Today I am blessed by this generous & perceptive review from Anne Cater, on her blog, Random Things Through My Letterbox. Anne is also the creator of Book Connectors, arguably the best book group on Facebook for writers, readers & reviewers/bloggers.
I have been thoroughly consumed by Snow Sisters for the past week or so. It’s one of those books that pulls the reader in and never really lets go, even when you’ve put the book aside to do other things. The characters swirled around my brain, rather like the April snow storm that the author so cleverly creates as a backdrop for her incredibly beautiful story.
If like me, you are a fan of Diane Setterfield’s The Thirteenth Tale, or more recently, A Thousand Paper Birds by Tor Udall, then Snow Sisters will be your thing. There are ghosts, broken families, old secretive houses and characters who are so wonderfully imagined that you really believe in them.
Snow Sisters is an intimate and intricate portrait of one family of women. At the heart and head of the family is Grandmother Mared, and living in Gull House is Mared’s daughter Allegra and her two daughters; our Snow Sisters; Verity and Meredith. Carol Lovekin’s eye for detail with her characterisation is outstanding, these woman are real and the reader will love them, hate them, sympathise with them – whatever emotion they evoke is a testament to her skill.
Nestled between Verity and Meredith’s stories is the voice of Angharad. Angharad died in 1879 and her tragic and heartbreaking story is gently and carefully unwound during flashback snippets in her own voice.
So, not one, or two, but three threads of a story so deftly woven together. The present day as Verity returns to Gull House, and her memories and her sadnesses and her questions, and then the story of her and Meredith as children, battling their self-indulgent mother, and of course, Angharad; that poor young girl whose own personal story forms the backbone to this wonderfully imagined and gracefully executed tale.
Snow Sisters is complex and nuanced. There is tragedy yet there is so much love. This is a book to wallow in and linger over. Highly highly recommended.”
I’m also indebted to Anne for this vignette about Honno:
Honno Welsh Women’s Press was set up in 1986 by a group of women who felt strongly that women in Wales needed wider opportunities to see their writing in print and to become involved in the publishing process.
Their aim is to develop the writing talents of women in Wales, give them new and exciting opportunities to see their work published and often to give them their first ‘break’ as a writer.
Honno is registered as a community co-operative. Any profit that Honno makes is invested in the publishing programme.
Women from Wales and around the world have expressed their support for Honno. Each supporter has a vote at the Annual General Meeting.
For more information to buy Honno publications, visit the website www.honno.co.uk
Follow them on Twitter @honno