This tale, which recounts Elizabeth Von Arnim's discovery of the joys of gardening in the remote German countryside, is a real breath of fresh air. Von Arnim married young to a much older German aristocrat and found herself in an alien and elite world which reeks of dryness and dust - a captive world. Clearly a free spirit, and an unconventional character, it is facinating to read of Von Arnim's liberation through the rebellious act of creating her garden. However, the story is not just about the garden. It also offers up Von Arnim's wonderful, razor sharp, and somewhat wicked observations of the stultifying aristocratic set in which she finds herself. I love, in particular, the descriptions of her almost comedically chauvinistic husband, who she laughs both with and at. Although a snob herself, and somewhat arrogant, Von Arnim recognises her own failings and is quite happy to puncture her own bubble, which helps keep the reader on her side. Her fiercely independent (for her time) nature, rapier like wit and keen intelligence are refreshing to encounter in this very well written book. Von Arnim was a successful author in her time and I think it is time her books were re-discovered by a modern audience.