Review By Don Sloan
It’s Evensong in a tiny village in the U.K. A flower garden competition has just concluded, and Winnie confides to her husband, Frank, that all the glory of coming in first place should go to him — even if he is dead.
This, the opening chapter in a tightly woven series of vignettes, is a subtle tale of love and loss, indicative of the wide range of emotions that will be triggered in the reader as this fine collection is consumed, like an assortment of delicious Garibaldi biscuits at afternoon high tea.
Andrew and Yvonne, married — but not to each other — make afternoon love at an abandoned RAF air base in the nearby countryside. And suspicions swirl around the Summer Fete as a number of villagers decry machinations to maneuver activities and participants to the best advantage of a local few.
Things really heat up late in the book, however, when violence erupts in Flowers Estate. Everything is sorted out, though, just in time for an unlikely reunion at the Lion pub. Emotions run high over the arrival of a tall, handsome stranger — though things end well enough.
This is a charming little book that captures perfectly the innocence of rural British life as old-world traditions collide with some of the newer twenty-first century technology. Hint: among other events, the Lion creates a Facebook page for itself. Just imagine!
Five stars to Summer to Autumn. Hopefully, there’s a sequel in the works.
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