Hooray, Cathy Kelly is back. I have read every book she has written and loved the vast majority of them. However, her last two books didn't rate that highly for me and I was beginning to wonder what had happened to this wonderful writer. Thankfully she has returned with an absolute corker of a book.
We meet the four wonderful women who are living in Golden Square. Eleanor is the first person we meet and you soon realise that Eleanor is not the normal character you would expect to find in a Chick Lit novel. Thankfully, she is the glue that holds this story together beautifully.
Eleanor is a wonderful and wise character, a woman in her eighties that has wisdom and knowledge on her side. From the very beginning we see extracts from her mother's handwritten cookery book. Only the cooker book is no ordinary book. It seems to teach valuable lessons to Eleanor who then in turn will share with the other three characters we meet.
Megan is very glamorous and having realised following her disastrous love affair had gone wrong she retreats to her Aunt Nora's home. Megan is a young and very glamorous woman who we see struggle with her grief at her loss of the man in her life she loved. Rae is the mother hen of the bunch who everybody adores and Cathy Kelly has painted a wonderful picture of her. I even got to the point where I could imagine this being made into a film. Connie is also a great character who has an air of humour about her. She struggles with her lack of sense when it comes to men and spends more time helping out others.
The story itself was wonderfully told and I adored the setting of Golden Square. The characters all had great strength without being too much, but at the same time they all had their secrets, neurosis and funny quirks. The book is a really good read and is the perfect length. I loved the way their lives all interact and there is a dose of old fashioned faith with the addition of Eleanor's mother's cookbook. This was a joy to read and I was as pleased as punch that Cathy Kelly has gone back to her (IMO) former glory. There is nothing I can criticise about this book and it was a thoroughly enjoyable read that I would highly recommend.