For the irrepressible Lucinda Hammond, her place behind the cash register of a run-down convenience store in Arcadia, Nova Scotia, offers a wide window onto an improbably hopeful world. For three generations the store has sustained Lucinda's family, and these three generations share the narration of this poignant, joyous novel that spans more than one hundred years. Carol Bruneau unfolds the story of Lucinda and her forebears in a trio of beautifully articulated, interwoven voices. Blunt and funny, Lucinda copes with the store's declining sales and middle-age anxiety, even as she discovers her heart racing ahead of her tongue when she's unexpectedly courted by a burly construction boss named Wilf. Aunt Ruby at ninety has fallen under dementia's sway; yet she remains utterly lucid in her own mind as she recalls her length of days and wraps herself in a wondrous quilt sewn by her mother, Euphemia. Decades earlier, this matriarch threaded hope in the quilt's purple sky, and in a weathered ledger book she recorded, alongside the store's daily receipts, her family's most surprising secrets. Rich in narrative and ravishing in its prose, this wise novel binds together the intimate testaments of its three strong women as it speaks volumes about memory, desire, and the human heart.
About Carol Bruneau
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Published May 10, 2001
by Carroll & Graf Publishers.
Literature & Fiction.