neighbours and every Romanian she met. Why? How? … and alone? Triggered by a spate of family funerals, the truth behind her flight from England had its roots in a troubled childhood. Everything suggested she’d fail. Instead, she found the secret of happiness in Transylvania.
“In a deeply personal account of her mutation from urbanite to happy Carpathian recluse, Arabella reveals the magic of rural Transylvania in a way that will melt the heart of every Romanian.”
I’m a British writer who moved from Liverpool to Magura (near Bran in Romania) in 2010. Born and bred in West Sussex, I moved to London when I was 19 and lived there for 11 years, then in Liverpool for the following 20.
There was a decade of business journalism, but I quit my role as magazine editor at the end of 2000, and not quite a year later published my first book Liverpool: the first 1,000 years. In 2003 came my first children’s book – illustrated by 30 local kids, with a free copy given to 20,000 children. In all I’ve written nine books and published another half a shelf.
In 2005 I’d had several family funerals in 14 months, beginning with my sister and ending with my mother, and the effect was to turn my brain to cotton wool. Unable to work or make a decision, the only thing to do was sell everything and move to Transylvania.