Rosamunde Pilcher

Winter Solstice

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SUMMARY:Elfrida Phipps loves her new life in the pretty Hampshire village. She has a tiny cottage, her faithful dog Horace and the friendship of the neighbouring Blundells – particularly Oscar – to ensure that her days include companionship as well as independence. But an unforeseen tragedy upsets Elfrida's tranquillity: Oscar's wife and daughter are killed in a terrible car crash and he finds himself homeless when his stepchildren claim their dead mother's inheritance. Oscar and Elfrida take refuge in a rambling house in Scotland which becomes a magnet for various waifs and strays who converge upon it, including an unhappy teenage girl. It could be a recipe for disaster. But somehow the Christmas season weaves its magical spell and for Elfrida and Oscar, in the evening of their lives, the winter solstice brings love and solace.
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588 printed pages



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    Neonila Kotykhas quotedlast year
    fate decreed otherwise
    Neonila Kotykhas quotedlast year
    she was dead on time
    Сигита Кармонайтеhas quoted5 years ago
    I’ve already written down all the wonderful things that happened today, about Carrie coming back, and going out for lunch, and her saying maybe she and I can go away for Christmas somewhere. The cinema was really good, too. Well, now it is ten-thirty and I’m just going to bed. Writing this in my dressing-gown. What happened was I had a bath after supper and washed my hair, and while it was drying went into the kitchen to make a hot chocolate. Then the phone rang, and Mum came to find me and to say it was Carrie wanting to talk to me. I think they‘d already had a chat. I picked up the kitchen telephone and waited till I’d heard the click and knew Mum had put the other phone down so wasn’t going to listen. She does sometimes.
    And then Carrie told me. We are going to Scotland for Christmas. Elfrida, Grandpa’s cousin, is staying there with a friend and they both want us to go. It’s a place called Creagan, and they say the house is quite big. It is so exciting, I could burst. Carrie says it’s too far to drive in the middle of winter, so we’re going to fly to Inverness and then a taxi will meet us and drive us the rest of the way. We’re going on December 15th, and she’s already booked seats.
    Elfrida’s friend is called Oscar, but Carrie doesn’t know what he’s like because she’s never met him.
    I said, had she told Mum and Gran, and she said no. And I said would I tell them, and she said no again, because Gran never much approved of Elfrida and it would be better if Carrie told them herself, so she’s coming over some time tomorrow to break the news and calm Gran down if she starts being difficult. Mum won’t say a word, because all she can think about is Randall and Florida.
    I asked Carrie what I should pack, and she said fur coats and snow-shoes, but of course that was just a joke.
    I can’t believe I am going to Scotland.
    I am already counting the days.

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