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Small Kindnesses by [Robyn, Satya]
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Small Kindnesses Kindle Edition

4.6 out of 5 stars 48 customer reviews

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Product details

  • Format: Kindle Edition
  • File Size: 695 KB
  • Print Length: 330 pages
  • Publisher: Woodsmoke Press (16 Jan. 2014)
  • Sold by: Amazon Media EU S.à r.l.
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B00A7WDRBA
  • Text-to-Speech: Enabled
  • X-Ray:
  • Word Wise: Enabled
  • Enhanced Typesetting: Enabled
  • Average Customer Review: 4.6 out of 5 stars 48 customer reviews
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #209,883 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
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Customer Reviews

4.6 out of 5 stars
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Top Customer Reviews

Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
This is one of the best books that I have read this year (of 120+ and counting). If you liked "The unlikely pilgrimage of Harold Fry" then you will love this. A story of a widower who accidentally finds things out about his deceased wife and then decides to delve a little further as somehow , he feels he needs to know the truth "to put things to bed" so to speak. A story of human love and emotion from beyond the grave. That small kindnesses really do make the world of difference to all of us and we can make a huge difference to someone else by just that one action- a smile, a wave, a helping hand.
We all have secrets and some are carried to the grave, but some leave small ripples that have to be traced to the source as the origin may be different to what has been presumed......
A lovely, lovely book full of good nature and poignancy. A big 5* from me
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By ElaineG TOP 100 REVIEWER on 5 Mar. 2013
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
This is an absolutely breath taking read. It is the story of Leonard, a widower who finds himself in a dilemma when he comes across a train ticket in an old handbag belonging to his late wife Rose, to a town where as far as he is aware, she had never ever been to. The train ticket plays on his mind (as sometimes unexplained things do); he can't get it out of his head and when he meets an old friend of hers, Lily, something she says makes him realise that maybe he didn't know Rose as well as he thought.

The story moves in a very gentle way, the mystery is revealed gradually and deepens as the tale goes on, so by the end of it you really are hooked, wanting to know the truth, as much as Leonard.

Leonard himself is a wonderful character - a genuinely nice man who is very normal and the author has portrayed him in a very realistic way, we see his good points and his bad points. We soon get to really care about him as it his very normalness that is so appealing to the reader - he could be anybody's father, husband or brother.

The writing is wonderful and in particular the author has done a fantastic job of describing the loneliness of a widower living on his own after years of happy marriage. Just a simple sentence, such as pointing out the single set of crockery and cutlery on the draining board is enough to set the scene of Leonard's existence. It is a very poignant, moving story, but not all doom and gloom - there are some nice gentle humorous moments in there as well. Highly recommended.
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Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
A beautiful book I will definitely read more by this author. Paced just right keeps you guessing long enough without waffling on. You really feel for the characters. Got this free as in top kindle bestsellers at the time but this is a quality book and I would gladly have paid for this.
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Format: Kindle Edition
Small Kindnesses by Fiona Robyn is utterly delightful. Leonard, a widower, finds a railway ticket in an old handbag belonging to his late wife Rose. The ticket to Didcot, together with a letter from an old school friend of Rose, set Leonard off on a trail of discovery. A closely observed portrait of an extended family, as well as a study in grief and identity, Small Kindnesses is vibrant and real. Leonard is lightly flawed and very likeable as he deals with crisis after crisis without Rose's help and advice. Robyn highlights the double whammy that is every widow and widower's main tragedy: the dealing with grief and trauma without the help of the lost spouse. It is, as you would expect, touching, but it is far from soppy and makes you smile time after time.

Robyn's true strength is in her portrayal of relationships, particularly parent and child relationships. Here there are very different relationships between Leonard and Rose and their daughter, and their own parents, and their grandchildren:

In the morning they go to a park with a lake in the middle and an impressive playground. The boys swing on their swings for as long as the adults can bear to push them. After half an hour of continuous swinging, Leonard wonders if they would ever get tired of it. He sees them in his mind's eye with a huge back-up team of adult pushers to launch and re-launch them into the air twenty-four hours a day. They'll eat and drink on them, learn their times tables, sleep on them, grow out of their tiny trousers and into bigger and bigger ones, holding mini-TVs in their laps, chatting with friends who jump onto the swings beside them. 'The Amazing Swinging Twins!' the papers will announce, and psychologists and film-makers will come from far and wide to analyse them and film them as they swing.
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A confession: I got this book because I wanted something to put on my brand new kindle, and this one was free, and had excellent reviews. Thank you Amazon! You have introduced me to an author of whom I was unaware, but I shall certainly be looking out for her other works.
Other reviewers have already described the plot, so there's no point me doing the same. All I will say is that those reviews are well deserved. If Fiona Robyn's book is new to you, you're in for a treat.
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I loved this book and thought it was a beautifully observed exploration of loss, relationships and slow discovery of emerging new awareness. I was caught into Leonard's world right from page one and loved his gardener patience and sharp observation of the growing world. I enjoyed the gardening metaphor. I loved Satya's observation of relationships with all their light and shade. It was a book that made me laugh out loud in places and also made me cry. I read this very quickly and will read again more slowly a second time to savour. Satya is a new writer to me and I will look forward to reading more of her work.
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