*** Note** I had originally written this review for Reedsy, of which a 5-star scale is used— which is noted below in my review.
COVID-19 has been challenging, to say the least, for most of us. Although I’m in the US, reading Tom Rickhuss’ Furlough Diaries, his daily life during the pandemic in the UK was eerily similar. His recount of the furlough is divided into 3 sections throughout 39 days; In the Beginning, In the Middle and In the End. In the Beginning he spends most of his time enjoying the newly found free time of furlough by tackling the tasks he has typically been putting off due, In the Middle, he starts to experience the inevitable case of going stir-crazy, and In the End, he’s adjusting to what is to be considered a new normal by all of us.
Furlough Diaries is a must-read for me, and easily one that I’m happy to recommend to all readers. It was easily a one-sitting read, documented it a way that I would have also enjoyed the experience of reading one daily entry at a time. We’ve all experienced challenging times due to the global pandemic and although everyone has had different experiences during these trying times, we can all relate to fearing the unknown. Rating Furlough Diaries anything less than the well-deserved 5 star rating would be disheartening for me, as the author deserves much praise for his dedication to document the challenges
I found the author’s humor throughout his entires to be delightful and so relatable. While reading, I could actually feel the same emotions he’s showcasing in nearly real-time, as I experienced nearly the same day-to-day life changes. I commend his effort throughout furlough to continue writing his daily entries, as I’m sure it was challenging, due to the mundane feelings that come along. The daily entires written by Rickhuss are not only beneficial for readers around the world, but also for himself. As life will slowly begin to return to normal, I expect it will be a humbling feeling to refer back to these entires and recall those moments where we had adjust to making due with so little while also experiencing such fear of the unknown.