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One Hundred Years of Lenni and Margot

by Marianne Cronin

Lenni and Margot meet in “Terminal”.  Not a terminal in an airport waiting to go somewhere exciting… the terminal cancer ward waiting to go…  The nurses of the Glasgow Princess Royal hospital are calling it life-limiting but Lenni is not fooled.

Brittle, bad-mouthed and irreverent Lenni is 17, Margot in her purple pajamas is 83.  When the two meet in an art class that doctors have forbidden Lenni to attend, they form an instant bond at a time when they both need it most.  Together they have lived a hundred years.  To celebrate their shared century, they decide to paint their life stories –  one hundred canvasses of experiences  – of growing old and staying young, of giving joy, of being hurt, of receiving kindness, of war-time love and loss, of finding the person who is everything and mostly of courage….

I do need to give you a tissue alert but what a beautiful read.

The most beautifully written love letter to friendship, managing to make you laugh and cry uncontrollably. It’s quite simply brilliant – Woman and Home

A beautiful debut, funny, tender and animated by a willingness to confront life’s obstacles – Harpers Bazaar

Cronin’s characters are fully drawn, and chime together to tell a sweet story about connection, loss and living – Irish Times


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