The Glass Painter’s Daughter by Rachel Hore

Fran Morrison has recently come back to London, after travelling around the world building her career as a musician.  She originally left to get away from the cold relationship she had with her withdrawn and secretive father, who never told her anything about her mother or her mother’s death.  But now, Fran’s father is seriously ill and she has to come back and look after his glass painting business.

Fran and her father’s assistant Zac accept a commission from the local church to restore an old stained glass window, and while doing so, Fran uncovers a story from over 100 years earlier, in which she learns the story of another young woman named Laura.  As Fran struggles to cope with her changing life and circumstances, she finds her own life and feelings reflected in that of Laura’s story.

This book started off extremely well and I thought that I would love it.  I certainly enjoyed it – the writing flowed and I felt easy to lose myself in the story.  Although Fran’s story is the main bulk of the narrative, Laura’s story was also well told, and I find both storylines interesting.

However, the book was slightly marred by the apparent obsession with angels which was constant throughout (indeed, each chapter is headed by a quote about angels).  The other problem was that there were too many coincidences between the two main storylines, to be believable.  To say more would be to give away spoilers, but this annoyed  me slightly.

However, Fran was on the whole, an engaging narrator.  There are also a good supporting cast of characters, who were all well portrayed and the writing at times was very touching.

I would certainly try more by this author.  Despite my criticisms, this book intrigued me enough for me to keep reading quickly, and I would recommend it.

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