Aileen Doherty can’t wait to leave her sheltered life to go on her first adventure, tattie picking for the summer in Scotland, with her father and two older brothers. Before Aileen even steps foot in Scotland, though, she meets ‘Lucky Jimmy’ Walsh who falls in love at first sight. During the trip, the pair work together and fall in love but a horrible accident leaves both irreparably scarred in different ways.
Back at home, following more misery, Aileen makes it her mission to revive a lost garden. Meanwhile, Jimmy goes in search of other ways to improve his life.
On the surface, ‘The Lost Garden’ may look like your typical chick lit but it is so much more than boy meets girl, boy loses girl and so forth. This book explores the different kinds of love that people encounter – romantic love, the love of a parent or child as well as friendship and the love of a place. This novel also features darker elements which were really compelling.
‘The Lost Garden’ is also a study on how people cope with tragedy differently. The vast array of characters demonstrate different emotions and coping mechanisms in the face of the accident.
As always, Kate Kerrigan builds up a vivid picture for the reader, drawing you further and further into the story. Her emotive language is used with great aplomb and the characters are built up into three dimensional people who you genuinely care for. Kerrigan employs some interesting metaphors as well as a spiritual element in the story but her prose is always sensitive.
A great read.