Author: Elizabeth Strout
Title: My Name Is Lucy Barton
The storyline is simple. Lucy Barton, wife, mother and author, has been hospitalized for a mysterious ailment. Her estranged mother comes to visit, travelling across the country to sit by Lucy's bedside. Their conversations are light and easy. But simmering underneath their chatter are long held tensions, painful longings and family secrets. Throughout the novel it is Lucy's voice, spare, honest and compassionate, that carries the story as she relates her struggles from a difficult and lonely life to a happier one. Some novels are loud and clever. This jewel of a book is quiet, gentle and filled with wisdom.
Pairs with Sugar Plum Pudding black tea, Ninja Panther shortbread cookies and a clementine.
Author: Stephen King
The lowdown: Jamie Morton is six years old and living in small town Maine with his close-knit family when he first meets the new minister, the Reverend Charles Jacobs. Reverend Jacobs is much loved by his new parishioners until his wife and child are killed in a terrible accident and he delivers a damning sermon from his pulpit. Jamie is distraught when the pastor leaves town under a cloud. Little does Jamie know that their paths will cross several times over the course of his life. And with each encounter his life becomes darker and darker until the final cataclysmic confrontation between him and his former pastor.
A slow simmering read, chilling, with a terrifying conclusion.
I wanted something calming while reading this horror novel so I sipped Tea-K-O by Cup of Kindness, a gentle soothing herbal tea.
Book Title: The Searcher
Author: Tana French
The lowdown: Cal Hooper, a recently divorced retired policeman from Chicago wants a quiet life and a place to heal. He buys a dilapidated old cottage in a remote Irish village hoping to restore not only his new home but his soul. When a young teen asks his help to find a missing brother Cal is reluctant to get involved. But he is curious and concerned and soon finds himself investigating the dark side of a seemingly idyllic small town.
A thoughtful read, beautifully written and wonderfully atmospheric.
The right tea for this Irish tale of suspense? Jasmine green, of course!