In the imposing Glen Carrick House overlooking Scotland’s famous Loch Ness, lives eighty-eight-year-old Mimi McKinlay, cared for by her three adult sons. Hamish has inherited his mother’s musical talents, Fin is the responsible brother, and Angus has the complicated and brooding personality to match his dashing good looks.
But what all the brothers share is a concern that their beloved mother is living in her memories of her days on stage, while letting her present days pass her by.
Jess Oliver is at a turning point. Amicably divorced after years of being married, this trip to the Highlands is a first taste of independence. It isn’t long before the beauty and hospitality of Scotland captures her heart.
When Mimi and Jess’s paths cross, a friendship is formed that will change both women’s lives. And as together they find ways to look forward instead of to the past, long forgotten dreams are within reach, and every new day is fresh with possibilities.
The Highland Hens (Amazon US) (Amazon UK) (Audible)
I discovered author Judy Leigh last year and have grown very fond of her writing. She concentrates on writing about older people, which is so refreshing, as many older people like to read but maybe don’t necessarily want to read about all the beautiful young people (I’m talking to you, Danielle Steel). And so it was with great anticipation that I finally listened to the Highland Hens, an audiobook I’d gotten some months prior.
First off, I love the Scotland setting. For some reason, I’m a sucker for stories set in Great Britain and the surrounding areas. Second, the fact that it’s three men helping care for their aging mother made the book extra-special, as I don’t think it would have worked as well with three women caregivers since that is what society normally has.
This heartwarming story about friendship and family was a balm to my reading soul. Dear sweet Mimi was such a joy to read about; someone who lived her life to the fullest and didn’t let aging get her down. At 88, she’s lived and loved and can’t get her favorite musicals out of her head. If only there were more characters like Mimi in literature!
There is a slow burn of a romance in The Highland Hens, so if you like that, you’ll find a good pairing up in the novel. And it’s a realistic, adult, over 40 romance. None of that young 20-something, just starting out, not sure of oneself kind of romance. It’s so refreshing, I can’t wait to pick up Leigh’s other books, too. Highly recommend!
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