May Rosevere has reached the grand old age of one-hundred-and-ten, thanks to several slices of toast with butter every morning, a glass (or two) of port, and the wonders of the Cornish sea air – or so she tells everyone.
But there’s much more to May than her remarkable age. She has a secret. One that no one has ever discovered …
My reading experience:
Firstly I would like to thank Netgalley, the author and publisher for my free ARC.
This is a delightful story.
It begins by our protagonist, a lady of 110 years called May, introducing herself. She has a very strong desire to have her 111th birthday for reasons we discover later. She is practical and calls it how she sees it so not everyone is enamoured with her and the feeling is mutual. She has a steady routine that keeps her spritely but it has nothing to do with the port and brandy she tells everyone else. May can sense the power of memories and it is this power that fuels her verve. On the brink of running out of memories her neighbour Julia unearths a treasure trove of letters and invites May to tea. This just happens to be, as it can be with so many people, the start of a lovely friendship.
The story is written so that it flows easily, the reader is guided into the growing bond between May and Julia and the love affair between Emily as Andy. It has small-town charm, magical realism and the themes of grief, loss, guilt, love, betrayal, loneliness and friendship.
I highly recommend this lovely book for Book Clubs and lazy afternoons, and I thoroughly enjoyed reading it.
Food for thought from “Book club questions”:
- How important is it to hold on to our precious memories? Does the sort of memory loss that often comes with advanced age have to be a major problem?
- What is your own most treasured memory? What would you do if someone tried to ‘harvest’ it?