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February 17, 2024

The Memory of Lavender and Sage by Aimie K. Runyan ~ A Review

by Susan Roberts

Temp├Ęsta is a New York food critic with an unhappy family life.  Her French-born mother died when she was 13 and she doesn't feel accepted by the rest of her family who own a huge Foundation.  Her father and his mother always preferred her brother Wal and made no secret of the fact that they felt like she was too much like her mother for her to be a real part of such a prestigious family.  When her father died, his entire estate is left to her brother - no surprise there - and it made her want to make some changes in her life.  She has a bit of money that was left to her by her mother so sight unseen she buys the house where her mother was born in Sainte-Colombe, a small village in Provence.  When she arrives at the house she questions her decision to buy the run-down and cluttered house where no one had lived for years.  A local builder assures her that the house has good bones and that it will be magnificent when it's cleaned out and updated.  She's also surprised at some of the negative feelings from the local residents who seem to be harboring bad feelings and memories about her mother.  

Amazon affiliate links are used on this site. A free book was provided for an honest review.

book cover of women's fiction novel The Memory of Lavendar and Sage by Aimie K. Runyan
February 2024; Harper Muse;  978-1400237258
audio, ebook, print (368 pages); women's fiction

Despite the shape the house was in and the negative feelings from some of the people in town, she decided to stay.  She gradually makes friends and becomes romantically involved with the builder who is helping her renovate her house.  She also finds that she has a special talent for growing herbs in her greenhouse that amazes her.  The small town is close to losing its school which would mean more of the young members of town would be moving away when Tempesta has an idea that she thinks will save the town.  Will the people in the town who dislike her go along with her plan and will her plan even work to help save the town?

This is a lovely book about family, friends, and community and about learning more about previous generations of your family. It was great to see the main character change from feeling unloved by her family to creating a new family of people not connected by blood but made up of the people who cared the most about her.

"I walked toward that future with hope in my heart and a memory of lavender and sage in my soul." (loc4775)

Susan Roberts grew up in Michigan but loves the laid-back life at her home in the Piedmont area of North Carolina where she is two hours from the beach to the east and the mountains in the west. She reads almost anything but her favorite genres are Southern Fiction and Historical Fiction.

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