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12 of 13 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Her best yet - an absolute must read
I've enjoyed all Rosy Thornton's books so far but I have to say that Tapestry of Love is my favourite by quite a way. There is always warmth and empathy in her novels - for family, for people and places - but Tapestry of Love for me, was on a different level to the others. Essentially, Tapestry of Love is about a divorced Englishwoman moving to the rugged Cevennes...
Published on 29 Jun 2010 by Daisy

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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Interesting novel set in a rarely explored area of France
Take away the setting in the rural Cevennes in southern France and you're left with very little. The real character here is the environment, which the author beautifully describes. The plot is ok-ish.
Published 10 months ago by S Winspur


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12 of 13 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Her best yet - an absolute must read, 29 Jun 2010
This review is from: The Tapestry of Love (Hardcover)
I've enjoyed all Rosy Thornton's books so far but I have to say that Tapestry of Love is my favourite by quite a way. There is always warmth and empathy in her novels - for family, for people and places - but Tapestry of Love for me, was on a different level to the others. Essentially, Tapestry of Love is about a divorced Englishwoman moving to the rugged Cevennes mountains and discovering new relationships and a new way of life. I could feel the bitter Cevennes wind and the summer heat, smell the earth, taste the cooking (there's a lot of cooking and nurturing in this book.) The characters are as ever, finely drawn but to me, more vivid, more alive and more sympathetic than those in her earlier novels. There is also a beautifully developed romance and some surprises I never saw coming... but to say more would give away spoilers.

I know this was my favourite Thornton novel because it made me really *feel* - and that doesn't happen to me very often when I read books these days.
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7 of 8 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars SO glad I now know who Rosy Thornton is!, 9 Aug 2010
By 
Best Crime Books "Best Crime Books" (London, UK) - See all my reviews
(TOP 500 REVIEWER)   
This review is from: The Tapestry of Love (Hardcover)
Okay, firstly I have to say that I am usually of the `trashier the better' kind of attitude. If I am reading Chick Lit, I love the sleaze and glamour of it all. On the other side of the fence, I love a good crime thriller where we see the regular cop heroes turn up at every given opportunity. However, this book certainly doesn't fit into the Chick Lit genre and I would be at a loss as to where to place it. It is a `real' book, that's the best way I can describe it. There is no gush, no fairytale typical storylines, and certainly no murders!

Rosy Thornton has managed to produce a book that doesn't just tell you a story; it parks your butt on a plane and actually takes you there. Her style of writing is unusual in comparison to what I am used to but it is brilliant all the same. I could almost imagine myself sitting in the corner of Catherin Parkstone's kitchen in the Cevennes Mountains and actually watching her life unfold. The characters are written really well and there is such an element of realism that you find yourself swept along with the tale. The scenery is so well described that it has left a vivid picture in my imagination of what everything and everybody should look like.

The story itself was great too and we meet Catherine's local neighbours, who are at first very `French', making Catherine have to work a lot harder to become part of the community. Catherine's sister Bryony makes an appearance in Cevennes after making a radical decision to take a sabbatical from work. This complicates Catherine's life more than she cares to admit. She struggles to get her priorities in her head the right way round. Although both her children are grown up she finds herself constantly worrying about whether they will be okay and whether moving to this remote part of France was a good idea after all.

The book is structured so that we see her time at her home progress over a number of months which makes it so much easier to imagine the different times of year in this area. It also gives the reader the element of how far she has come and what the future will hold.

All in all this was a fantastic book. I will admit that I would never have chosen this from a bookstore as it doesn't look trashy enough for me, but boy am I glad I read this. A wonderful book with a real touch of realism that is perfect for curling up with. I would highly recommend this book and Rosy Thornton will definitely be added to my list of authors to pre-order from.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Interesting novel set in a rarely explored area of France, 26 Jan 2014
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This review is from: The Tapestry of Love (Hardcover)
Take away the setting in the rural Cevennes in southern France and you're left with very little. The real character here is the environment, which the author beautifully describes. The plot is ok-ish.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Easy reading, 24 Dec 2012
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Quite enjoyed this but could see the ending when only half way through and it was a bit predictable. Storyline was a bit different up to that point, which meant I did find it a good, if easy, read.
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4.0 out of 5 stars The Tapestry of Love, 10 July 2010
By 
Damaskcat (UK) - See all my reviews
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I have read all of Rosy Thornton's novels and I think this is the best yet. Catherine goes to live in France near the small hamlet of St Julien in the Cevennes. She can speak French and she very soon becomes a part of the community. The locals leave her gifts of food on the doorstep and she is quickly on visiting terms with most. She sets up her own business making soft furnishings and doing tapestry work - which presents its own problems with officialdom. Soon after moving she meets the fascinating Patrick Castagnol and her sister Bryony, a high powered lawyer, comes to visit.

I loved the descriptions of the scenery and the everyday village life and people. Catherine herself is an interesting character and the rivalry between her and her sister is well done and believable. Catherine has her problems - a desire for independence and her own space which makes it difficult for her to accept help, a nagging feeling she hasn't visited her mother in England when perhaps she should have done. She worries about her daughter Lexie who seems to be flitting between jobs at an alarming rate and she worries about her ex-husband, Graeme though less so about her son, Tom.

This is a book to sink into on a summer's afternoon with a glass of wine - French of course. It transports you to a different world though not one where everything is sunshine. There are heavy rainstorms and thunder and lightning which always knock out the electricity. In summer it is too hot during the day and work is best done at night. People die and others are born. But this is life lived in the slow lane and the emphasis is on everyday events. The writing is subtle and understated - and all the better for being so. I really enjoyed reading it and would recommend it to anyone who likes such authors as Erica James or Mavis Cheek.
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2 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Loved it..., 7 April 2011
By 
Welsh Annie (Wetherby) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: The Tapestry of Love (Paperback)
What a lovely little pleasure this book was - like having a warm bath and cuddling up in your pyjamas! The Cevennes mountains and their nature and life is vividly described, as Catherine captures it in her tapestries, and you share her joy at the dipper in the river and the family of wild boar. You plant her vegetables with her and nurture them, you share her concern when a neighbour brings her a swarm of bees, you want to fight alonside her as she tries to set up her business while battling French bureaucracy... and you laugh and cry with her as she gets closer to her wonderful elderly neighbours. But this is fiction, so there's also the enigmatic Patrick Castagnol with the mysterious past and the culinary skills of Novelli - ooh, there's a lot of wonderful food and drink in this book too - and the sister Bryony who seriously gets in the way. Really loved it... no clever stuff, not even any time slipping, just a pleasure of a read...
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2 of 3 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars A beautiful love story set in the glorious French countryside, 22 Feb 2011
This review is from: The Tapestry of Love (Paperback)
The Tapestry of Love is a beautiful story set in the French mountains. Rosy Thornton paints the scene so beautifully that you almost feel like you're there with the main character, Catherine, sitting on her cottage doorstep looking out over the beautiful French landscape. How I would love to live in that cottage with those fabulous views!

Catherine is a charming character and very artistic, which she brought out in her tapestry and upholstery work. She moved out to France with the idea of a fresh start and had decided to use her seamstress skills as the basis for a business run from the cottage. As someone who also stitches, I enjoyed the insight into Catherine's restoration and tapestry work. I liked how strong and down to earth Catherine was and her sense of humour came through on many occasions. I also enjoyed her enthusiasm for the countryside around her - her longing to see the wild boar and her excitement when she eventually did.

Catherine is a divorcee with grown children, Lexie and Tom, who also regularly appear in the story along with Catherine's younger sister, Bryony. Bryony is Catherine's opposite - very sassy and opinionated and I really loved the chapters which she appeared. We meet a myriad of other characters during the story, mostly Catherine's neighbours and one in particular, Patrick Castagnol, a handsome and secretive man who Catherine likes more than just a little!

The Tapestry of Love is a relaxing love story moving along at a much slower pace to my usual reads and it was a nice change. A well written and enjoyable read.

This is an adult book and not suitable for a younger audience due to a couple of mild sex scenes and the very occasional swear word.
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2 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The Tapestry of Love, 15 Oct 2010
This review is from: The Tapestry of Love (Paperback)
The cover picture on Rosy Thornton's new novel, The Tapestry of Love, is beautiful - one of the finest I've seen, and if there's a competition for the best or most evocative cover, then this should be entered for it. The picture leaves the reader in no doubt that he/she is going to read about rural France. Yet for all my enthusiasm, it doesn't do the story justice.

This is an outstanding read, pulling the reader straight into the Cévennes mountain region of France with such simplicity and effectiveness. The novel starts with the main character's car being stuck in a straggling flock of sheep which Catherine is not used to, making her imagine a flood in which her car may dislodge and "be swept downstream with the sheep". Just the next day she answers her cottage door (which I imagine to be the one on the cover) to a local farmer delivering a consignment of hay which Catherine has no idea what to do with. Rosy Thornton is brilliant at conveying scenes that the reader believes he/she is also living and therefore sharing, first-hand, the experiences of the characters.

Catherine has no super-powers, she's not a powerful, beautiful heroine, yet I wanted her for my best friend. She's warm-hearted, with a quiet bravery that she plays down. She is generous and makes friends easily, melting the hearts of the "suspicious of outsiders" locals. Soon she becomes part of the community and even manages to cope with the excessive bureaucracy without pulling her hair out.

This is a warm, inviting book, even though the love-attraction is flawed (albeit handsome and in many ways appealing) with secrets only revealed towards the end.

The array of characters have their individual foibles: there's the selfish sister, the very funny daughter who can't settle and the quiet, studious son. And that's not counting the colourful local characters who have to face their own problems. No-one can accuse this novel of being boring or repetitive.

But Rosy Thornton is a master of description. She brings the story alive, either through the pelting weather: "through the descending curtain of gray she could make out the gate at the end of his yard" or through the markets heaving under their selections of fruit and vegetables: "fat, blanched leeks (and) butter beans for drying, their creamy pods stippled with purple". She sees the countryside as an artist, "the sky was a luminous mauve...giving the illusion that road and rocks and vegetation were illuminated from some hidden source, like ethereal stage lighting".

And it doesn't end there. If we can feel and see the story, we can also taste it. This is the world of thick green soup, of dates and bacon, of wild mushrooms on toast, of wild boar and venison, and a scrumptious Mirabelle tart.

I was so enthralled, I didn't want the book to end. It certainly is a page-turner, but I savoured it, restricting myself to just a few pages per day because I knew that when I finished it, I'd feel I'd lost a friend. And I did.
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2 of 3 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars One to savour, 10 Aug 2010
By 
Big Bertha (UK) - See all my reviews
(TOP 500 REVIEWER)   
This review is from: The Tapestry of Love (Hardcover)
A couple of years ago I read More Than Love Letters by this author, a light-hearted entertaining book that I really enjoyed so I was interested to read her latest novel and thought it would be a change from my usual crime/thriller type reading.

Catherine Parkstone is a divorced, middle-aged woman who decides to uproot and move to the Cévennes Mountain region of France, an area she fondly remembers from childhood memories. Her new home is a granite built house on the edge of a small hamlet backing onto the mountain.

Catherine is a lovely character, warm and indulgent, someone you can't help but like and although an outsider it's not long before she starts taking tentative steps to become part of the local community, building her relationships with her neighbours who are wonderfully described, realistic and interesting. Her tapestry and needlework business is starting to take off and you begin to wonder if it's all going just a little bit too well. Throw in a touch of French bureaucracy, family members visiting and things begin to change.

Rosy Thornton's description of the granite built houses sprinkled in hamlets throughout the rough terrain of the Cévennes is wonderful; the mountain springs, the woodland, the animals and the weather are woven into a marvellously descriptive novel that takes you to the heart of the countryside, making you delight in the atmosphere and the tranquillity. I've never visited the region but having read this I almost feel as though I have.

A lovely book and unlike the fast-paced thrillers I usually read, this is definitely one to savour.
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1 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The Tapestry of Love, 14 April 2014
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I really enjoyed this book... It was very easy to read after a long stressful day... I would definitely read more by Rosy Thornton... I have already recommended this book to a couple of friends
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The Tapestry of Love
The Tapestry of Love by Rosy Thornton (Paperback - 14 Oct 2010)
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