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Sharing our love for authors, and the stories they are inspired to tell.

‘Daughters Of The House’ by Michele Roberts

So as not to show any spoilers I have not included a synopsis, however, you can find out more about the story by simply clicking on the cover image.

If you don’t really want to read any major spoilers, then you can tease yourself a little more, by reading the first few lines of the story … here

The cemetery was a square plot of ground, enclosed by a high wall with ornamental turrets at the corners. The dead lay inside this fortified enclosure in rows as neat as those in the Martins’ kitchen-garden. They rotted quietly; like the dropped fruit you found hidden under the leaves of the tomato plants.

Paperback edition page 107

The wobbly singing of the little choir stopped. One of the altar-boys looked about uncertainly, then went on swinging his censer. Another struggled to relight his taper, extinguished by the wind. A third held a bucket of water towards the priest.

Paperback edition page 110

Teaser Tuesday Button - A Daily Rhythm


Teaser Tuesdays is a weekly bookish meme, hosted by … Jenn at ‘A Daily Rhythm’

Anyone can take part, by just doing the following:

Grab your current read.

Open to a random page.

  1. Share a couple of  “teaser” sentences, from somewhere on that page.
  2. Be careful not to share “spoiler” sentences.
  3. Remember to share the title and author too.
  4. Head on over to ‘should be reading’ and leave a link to your post, so that others can share it and you can share other people’s.

It would be great if you then decided to leave a comment for Jenn, as we all like to receive them and are interested in sharing your thoughts.


Written by

I can’t remember a time, even as a child, when I haven’t been passionate about books and reading.
I began blogging, when I realised just how many other people out there shared my passion for the written word and I have been continually amazed at the wealth of books that are available and the amount of great new friends I have made, from literally 'The Four Corners Of The World'.

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  • Great teaser lines and I love the description of the cemetery. I enjoy old cemeteries and find them fascinating places, despite the fact I plan to be cremated and tossed into our pond, 😉 I’m also intrigued by the second snippet. I’m not quite sure what’s going on with the bucket of water!

    I’m currently reading Still Life by Louise Penny. Here’s a paragraph from page 36:

    “In all the years Jean Guy Beauvoir had worked with Gamache, through all the murders and mayhem, it never ceased to thrill him, hearing that simple sentence. ‘Tell me what you know.’ It signaled the beginning of the hunt. He was the alpha dog. And Chief Inspector Gamache was Master of the Hunt.”

    • Hi Kelly,

      Hubbie and I, author and publish ‘Treasure Trails’, whereby a murderer is revealed, a spy ring uncovered, or the missing treasure found, through a series of clues …


      Cemeteries and church grounds make fascinating places for at least a couple of clues, so we spend quite a lot of our time exploring the churches in our local area. We live in an area replete with military history and can boast several military cemeteries from both World Wars and of course later conflicts. Families from all over the World, visit the area specifically to research their family history, which only adds to the interest. If you hover over the map to the south west, on the web link, you will see Somerset which is where I live, also Wiltshire and Hampshire, which are the business areas we cover with the trails.
      I am so pleased that you decided to start the ‘Armand Gamache’ series at the beginning, so that I have the easiest of decisions in adding this one to my ‘Want To Read’ list.

      I may be totally wrong and I shall wait for your assessment, but I get the impression that Gamache sounds like quite a flamboyant character, with Beauvoir being a great foil for his eccentricities.

      I hope that you are enjoying the book so far and thanks for sharing 🙂

        • It keeps us out of trouble and walking some quite long distances, which can only be good … except for when it’s raining cats and dogs, like it has been this week 🙂

    • Hi Sandra,

      I know the title of the book is ‘Daughters Of The House’, however technically, whilst the two main protagonists are related, they are not sisters, neither are they of the same nationality – That’s all I am going to give away, although I rather think you might enjoy the story 🙂

      I rather liked the analogy you picked up on, about the dead being like rotting tomatoes, although the part of that sentence which stood out for me, was where Michele describes the dead as laying in neat rows and rotting quietly! – Morbid I know, but really descriptive.

      Thanks for stopping by, I always look forward to your visits 🙂

    • Hi Mary Ann,

      I guess that if you take the description at face value, this cemetery does sound like a bit of a morbid place and there are indeed portions of this story which give truth to that. However there are several light hearted sections of the book, with some excellent interactions between the two young protagonists.

      Speaking on a personal level, I quite enjoy checking out cemeteries and churches, of which we have a wealth of in our immediate area. We can also boast an abbey and two cathedrals, within the space of a few miles, so as we both enjoy exploring and experiencing the varied architecture of the church buildings, together with the interesting grounds and cemeteries, this descriptive writing is right up my street.

      Thanks for taking the time to check out my post, I always appreciate your comments 🙂

  • I’m telling you Yvonne, this sounds very Stephen King-ish. “The dead lay inside this fortified enclosure in rows as neat as those in the Martins’ kitchen-garden. They rotted quietl…”
    I may have to add this to my wishlist. Happy reading 🙂

    • Hi Naida,

      I can see where the Stephen King connection is coming from, when I read certain passages from the book.

      However this is also as much a story about the coming of age of two cousins – the ‘Daughters Of The House’, the cultural barriers they need to overcome coming as they do from different countries and differing social backgrounds, and not least the terrible secrets and lies they are forced to keep to protect all they hold dear.

      I do think that this is one you might enjoy and it did make it as a Booker Prize Finalist!

      Thanks for stopping by, I hope that all is well with you 🙂

    • Hi Wendy,

      There have been some very mixed reactions about this book, from those who didn’t like the writing style, to those who declared that the excerpts I have featured, don’t match the ‘feeling’ being portrayed by the cover art.

      I think that this is one of those stories which highlights just how subjective reviewing a book can be. It is all down to personal taste – what one person will avidly devour and enjoy, another might not – and of course, vice versa.

      Personally, I thoroughly enjoyed the descriptive writing style and the unique and interesting storyline and yes! … in some parts, the story did exactly reflect the cover art.

      Thank you for your interest in today’s post and for taking the time to comment. I always appreciate it and I genuinely think that you might well enjoy this one 🙂

  • What a beautifully atmospheric teaser you have shared with us in that first extract but then like Kelly I love old cemeteries, the more Gothic the better.

    Oh dear, I’ve just flipped open the book I’m about to begin – Taken by Jacqui Rose – to page 133/4 and if this is any indication of the writing (far too much of the ‘f’ word for my liking) I’m not going to enjoy it.

    • Hi Tracy,

      Since starting out with ‘Treasure Trails’, we have discovered more churches and cemeteries in Wiltshire, Somerset and Hampshire, than I knew existed, although some of them are now in such a negelected state, that it is frankly sad to see and so many churches are now kept firmly locked during the day to keep out the vandals, that their beauty can never be fully appreciated. Such a sad sign of the times and a reflection on us as a nation?
      I am not a huge fan of too much gratuitous swearing in books, although I can turn a blind eye to it, if it is in keeping with the storyline or the physical location where the story is set. I have had one or two author review requests which fall into the latter category and I have had to grit my teeth a little to get through them.

      I did check out ‘Taken’ and I can see just from reading the premise, that this is going to be quite a hard hitting and emotional storyline and as soon as Jacqui’s writing is likened to that of Martina Cole and Jessie Keane, I know that it isn’t one for me.

      I hope that you can see past the language barrier and manage to finish the book.
      Thanks for stopping by and enjoy the rest of your week – if it ever stops raining that is 🙂

      • Sadly only two pages in I’m not going to continue. The swearing I think I could have coped with, the extreme violence aimed at women I couldn’t.

        Yes, it always makes me feel so sad to see these old graveyards so neglected and worse still vandalised.

        • I don’t think I have ever given up on a book completely, although I have to admit, there are a few that I have really struggled to finish!

          Martina Cole and authors of that ilk, I have never really been that drawn to in the first place, otherwise my list of ‘struggled to finish’, might be a heck of a lot longer!

          Jacqui Rose sounds like another to add to my ‘authors to avoid’ list, which sounds bad, as a book is down to the individual readers taste. However, I trust your judgement, especially if it only took a few pages to make your mind up 🙂

Written by Yvonne