In this 60 seconds with…meet Anastasia, our new programme coordinator for Reading Friends.

What is your favourite thing about Reading Friends?

Reading Friends brings people together to celebrate friendships, community and have a good chat. I’ve always loved meeting new people so it gives me a good excuse to talk to strangers. I can’t wait to get out and visit some of the groups.

Why did you get involved with Reading Friends?

I had been volunteering with a befriending charity for the last two years. Although I didn’t have much time to fit it in around my hectic job working in Fashion, I always loved going to the groups and having a good natter. When I decided I wanted a career change, I knew I wanted to work on something similar to my volunteering as it makes me really happy. Reading Friends combines my love of community with my lifelong book obsession!

What do you like to read?

I’ve always loved books that are set in the real world but have a hint of magic. It makes me hopeful that something magical could happen to me. Some of my favourites are The Night Circus, A Year of Marvellous Ways and anything by Carlos Ruiz Zafon. I am trying to read outside of my usual genres at the moment so I need lots of book recommendations.

What is one thing you couldn’t live without?

Food! My love of food goes way beyond nutrition and my life really does revolve around what I’m going to eat next! I enjoy cooking, trying new cuisines and watching cooking shows on TV. There are some beautiful cookbooks out there which I’ve put on my Christmas list.

What is your favourite thing to do??

I love having a whole day free to explore a new city or neighbourhood. I like researching the best places to go, then going off the beaten track to find quirky shops, dusty antique stores, a good view and a cosy cafe to sit and read my book.

If you could be any fictional character, who would it be? 

I think it would be Heidi – I love being out in nature and lived in a little mountain house as a child before moving to a big city. It’s a beautiful book and I love the friendships between the young and older characters.

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Find out more about Reading Friends here, and register your interest to take part.

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