Meriel Brooke's Books - novelist and children's author


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The heart-warming account of an actress and an IBM manager who downshifted to the country from a lucrative and stressful lifestyle in London. They set up an organic smallholding of rare breed animals in Herefordshire and grew the crops to feed them. They learned the hard way how to be self-sufficient, to rear pigs, sheep, poultry and cattle, how to milk a cow and work a horse, and how to cope with life and death.

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A short extract

I had to inject the pigs myself at a later date, but I didn’t fancy going into the ark with two large pigs and a syringe, even if they were friendly, so we planned to corner them in the paddock, where Roger would trap them with a hurdle.  We cornered them without any trouble, but as soon as they saw the hurdle, they broke out to the side at high speed.  We tried again.  This time I stood astride Tallulah, stroking her the while – so far so good.
I rammed the syringe into her rump, and she took off backwards, leaving me with my legs akimbo and the syringe still in my hand!  I’ve now perfected the injection technique by waiting until feeding time, and, when they are gorging themselves, I stick the needle in.  There is a slight reaction, but they continue to eat, then I attach the syringe and quickly discharge its contents!

Read a review

"Beautifully illustrated with lots of colour photos of rural farm scenes, this book vividly brings to life the story of an urban couple who make the change in life that so many of us dream of, moving from the 'Big Smoke' of London to a country idyll, in this case, at the foot of the Brecon Beacons near Hay-on-Wye."


"Meriel and Roger have a comfortable city existence and are certainly used to the finer things in life. Roger takes early retirement from his senior management job at IBM and they decide to move. What I really enjoyed about this book was the passion Meriel and Roger have for their animals and how they strive to make their farm as self sufficient as possible."

A Customer

Brooke's Books © 2016 published by Ex-L-Ence Publishing