with hope to repair the past brings two sisters to Lancaster County to visit their mother's sister. Their memories of Aunt Sylvia are barely visible yet something stirs Angela's heart to make the journey with her sister Rose. Memories of their mother linger within the walls of Sylvia's home. This is the home where their grandparents lived and raised their family.
Within the coves of A Letter from Lancaster County, Kate Lloyd skillfully writes of the journey begun with duty and spite. Angela and Rose grew up in the same house yet are worlds apart. Angela is married to a successful attorney and her two children are of a certain age where they no longer need their doting mother managing their busy schedules. Rose is single, owns her own business and pinches pennies.
The simplicity of Sylvia's life seems to be at the center of the story, yet the author wrote the story from the perspective of Rose and Angela. Chapter by chapter, the events of this short trip to Lancaster County unfold through the eyes of each woman. Their lives seem to parallel the lives of their aunt and their mother.
Sylvia's health is failing and the letter she wrote to her nieces was written with fervent hope to repair past tensions she had with her own sister. She is a delightful woman and it is through her quiet wisdom that she lets her nieces alone to discover what she had lost with her own sister. The past is a good teacher and regret can lead to bitterness.
Finding a photograph with their mother and Sylvia triggers a change that opens their hearts stirring a change within Angela and Rose. It is as though they were awakened to how they could change their lives to what was meant to be. We are rarely granted a glimpse into the lives of our mothers as young women. We think of them as mother, not a young woman who had dreams. Angela and Rose came to visit their aunt out of duty. They would choose a memento from the family home and go back to their lives in Seattle. Or would they?
As I read this book I thought of how life can be so different for people who were raised the same within the walls of the same home. One daughter does exactly what is expected and the other is bent on carving her niche in her own way. One can't help but wonder what causes this and yet for my own part, I had five brothers and five sisters growing up. It amazes me how we can each remember an event so differently.
As I read the book I was taken in by both Rose and Angela. I felt I was with them on this journey, a reminder of trips I have taken with my own sisters. This is a book worth adding to your collection. The simplicity of Sylvia's life and how she quietly accepts her nieces, each for who she is is wonderful!