Friday, July 15, 2011

Book Review: The Tapestry of Love

'The Tapestry of Love'
Author: Rosy Thornton

Format: Paperback
Published: Headline Book Publishing; Oct. 2010
Pages: 352
Genre: Chick-lit
Grade: C
Source: Author

Synopsis: A rural idyll: that's what Catherine is seeking when she sells her house in England and moves to a tiny hamlet in the CĂ©vennes mountains. With her divorce in the past and her children grown, she is free to make a new start, and her dream is to set up in business as a seamstress. But this is a harsh and lonely place when you're no longer just here on holiday. There is French bureaucracy to contend with, not to mention the mountain weather, and the reserve of her neighbors, including the intriguing Patrick Castagnol. And that's before the arrival of Catherine's sister, Bryony.

My Take: I was really looking forward to reading this book this summer. I mean look at that cover! Don't you just want to go there and relax your cares away? I love reading books with this concept. Women moves to foreign country, restores old house, meets charming neighbors, becomes one with new town, falls in love, all is well with the world. While it may be formulaic now, it is a book I generally enjoy. So yes, I dug into this book with some serious fervor.

Our heroine is Catherine who moves to the wilds of France, not really to escape her old life, but to find a more relaxed, laid-back new one. She is a divorcee with two grown children so she doesn't have anything holding her back in England. It's time for her to do what she wants. And what she wants to do is move to France and focus on her tapestry business. She makes homemade tapestries. Kinda cool, right?

Once there, her neighbors took to her immediately. I expected at least someone to give her some grief, but nope, she immediately became one of the old rustic town and her business took off. However the French government wasn't so easy. One of these new neighbors is Patrick and he is handsome and charming and maybe even a little brooding. 

Here's my problem, maybe because I do love these types of books and I have read so many, I knew almost instantly what was going to happen in this one. I didn't really need to keep turning the pages because, while sweet and charming, I knew how it would all play out. I needed some funny characters or some more drama than French government to liven up the pages, otherwise, I mean really all chick-lit books end the same so there has got to be something to spice up the middle bits. However, this is not to say I wouldn't give Thornton another try because I love this genre and I think there's always room for more great women writers within it.

Cover Lust: As I said earlier, I want to go to there!


  1. Not sure I'd classify this one as "chick lit" but I guess it depends on your definition. I always think of "chick lit" as being more shallow than what I read in The Tapestry of Love, plus the prose was just too beautiful. I reviewed this one a couple of months ago. Thanks for sharing your thoughts.

  2. It's too bad the book was so predictable. Having lived in France, I can guarantee you they would not take to a new neighbor so quickly - especially if she's from Britain. A mother at my son's school thought we were British and she used to say horrible things to me. When she found out we're American, she became polite.

  3. I liked it cos it was sweet and nice. Would not say it was chicklit either, my chicklit definition is humour ;)

  4. hmmm, sounds a bit dull and predictable...i will skip this one!

  5. Oh I'm the only one who thinks this is chick-lit, ahhh! I guess since it was predictable, followed a tried and true formula, to me it seemed like chick lit, but yes I would agree, it wasn't silly like other chick lit.

  6. Funny I read this book in January 2011 and I liked it. I found it a warm comfortable book, kind of like visiting with a close friend for a few days and catching up with what has happened in her life for the last few years.

    Even though I thought it started off a bit slow, it wasn't long until I was drawn into the story. It was kind of like taking a lovely two day vacation in the Cevennes Mountains of France. It took me two days to read it. Yes it was different than a lot of chick lit books, although I really never thought of it as chick lit. But I suppose when you come right down to it, it probably is.

    Sweet dreams and happy reading.

  7. I thought this book was sweet - a nice summer read. But I agree it was very predictable.

  8. You're right - these books are so formulaic, but I almost always enjoy them. And sometimes predictable is okay, if you're prepared for that (which I am now!) Thanks for the review!

  9. I have this and want to read it and so I did not read this entire post. :) Will once I get the thing finished, 'K?

  10. I have a copy of this one. I need to get to it soon. I realy want to read this one.

  11. I too love these kinds of books. But I totally get what you are saying: after a while, they can be incredibly predictable. But luckily, lively characters keep them fun and totally readable. I also find that the setting can really effect how much I enjoy the book. Based on you review, I feel like I would love the setting -- and the tapestry bit is neat.

  12. It sounds like this is a more quiet book than what I'd consider chick lit. But I agree that predictable is okay as long as it's made interesting. I hope to read this book soon, so I'll find out for myself soon enough. ;)


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