Rosamunde Pilcher (1924- 2019) wrote such worldwide bestselling novels as The Shell Seekers, September, Coming Home, Winter Solstice, and Voices in Summer. Her breakthrough novel, The Shell Seekers, written in her early sixties, sold more than 10 million copies. Pilcher also authored the photographic autobiography, The World of Rosamunde Pilcher. She was an Officer of the Order of the British Empire (OBE) and lived in Dundee, Scotland.
As this absorbing saga of a modern English family opens, 64-year-old Penelope Keeling is returning to her country house following a heart attack, and her three adult children have varying reactions to the news. The narrative is actually a series of deftly interwoven vignettes that shift back and forth in time; each chapter centers on one of the principal players in the family's history. The unifying thread is an oil painting entitled ``The Shell Seekers,'' done by Penelope's father. Pilcher's characters are well-drawn, real, and engrossing people. A thoroughly charming book for most fiction collections. Troll Book Club main selection.Maria A. Perez-Stable, Western Michigan Univ. Libs., Kalamazoo
On the heels of a hasty wartime marriage, Penelope Keeling is left to repent at leisure in the English seaside town of Porthkerris, where her artist father and her French mother are spending the duration of World War II. Safe in the embracing arms of that warm household, Penelope forgets her sour husband and takes a lover, and in that relationship, too, she weathers the war's privations and its hardest blows. In a beautifully detailed family saga that shifts effortlessly back and forth in time, Pilcher (Under Gemini) recounts Penelope's story and that of her three children. When their grandfather's work suddenly comes into vogue, Nancy, obsessed over status, and sleek Noel, adept at getting the most and giving the least, join in urging their mother to sell The Shell Seekers, a painting that gives her great joy. Only Olivia, a cool and collected magazine editor, refuses to be party to their barely concealed avarice. Pilcher's 13th book is a satisfying and savory family novel, in which rich layers of description and engagingly flawed characters more than make up for the occasional cliche. 100,000 first printing; $100,000 ad/promo; Troll Book Club main selection. (January 18)
"A HUGE, WARM SAGA...A deeply satisfying story written with love." --The New York Times Book Review"BEAUTIFULLY DONE...A book about families...When the reader closes the book, it is with a sense of regret-- regret that there is no more." --Boston Herald"A LOVELY STORY, the best, really absorbing book I've read in a long time, the kind you hate to put down and especially hate to finish." --Atlanta Journal & Constitution