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A Town Called Solace

by Mary Lawson

Other authors: See the other authors section.

MembersReviewsPopularityAverage ratingConversations / Mentions
4973150,009 (4.08)1 / 122
"As Solace opens, we meet a Northern Ontario family in crisis: their rebellious teenage daughter, Rose, has disappeared. Weeks have passed with no word, but still Rose's little sister, Clara, keeps a daily vigil at the living-room window, hoping that Rose will come back. Feisty and fierce, Clara is not only missing Rose; she is also missing her elderly friend and next-door neighbour, Mrs. Orchard, a retired schoolteacher who is away in hospital. While standing at the window, Clara keeps an eye out for Rose and an eye on Mrs. Orchard's house. Then, one afternoon, a strange young man in a strange car pulls into Mrs. Orchard's driveway and proceeds to move into the house as if he owns the place. Which it turns out he does: Mrs. Orchard has died and left it to him. Soon we discover that Clara's beloved Mrs. Orchard has a complicated and tragic past, and the real mystery at the heart of this novel is what happened between her and Liam, the man in the car. Solace is told in three distinct, compelling voices--Clara's, Mrs. Orchard's, and Liam's--cutting back and forth to carefully uncover the layers of grief, remorse, and love that connect families, both the ones we're born into and the ones we choose, and steadily building towards an assured, heart-wrenching and (despite its losses) uplifting ending. A beautifully written, masterful, suspenseful and deeply humane novel by one of our great storytellers."--… (more)
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» See also 122 mentions

Showing 1-5 of 31 (next | show all)
Rounded down from 4 1/4 stars ( )
  MichaelH85 | Mar 14, 2024 |
A Town called Solace is a beautifully written story in 3 POVs:

- A little girl Clara who strives to adapt and handle the new circumstances that she's exposed to: A long wait for her rebellious teenage sister who left home and has been unheard from for weeks and taking care of her elderly neighbour's cat, Moses, as promised while the neighbour, Mrs Orchard, is at the hospital.

- Mrs Elizabeth Orchard, the neighbour, who is reminiscing about the life she has lived while admitted to the hospital.

- Liam Kane, a recently divorced and unemployed (by choice) lawyer who newly arrives into this small town into the house of Mrs Orchard to Clara's dismay.

As the story unfolds, we learn about the days leading up to the current situation, all that transpired between Elizabeth and Liam in the distant past and uncover how the characters are dealing with everything that they are facing.

The story has a beautiful way of dealing with emotions especially grief and change. It took me a while to get absorbed but once I did, I couldn't stop myself from turning the pages.

At around, 200 pages, this can be one book to add to your TBRs to hit your reading goals for this year if you haven't already.

The ending of the book was everything. It was really satisfying in a way. I felt like it was complete. ( )
  AnrMarri | Aug 1, 2023 |
Clara, 7, lives in a small Canadian town named Solace with her parents and her sister, 16-year old Rose. When Rose runs away after yet another argument with her mother, Clara is bereft and sets up a vigil at the living room window awaiting Rose's return. Across the street, she sees an unfamiliar car pull into Mrs. Orchard's driveway, which worries her since her elderly widowed friend is hospitalized, having left Clara in charge of her cat during her absence. The man exiting the car is Liam Hale, who has a long history with Mrs. Orchard that began in his childhood. The story is told from the perspectives of Clara, Liam and Mrs. Orchard.

There are surprises throughout the book - some good, some startling. It is well written with a satisfying conclusion. ( )
  pdebolt | Jul 17, 2023 |
As usual...lovely writing, believable characters, love the setting (small town in Canada), slow reveal of the connection between Elizabeth and Liam. Highly recommend. ( )
  almin | Jun 27, 2023 |
A story which connected with me on a number of levels. ( )
  oldblack | Apr 29, 2023 |
Showing 1-5 of 31 (next | show all)
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Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
Mary Lawsonprimary authorall editionscalculated
Huculak, MaggieNarratorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Isen, TajjaNarratorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Lake, IanNarratorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
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"As Solace opens, we meet a Northern Ontario family in crisis: their rebellious teenage daughter, Rose, has disappeared. Weeks have passed with no word, but still Rose's little sister, Clara, keeps a daily vigil at the living-room window, hoping that Rose will come back. Feisty and fierce, Clara is not only missing Rose; she is also missing her elderly friend and next-door neighbour, Mrs. Orchard, a retired schoolteacher who is away in hospital. While standing at the window, Clara keeps an eye out for Rose and an eye on Mrs. Orchard's house. Then, one afternoon, a strange young man in a strange car pulls into Mrs. Orchard's driveway and proceeds to move into the house as if he owns the place. Which it turns out he does: Mrs. Orchard has died and left it to him. Soon we discover that Clara's beloved Mrs. Orchard has a complicated and tragic past, and the real mystery at the heart of this novel is what happened between her and Liam, the man in the car. Solace is told in three distinct, compelling voices--Clara's, Mrs. Orchard's, and Liam's--cutting back and forth to carefully uncover the layers of grief, remorse, and love that connect families, both the ones we're born into and the ones we choose, and steadily building towards an assured, heart-wrenching and (despite its losses) uplifting ending. A beautifully written, masterful, suspenseful and deeply humane novel by one of our great storytellers."--

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amazon ca : New York Times bestselling author Mary Lawson, acclaimed for digging into the "wilderness of the human heart", is back after almost a decade with a fresh and timely novel that is different in subject but just as emotional and atmospheric as her beloved earlier work.

A Town Called Solace--the brilliant and emotionally radiant new novel from Mary Lawson, her first in nearly a decade--opens on a family in crisis: rebellious teenager Rose been missing for weeks with no word, and Rose's younger sister, the feisty and fierce Clara, keeps a daily vigil at the living-room window, hoping for her sibling's return.

Enter thirtyish Liam Kane, newly divorced, newly unemployed, newly arrived in this small northern town, where he promptly moves into the house next door--watched suspiciously by astonished and dismayed Clara, whose elderly friend, Mrs. Orchard, owns that home. Around the time of Rose's disappearance, Mrs. Orchard was sent for a short stay in hospital, and Clara promised to keep an eye on the house and its remaining occupant, Mrs. Orchard's cat, Moses. As the novel unfolds, so does the mystery of what has transpired between Mrs Orchard and the newly arrived stranger.

Told through three distinct, compelling points of view--Clara's, Mrs. Orchard's, and Liam Kane's--the novel cuts back and forth among these unforgettable characters to uncover the layers of grief, remorse, and love that connect families, both the ones we're born into and the ones we choose. A Town Called Solace is a masterful, suspenseful and deeply humane novel by one of our great storytellers.
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