DOG DAYS IN THE FORTUNATE ISLANDS: A new life in hidden Tenerife

Dog DaysJohn Searancke (Matador, £9.95)

When the author and his wife Sally decided to head off to their new ‘green and pleasant land’, they were heading into the unknown. With rescue dog Freddie in tow, the couple skirted round El Teide, Spain’s highest peak, and pitched up in a modern apartment in the northern part of Tenerife, with its verdant valleys and banana plantations, a world away from the thriving southern concrete jungle that is Playa de Las Americas. On the brink of retirement, yet like ducks to water, they immerse themselves in the local life, enjoying the ups and weathering the inevitable lows as they learn a different language and make new friends. In this, his debut novel, John brings to life a collection of anecdotes and colourful characters, framed in an honest and unassuming style. It is a journey of discovery which many of us would like to take, but few of us are brave enough to try.