Putting some romance back into our lives | Brief letters

Last week, my younger neighbour brought me a copy of a Mary Stewart novel from 1962 that she had found in a charity shop. Never having heard of her, she had thoroughly enjoyed the romantic novel. On opening it, I was transported back to the 1950s and 60s, when my family shared the latest Mary Stewart and Georgette Heyer books. They are treasured, calming influences in these troubled times. It’s now John le Carré downstairs and romantic novels upstairs (Why we’re falling in love with romance novels all over again, 16 January).
Jean Jackson
Seer Green, Buckinghamshire

In the 1960s, a fleet of private buses called the Gypsy Queen was based in our mining village of Langley Park, and served the area around Durham city (Letters, 14 January). My father told us that they were named in honour of the racehorse whose prize money funded the enterprise. The company motto, displayed on the front of every bus, was Non sibi sed omnibus (Not for one but for all).
Malcolm Abbs

If my energy company sent me a decent pair of wool socks in a good colour I’d be delighted (E.ON says sorry for sending socks to customers with advice to keep warm, 144 January). But cheap, white, petrochemical-based polyester with a tacky logo is another matter. Just a waste of energy, in fact.
Judith Martin
Winchester, Hampshire

The “tearless” onion has been here for a long time (Report, 11 January). It’s known as a shallot and can be used very well instead of onions in most recipes.
Neil Angrave

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