a diary bound in yellow velvet is thrown in the fire

Last Christmas, I did what most charitable and seasonally minded folks do — I asked for lots of gifts. And blessing of blessings, I received them, gratefully. I shortlisted most of them and finally got round to reading Embers, which was gifted to me by Kerry of Hungry Like the Woolfe. What an amazing book! One cannot do better than read it. I dare you to try. It’s absolutely incredible, amazing, stunning, add your own superlative of choice. Because it’s a gorgeous passage and because it’s the culmination of one of literature’s most intense, enigmatic and emotionally fraught scenes, and finally because I’ll refer to it in my next post, I wanted to share this wonderful description with you. Enjoy! “With an almost lazy gesture, he throws the little book into the embers of the fire, which begins to glow darkly as it receives its sacrifice, then slowly absorbs it in a welling haze of smoke as tiny flames lick up out of the ashes. They sit and watch, still as statues, as the fire comes to life, flares as if in pleasure at the unexpected booty, then begins to pant and gnaw at it until suddenly the flames burst upwards, the wax seal is melted, the yellow velvet burns in an acrid cloud, and the pages, aged to the color of ancient parchment, are riffled by an unseen hand; there, suddenly, in the blaze is Krisztina’s handwriting, the spiky letters once set on paper by fingers now long since dead, and then letters, paper, book, all turn to ashes like the hand that once inscribed them.”

3 Responses to a diary bound in yellow velvet is thrown in the fire

  1. […] throws the diary into the embers of the fire and is […]

  2. Kerry says:


    I am thrilled you gave me the opportunity to share this work and even more thrilled that you enjoyed it. I can hardly wait for Christmas again!


  3. That’s a beautiful passage.

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