Winter Solstice

Rosamunde Pilcher, Author
Rosamunde Pilcher, Author St Martin's Press $27.95 (454p) ISBN 978-0-312-24426-2
Reviewed on: 07/31/2000
Release date: 08/01/2000
Audio Product - 978-1-84456-097-4
Analog Audio Cassette - 978-0-553-50256-5
Compact Disc - 978-0-553-71210-0
Analog Audio Cassette - 978-0-553-52748-3
Hardcover - 806 pages - 978-0-7862-2506-4
Paperback - 978-0-7862-2646-7
Mass Market Paperbound - 504 pages
Ebook - 464 pages - 978-0-312-27771-0
Hardcover - 978-0-7540-0700-5
Hardcover - 978-0-7540-5449-8
Hardcover - 632 pages - 978-0-7540-2357-9
Paperback - 698 pages - 978-0-340-76747-4
Peanut Press/Palm Reader - 978-0-312-27839-7
Hardcover - 978-1-84032-361-0
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The author of The Shell Seekers has penned another romance sure to give fans the warm fuzzies, even though it's set in the north of Scotland in winter. Colorful Elfrida Phipps, 60-ish and single, has retired from a lifetime on the stage to a country retreat in Hampshire, England. There, she is befriended by Oscar and Gloria Blundell and their 12-year-old daughter, Francesca. Oscar, an organist, is somewhat older than his wife and the Blundells live in Gloria's family house. When Gloria and Francesca die in an automobile accident, Gloria's sons from a previous marriage inform Oscar that they are selling the property and he must leave. Elfrida persuades the grief-stricken, penniless Oscar to return to his childhood haunt, Corrydale, in Creagan, Scotland. His grandmother's grand estate is now a hotel, but the former estate manager's house is vacant and still belongs to the family. With few ties herself, Elfrida moves with Oscar to Creagan, where he plans to escape the upcoming Christmas festivities and the sad memories they will arouse. A distant relative of Elfrida's is also looking for a quiet place to spend the holidays. Beautiful, stylish 30-year-old Carrie Sutton is escaping a painful love affair. She has rescued her 14-year-old niece, Lucy, from Lucy's neglectful mother and grandmother, and the two seek asylum with Elfrida and Oscar. When handsome, successful, separated Sam Howard knocks on their homey door in a snowstorm, there is nothing to be done but invite him to stay, and the five souls from three generations find Christmas isn't so sad, after all. As her devoted readers have learned to expect, Pilcher's fond descriptions of domestic detail and her atmospheric evocation of the Scottish landscape add substance to a predictable but heartwarming plot. Literary Guild and Doubleday Book Club main selection; BOMC alternate; Reader's Digest Select Edition; audio rights to Random House. (Aug.)
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