Reading books is an important aspect of coming to know who we are [see my post entitled ‘Reading offline’ on March 19th, 2014] and it forms a keycomponent of my deep vacation [see last week’s post]. For the last two years, we have read the books shortlisted for Baileys’ Women’s Fiction Prize [see my comment on Field of Flowers posted on July 8th, 2015] during our family vacation. Our holiday rental cottage was stocked with a large collection of second-hand books and so after the shortlist I moved onto some older novels, one of which was the ‘Lonely Road’ by Nevil Shute. Nevil Shute (1899 – 1960) was an aeronautical engineer who also wrote very successful novels, of which the most famous are perhaps are ‘On the Beach‘ and ‘A Town Like Alice’. His engineering background is often evident in his novels, particularly the pair of novels published posthumously under the title ‘Stephen Morris’. I found his novel, ‘Ruined City’ about industrial and urban regeneration, particular poignant in the current economic climate. These novels were as popular with the younger members of my family as with my generation, which leads me to suggest that they are good vehicles for raising awareness at a subliminal level about engineering. What we need are some modern authors to follow the example provided by Nevil Shute. Maybe it could be your books filling the bookshelves or tablets of budding engineers in a few years time? [see my post entitled ‘Good reads for budding engineers‘ on February 25th, 2015].