Review: Tour Stop: The Lace Makers of Glenmara by Heather Barbieri

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Title:The Lace Makers of Glenmara
Author:Barbieri, Heather
Publisher:Harper Perennial
Pages:304

0061721557.01._SX140_SY225_SCLZZZZZZZ_ Goodreads: “You can always start again,” Kate Robinson’s mother once told her, “all it takes is a new thread.” Overwhelmed by heartbreak and loss, the struggling twenty-six-year-old fashion designer follows her mother’s advice and flees to her ancestral homeland of Ireland, hoping to break free of old patterns and reinvent herself.

She arrives on the west coast, in the seaside hamlet of Glenmara. In this charming, fading Gaelic village, Kate quickly develops a bond with members of the local lace-making society: Bernie, alone and yearning for a new purpose since the death of her beloved husband, John; Aileen, plagued by doubt, helplessly watching her teenage daughter grow distant; Moira, caught in a cycle of abuse and denial, stubbornly refusing help from those closest to her; Oona, in remission from breast cancer, secretly harboring misgivings about her marriage; Colleen, the leader of the group, worried about her fisherman husband, missing at sea. And outside this newfound circle is local artist Sullivan Deane, an enigmatic man trying to overcome a tragedy of his own.

Under Glenmara’s spell, Kate finds the inspiration that has eluded her, and soon she and the lace makers are creating a line of exquisite lingerie. In their skilled hands, flowers, Celtic dragons, nymphs, fish, saints, kings, and queens come to life, rendered with painterly skill. The circle also offers them something moreā€”the strength to face their long-denied desires and fears. But not everyone welcomes Kate, and a series of unexpected events threatens to unravel everything the women have worked so hard for. . . .

Barbieri takes us on a beautifully written journey through a woman’s pain and grief on her way to contented happiness. I have an affinity for Ireland and I love any book that gives you a glimpse into the daily lives of the inhabitants. Especially of the country and small village variety. These women in Glenmara have had their own share of suffering but have found an interesting way to deal with it.

The characters are fleshed out and brilliant. You can’t help but to love each of them and want them to succeed in every way. I think a lot of women whether they have the same hardships as Kate or not will have a great time reading her through her journey.

This book is as beautiful and full of twists and turns as Ireland is herself. I think it should be mandatory reading for this summer. Go get your copy!

I reviewed this book for a tour being hosted at TLC Booktours. To see the rest of the reviews and schedule just click the link!

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9 Responses so far

  1. Gravatar

    I’ve been looking at this one for a while– something about the cover catches my eye. I’m glad to know that the content is good as well, even though I can’t imagine catching up on my books enough to actually read it.

  2. Gravatar

    Nice review. It was one of my 2009 favorites!

  3. Gravatar

    Laura: It’s here if you ever get time!

    Mary: It is a beautiful piece of brain candy.

  4. Gravatar

    I read this last year and really admired the way the women banded together to be a support system. Usually, that sort of stuff can be over done and campy, Barbieri did it well.

  5. Gravatar

    I have a thing for Ireland myself, and this sounds like a great read. Thanks for the suggestion.

  6. Gravatar

    I loved this one, too – definitely looking forward to reading more of her work!

  7. Gravatar

    I read this one right before school let out, and it was one that I started and then couldn’t put down until I’d read it from cover to cover. I grew up watching “The Quiet Man,” and although this is in a modern setting, it had some of the Irish charm hanging about it. Loved your review, and agree heartily.

  8. Gravatar

    I’m happy to hear this book is well written. I’ll be reviewing it next month.

  9. Gravatar

    “I think it should be mandatory reading for this summer.” Now that is a glowing recommendation! I can’t wait to read this one for myself – anything that brings me back to my travels in Ireland is a winner in my book.

    Thanks for being a part of the tour!

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