Friday, August 12, 2016

The House at the End of Hope Street - Menna Van Praag

This is a sweet story of a shy, bookish college girl finding the confidence to be who she wants to be.  Alba has had a bad experience with her advisor resulting in her leaving school and arriving at the house at 11 Hope Street in Cambridge, not knowing what to do with her life.  The caretaker, Peggy, welcomes her to stay for 99 days to figure things out.  The house has been a sanctuary for women who have lost hope and need a place to find it again.  The walls of the house are filled with pictures of previous guests, famous authors, poets and suffragettes.  The house and the pictures communicate with Alba and a couple of other down on their luck women, Greer and Carmen, goading them into pursuing their dreams.

I enjoyed the literary references throughout the book and there's even a recap of the famous women included at the end of the paperback.

Some quotes:

"We all have to make choices,  Since we can't have two lives, only one.  But, most of those choices we make fresh every day, not just once.  So, if you regret something, if you want to change your mind, you usually can."
"Some people don't have what it takes to be happy.  It's not an easy thing, you know.  It takes great courage and determination, to keep locking for light in all the darkness of life."
An entertaining summer read.

Published: 2013  Read:  August 2016  Genre: Fantasy fiction

ISBN: 978-0-14-312494-8

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