The Sweet Remnants of Summer

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I adore this series. Having followed (and loved) the work of this brilliant and prolific author for decades, it is this series in particular – Isabel Dalhousie, her essential “goodness”, and her gorgeously-welcoming literary world – that has earned a very special place in my heart.

An indulgence of the highest order – sinking into this story is akin to revisiting a time, place, mindset and community, so impossibly comforting and reassuring, that there is no doubt but that “the world is a better place for its presence.”

Softly-insulated in much the same manner of a sweet romance, or a cozy whodunnit mystery – Isabel Dalhousie, philosopher, wife and mother, goes about her days thinking about people and motivations, and intentions – weighing in with her careful (and non-judgmental) analysis as she observes, navigates (and sometimes sets straight) misalignments in the world around her.

Financially privileged (but certainly not arrogant), Isabel has two young sons, and is in a sweet and caring relationship with her beautiful spouse Jamie, who is much younger than her, and a musician (and quite possibly, as Isabel reflects, “everything any woman could possibly want in a man”).

An absolute joy, Isabel herself, is, in a word – perfection. A lovely lady, prone to tangential musings and meanderings, Isabel gently tackles decidedly thorny and sometimes mysterious issues, in her quietly intellectual way “spending half her waking hours thinking about how we are to live our lives”, serving as editor (and owner) of the somewhat erudite “Review of Applied Ethics” – and a large portion of the remainder applying her talents to the troubling problems she sees around her in everyday life and love.

From her comfortable Edinburgh-based circle of art galleries, tea rooms, concerts and committees, Isabel cannot help but help people, “interfering” in their lives to offer ideas and solutions to complex problems – albeit only on request, and always with the very best of intentions.

In this story, as Isabel brings her considerable rationality to bear on situations including a call for help from an estranged family, a toddler with an propensity to bite, her temperamental housekeeper, a potentially nepotistic orchestral appointment, and the always (fascinating and) troubling nature of her niece Cat’s love-life, it’s clear this author has found the key to capture and connect with “the something precious in each and every one of us”.

For this reader, a journey (and a series) one can but hope, that is far far from ending.

A great big thank you to NetGalley for an ARC of this book. All thoughts presented are my own.


This Post Has 2 Comments

  1. Vicki McCuaig

    I adore his No.1 Ladies Detective series and now I just HAVE to get started on this one; your gorgeous review has me salivating to meet Isabel Dalhousie!

    1. Terri

      She’s my absolute favorite – I hope you get a chance to read her soon, and I so hope you agree!😍

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