Friday 6 May 2011

Review: The Lace Makers of Glenmara - Heather Barbieri

Genre: Fiction
Pages: 304
Published: 2009

"You can always start again," Kate Robinson's mother once told her. "All it takes is a new thread."Overwhelmed by heartbreak and loss, Kate follows her mother's advice and flees to Ireland, her ancestral homeland, hoping to reinvent herself. In the seaside hamlet of Glenmara, the struggling twentysix-year-old fashion designer quickly develops a bond with members of the local lace-making society—and soon she and the lace makers are creating a line of exquisite lingerie, their skilled hands bringing flowers, Celtic dragons, nymphs, saints, kings, and queens to life with painterly skill. The circle also offers them something more: the strength to face their desires and fears. But not everyone in this charming, fading Gaelic village welcomes Kate, and a series of unexpected events threatens to unravel everything the women have worked so hard for.

My thoughts:
First I must say that my review is not going to give this wonderful book justice. It's just one of those books that are  so wonderfully written that I just not have enough words to express why I loved it so.

Kate designs clothes and loves to sew gets dumped by her fiancé, so she leaves for Ireland and just wanders around. She is both sad over her relationship and her mother's death. She is a bit broken and she finds solace in Glenmara. A broken town with no tourists and  people are fleeing because there is nothing to do there, but she finds wonderful friends there, Bernie who rents out a room to her and who is lonely too. And the rest of the Lace makers who all have different problems, if it's husbands, themselves or children. With each other they find a new goal in the lingerie they start to make, and they each find that they lost too. They might be older than her, but they are all women and the friendship they form is strong.

The prose is beautiful, and something as simple as them sitting there and talking still brings out everything the book has to offer. It is well written and with it's story about friendship, loss and new-found strength it makes it a story  for everyone. There is also a bit of romance hidden in the background, but even though I love romance it is the life of these women that is more important (still yay romance).

It also made me tear up, because it's not all fun and friendship. There is also jealousy and a priest that is just an ass.

Now look, I just can't bring it justice. It's just impossible. The book was lovely, and it also has these pieces of magical realism in it. It's a book you read slowly to savour all the words.

Of course I recommend this book to all. I loved it, it was wonderful and it when I finished it I was happy. This is how I want my fiction to be like. It was perfect.

And a big thank you to Anna from Diary of an Eccentric. She sent me this book, and you were so right, it was just the book for me.

Read it!


My flash fiction for the week

Happy Birthday Michelle @Michelle's Book Blog


  1. Thank you for a wonderful post.

  2. I have this book sitting on my shelf. I'll have to make time to read it!

  3. Wonderful review! I just ordered this book. It sounds like an amazing story.

  4. I'm going to recommend this to one of my friends.

  5. Wow, I love your enthusiasm for this book!

  6. I love books set in Ireland and I'm excited that the romance is subtle in this one, sometimes I like just a lovely, quiet romance mixed in with all my smexy romances:)

  7. I guess I need to read this. It also reminds me of Choclat except its with lingerie instead.

  8. This sounds good. And it's set in Ireland :)

  9. I loved this book as well! I'm glad you did too - I read it for my book club and a lot of them didn't really like it and I couldn't imagine why. I loved the whole idea of a group making things with lace - it would be such fun and so would living there be!

  10. My mom would love this -- anything Irish hooks her!

  11. Great review! I'm so glad you liked it. 'Lace Makers' was on my favorites list a couple of years ago - Loved it!

  12. This sounds like such a beautiful book, and there's something about he idea of making lace that draws me.

  13. Mystica
    It was a great book, you'd like it

    You must find the time, and since it's rather short it wont take that long

    I sure hope you enjoy it as much as I did. It was pure magic

    I hope she gets it :D

  14. Bermuda
    I am glad it shows :D I knew from the start that it was love

    I love the setting too. Oh Ireland, I have to go there one day. And the subtle romance was lovely, sometimes I do not need it the be in your face

    I can see the resemblance. You should so read it

    Win win! I love that country

  15. Darlene
    For me it's one of those books that I couldn't either think of why someone would not like it. With other book it's easier, but with this one, oh everyone should love it :)

    She is like me then, I love Ireland :D

    It's sure to make my fav list this year too :D

    It's just so wonderful, the book just has to be read to see it

  16. I will read this book if I can find it. It sounds simply lovely. Fantastic review - thanks so much!

  17. Awe! Sounds like this book had a deep impact on you. I love it when that happens. I hadn't heard of it before, but I'm loving your description of the prose.

  18. I think you managed to express your love for this book very well because you made me want to read the book :D

    Great review!

  19. Ana
    I do hope you like it if you find it *fingers crossed..double crossed*

    The prose, aww, just like it should be. I do love a good writer. Sometimes I like the story and do not care for the writing but here everything just pulled you in

    Yay, I am glad, I just wished I could have told it as eloquently as she did

  20. This is one of those books I've had on my shelves for awhile now. Your review has made me want to take it out and read it immediately!

  21. Now I wouldn't have really looked at this b/c of the cover. But... wow... the review really has me wanting to read it.

  22. Almost missed your FF.

    Love the reverse siren theme. Eerie and sad.

    You don't like HEAs do you? lol

  23. I have the book on my wishlist! I am glad that you loved it so much. It sounds beautiful! Thank you for the review!

  24. I have been wanting to read this book. After reading your wonderful review, I've got to get it now!

  25. Two reviews in a row in my reader of books I loved! This was really such a wonderful book. I don't think it has received the exposure it deserves.

    Great review!

  26. Amused
    I do hope you take it down and read it. It's just one of those lovely books that are so normal and yet so magical

    Lol, yes I seem to hate HEAs, and that is really weird since if I do not get a HEA in a book I get really mad. But these are just so much more fun to write.

    As for the cover, a book like this doesn't need a fancy one, but yes perhaps it could be more eye-catching

    Do read it, and when you do I sure hope you fall for it as hard as I did

    Yay, it is a work that deserves to be read

    I agree, it sure deserves so much more attention because it was absolutely wonderful

  27. Wonderful review! This definitely sounds just like a book for me!

  28. This sounds so good! I like the Ireland setting. Glad to hear it was wonderful.

  29. I LOOOOOOOOOOOVED this one. So glad you liked it!

  30. Irena
    I am sure you would love it too!

    I love the setting too, so highly recommended

    It was amazing :D I am so happy to have read it

  31. I love it when I read a very positive and enthusiastic review. ;)

  32. Nina
    They are sure fun to read, and write :D

  33. Oooh! I think you did a wonderful job in reviewing. The book sounds heavenly to me. I love a book with wonderful prose and an amazing setting such as Ireland.

    Thanks for the newest addition to my tbrlist! =)

    Have an awesome weekend!

  34. I haven't heard of this one before, but it sounds like a wonderful book.

  35. Wow, that sounds like a great book, I'll have to check it out!

    I'd love to have you as a follower:

  36. Redd
    Thanks, I am glad you liked the review :D And the writing, wonderful and the setting, could anything be more amazing than Ireland? :D

    Thanks for stopping by, and I do recommend the book

    You should really read it

  37. I really want to read this one! Glad you enjoyed it --thanks for the great review!

  38. I absolutely adored this one too. The only thing that could do this one justice is to be able to live it out!!

  39. I'm so glad you enjoyed the book. I really liked it, too. It was a very touching book, with a balance of light and serious moments.

  40. Lady Q
    You so gotta read it!

    It was just so wonderful, awww, just loved it

    I liked the light, and the sad. That one sad part, heartbreaking

  41. I've been undecided about this book and you made my decision easy with this wonderful review B. Thank you :)

  42. Teddy
    You must read it, I am sure you would love it too :D

  43. Your first paragraph alone made me want to read this one :-)

  44. Aarti
    Good :) Cos you know I mean it if I start like that

  45. Sounds like a lovely and interesting read. Thanks for the excellent review and I will remember to keep some tissues nearby.

  46. Jenny
    You must read it, and I am sure you would enjoy it just as much :D



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