Cathy Scarlet and Tom Feather are on the brink of realising their dream: to open a catering company in the heart of Dublin, the eponymous Scarlet Feather. Friends since college, Cathy and Tom are sure of each other and united in their shared goal, but not everyone around them is so supportive of their ambitions.
A disapproving mother-in-law, an overworked husband, a distracted girlfriend and terrible twins, hell-bent on creating as much havoc and asking as many difficult (yet humorous) questions as they possibly can, stir up recipes for trouble. Passion could very well be a feature on the menu as Tom and Cathy turn increasingly to each other for support and grow ever closer in their shared aim of making Scarlet Feather the best catering company Dublin has ever seen.
In Scarlet Feather Binchy once more does what she does best: introducing a cast of characters whose personalities develop gently and whose lives are carefully and almost imperceptibly blended into the mix of love affairs, heartache, humour and family ties. One of the finest aspects of Binchy's feather-light touch is that it's almost possible to forget that you are reading a work of fiction and feel instead as if you are amongst a group of friends. --Emily Lowson
From Publishers Weekly
Bestselling author Binchy (Tara Road, etc.) again explores the depths of family relationships in an 11th warm, involving drama. Set in contemporary Ireland over a period of one year, the smartly paced tale focuses on Cathy Scarlet and Tom Feather, cooking school chums who achieve their dream of opening a posh catering business, Scarlet Feather, in Dublin. Professionally, they're off to a good start; personally, their lives are falling apart. Cathy, whose out-of-work father plays the races while her mother toils as a housemaid, faces the consequences of having married Neil Mitchell, prized son of an upper-class family who employed Cathy's mother for years. Neil, a lawyer who champions worthy causes, is unconcerned about the tension between his wife and his snooty mother, and Cathy and Neil find themselves leading busy, separate lives. Tom has a live-in girlfriend whom he would love to marry, but Marcella, a manicurist in a classy store, yearns to succeed as a model before making any commitments. A charming cast of secondary characters includes Neil's cousins, Simon and Maud, two abandoned, nine-year-old twins who, in a surprising turn of events, come to live with Cathy's parents. The children's deadpan, exceedingly serious outlook on life is both heartbreaking and hilarious. One of Binchy's strengths is her subtle depiction of gradual changes in Irish society. By making her principal characters entrepreneurs, she reflects the ways Ireland's growing economic prosperity has altered social mores. Whether her readers are aware of such details, they help this wonderfully engaging book ring true. (Mar. 5).Forecast: Binchy's gift for creating a wide range of characters whose foibles and challenges make them lovable and real, coupled with her theme that genuine love can transform lives, add up to another crowd-pleaser. With major ad/promo, plus an author tour, this one is a lock for the charts.
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