The Highland Hens – Judy Leigh

Mimi – surely she personifies to an extent, how we all want to be if we have the privilege of achieving the ripe old age that is 88, although I do not condone rudeness, however old you are! Mimi seems to be the much loved matriarch of a family of ’interesting’ characters, each of whom brings a little ‘je ne sais quoi’ to the family. I did find myself rather feeling for Fin, as he tried to justify the behaviour of his family members, whilst conducting a legal battle against his erstwhile wife Karen, who seemed to be living up to her name somewhat! Mimi however seems fairly oblivious to it all, provided that she is surrounded by people in her life that tell her she is beautiful, and who are interested in her former stage presence.

I immediately warmed to Jess, especially with the way that she behaved towards Mimi; she showed true compassion and empathy. I liked to think that there was some kind of spark between Jess and Mimi’s Son, Hamish, or was there more of a latent spark between Jess and Angus, Mimi’s rather angry, grumpy, temporarily wheelchair bound Son.

Lots of questions arise along the way:

  • What’s the story behind Angus’ accident on the Inverness road? Why has it made him so bad tempered?
  • What happened to Augustine?
  • Can we see Jess remaining in Scotland?

I found myself fascinated by Mimi – the way that she didn’t seem to have a care in the world. I think that a bit of misinformation though – I think Mimi did care about her friends and family, and I felt as though she would only be truly happy when her dear Sons were happy. Mimi seemed very happy under the care of Jess, but I did think at times that the care was a mutual thing, with the pair of them both benefitting immensely from each others’ company.

This book captured my heart with its themes of love, love lost and family and I found myself totally immersed in the story, to an extent that I didn’t want the book to end – and when it did, it broke my heart.

Please read this rather marvellous book for yourself – what’s not to love!

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