Pengwern Books hosts international authors

Shrewsbury’s last independent bookshop is celebrating Independent Booksellers Week with two prestigious book events involving internationally published authors.

      On Saturday June 28 Mike Horwood will be at Pengwern Books, in Fish Street, to talk about his latest book ‘Arthur’s Eventful Weekend’ published by London and Shrewsbury-based Ward Wood Publishing.

     On Wednesday July 2 the writer and broadcaster Paul Evans will read and perform extracts from his latest book ‘Herbaceous’ in a ‘Meet the Author’ event staged in the gardens of Edge Villa, at Edge, Yockleton.

     Paul, who lives in Much Wenlock, is also an award-winning playwright but is best known for his ‘Country Diary’ in The Guardian newspaper and various natural history programmes and drama-documentaries for BBC Radio 4.

     His new book ‘Herbaceous’, published by Little Toller Books, is a series of beautiful vignettes taking readers on a journey of words through the life cycle of herbaceous plants throughout the year and the impact played by climate change.

     Paul spent many years as a gardener working in rose nurseries, graveyards, historic gardens in Wales and a botanical garden in New York. He is also a performance poet and nature conservationist who holds a PhD in philosophy and is currently a lecturer at Bath Spa University.
     Tickets for the ‘Herbaceous’ event, starting at 6.30pm on July 2, are available at £10, including a light supper, from Pengwern Books on 01743 232236.

     Ward Wood Publishing, which has recently relocated part of its operation from London to Shrewsbury, has previously published Mike Horwood’s novel The Finn’s Tale and his poetry collection Midas Touch.

     Tickets for ‘Arthur’s Eventful Weekend’, starting at 6.30pm on June 28, are £3. Pengwern Books will also feature special offers and voting details on titles shortlisted for the Booksellers Book Wards 2014 as part of Independent Booksellers Week June 28 to July 5.
     “We’re very excited about hosting these two wonderful authors. To be able to stage Paul’s reading and performance in the stunning gardens of Edge Villa is very special. We’re grateful to Mrs Chris Neil, National Garden Scheme county organiser, for inviting us,” said Pengwern Books founder Susan Caroline.

     Herbaceous is the first book in a new series of monographs, published by Little Toller, celebrating the very best in contemporary nature writing. A cross between New Naturalist and King Penguin, the series invites a wide range of authors and artists to choose a particular building, plant, animal, person or landscape, and through this object of fascination tell wider stories about rural life in the British Isles.

    Herbaceous follows the colour pulse of plants throughout the year. Using prose and poetry Paul explores the changing world of wild flowers, garden perennials, herbs and weeds and our cultural responses to them and the effects of climate change.

     “They are vignettes that come from experience, observation and dreams, a literary way of working with plants, gardening with words, a cultural response to climate change and the loss of species and habitats that are the trauma of ecological change,” he said.

“There needs to be more than a scientific way of describing what’s happening in the world, the what if scenarios and how we respond to change creatively.

“Throughout history humans have viewed the seasons in terms of our relationship with plants. As those change we look to things that we still understand, the plants that have significance for us.”


Pete White Pete White

Love Shrewsbury editor and chief developer at The Web Orchard, find out more on

Read More from Pete White