Robin Pilcher’s career has been a varied one. Prior to becoming a bestselling novelist, he worked as a farmer, assistant film cameraman and a PR consultant. His first book, An Ocean Apart, was a New York Times bestseller. His latest novel, The Long Way Home is Pilcher’s fifth novel and is published in the United States by Thomas Dunne Books.
As a first time reader of Robin Pilcher I had to agree with others who have said his writing is reminiscent of Rosamunde Pilcher and Maeve Binchy.
When Claire Barclay’s mother met and married Leo Harrison it meant a move from West Sussex to Scotland. It was a transition Claire was willing to make and the unknown became easier when she met Jonas Fairweather. The move became more difficult when Leo’s children, Charity and Marcus, were home from boarding school. The two Harrison children hated Claire and her mother.
Claire spent years as best friend to Jonas and just when she was willing to declare her love, he cruelly sent her away. Heartbroken, she decided to see a bit of the world before settling into school. Her plans were interrupted in New York when she got a job in a restaurant and fell in love with and married, Art Barrington. Claire stayed in New York and banished all thoughts of Jonas for many years.
When Claire’s mother, considerably younger than Leo, dies unexpectantly, Leo’s health begins to decline also. When Leo falls, Claire returns to Scotland where she and Art make plans for Leo’s home and come face-to-face with Jonas. Will Jonas ruin Claire’s plans for her childhood home out of revenge? There are secrets that must be unearthed if all the players in Claire’s world can have closure and move on.
The Long Way Home is a family drama that will keep readers attention from the first to the last page. Its attention to the consequences of secrets, jealousy, and revenge gives one pause and is a reminder that people ultimately reap what they sow. Pilcher has written a lovely story with characters you will love and those you will hate. The combination makes for a thrilling roller coaster ride.
The only criticism I have is Pilcher frequently jumps back and forth in time and it is confusing. If Pilcher was not a bestselling author I don’t think his publisher would allow those time skips. That said, it’s a wonderful read.