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"The Cunning Woman's Cup" by Sue Hewitt

"When Alice McCleish’s gardener Brian unearths an object of great archaeological significance deep under the compost heap it is not only Alice who is affected. Her friendship with Margaret Allerton, retired Professor of Anthropology, as well as Alice's family, friends and neighbours are all touched. 

Alice and Margaret find themselves questioning long-held beliefs about the material and spiritual world that surrounds them. Both women find their lives transformed unalterably by their newfound companionship. Serendipity puts Alice’s nearest neighbour, the troubled Violet Turnbull, in touch with the enigmatic Avian Tyler, whose mystical ‘gift’ offers Violet a promise of liberation.

All the while an echoing voice from long, long ago hints at the history of the locality dominated by the standing stone circle that bestrides the skyline above the small community of Duddo. This harrowing story reveals the provenance of the artefacts found beneath that compost heap."

Amazon tells me that I downloaded this Kindle Unlimited book on the 7th March this year. I started reading the book on the 1st September. This happens frequently!

For whatever reason, I left it half a year before I read this book. Of course, most people wouldn't remember the blurb so I had no idea what the book was about and I fumbled my way through the early pages, wondering what the plot was. If I had remembered the blurb, I would have known where the story was leading.

But the blurb wouldn't really give me an idea of the magnitude of this book.

As I continued reading, I watched as carefully woven threads interlinked, one after another, so discretely that I didn't realise until the masterpiece was unveiled. The author links one life to another, developing characters using realistic phrases and idiosyncrasies so that we feel we know them as friends.

Throughout the book, the author teaches us about life and morals. She teaches us to always have an open mind, to reach out to others, and how kindness and affection can alter a person's pathway. They say a character should go on a personal journey through a novel. With so many characters, it can be very difficult to achieve this but Sue Hewitt makes it look like a walk in the park!

While there are some heartbreaking moments in the book, truly heartbreaking, the characters work together to overcome the obstacles. Towards the end, we realise that there were unseen forces at work, both good and bad, to bring about certain events.

I'm sure that throughout the next few days, I will think back to this remarkable book, and remember something new.

Sue Hewitt has something special with her writing.


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