An early work from the New York Times bestselling author of The Giver of Stars, Jojo Moyes, the story of a young woman who opens an eclectic shop and comes to terms with the secrets of her past.
In the sixties, Athene Forster was the most glamorous girl of her generation. Nicknamed the Last Deb, she was also beautiful, spoiled, and out of control. When she agreed to marry the gorgeous young heir Douglas Fairley-Hulme, her parents breathed a sigh of relief. But within two years, rumors had begun to circulate about Athene's affair with a young salesman.
Thirty-five years later, Suzanna Peacock is struggling with her notorious mother's legacy. The only place Suzanna finds comfort is in The Peacock Emporium, the beautiful coffee bar and shop she opens that soon enchants her little town. There she makes perhaps the first real friends of her life, including Alejandro, a male midwife, escaping his own ghosts in Argentina.
The specter of her mother still haunts Suzanna. But only by confronting both her family and her innermost self will she finally reckon with the past--and discover that the key to her history, and her happiness, may have been in front of her all along.
APPLE BOOKS REVIEW
Once we picked up Jojo Moyes’ The Peacock Emporium, we never wanted the story to end. Suzanna has always thirsted for a sense of belonging. Left with the legacy of her mother, a glamorous-but-wild debutante who abandoned her family and then died unexpectedly before her daughter could get to know her, Moyes’ heroine has been troubled for decades. But when she opens a small cafe, the friendships she makes there start to transform her life. This intensely felt story is perfect for a luxuriously relaxed afternoon.
Moyes moves forward from her Me Before You trilogy with an emotionally luscious, freestanding novel about generations of mothers and daughters navigating grief and the satisfaction of self-discovery. Suzanna Peacock lives in a small town in Suffolk near the estate of the family from whom she has estranged herself, and struggles with an unsettled marriage and pressure to have a baby. Despite her awkwardness with people, she opens a quirky coffee and curio shop. A young mother in an abusive relationship and an Argentinian male midwife become her close friends at the shop, but she keeps even from them her inner turmoil about her relationships to her missing birth mother, wild debutante Athene Forster, and to Vivi Fairley-Hulme, the mother who raised her. Moyes moves back and forth though the timeline to tell Suzanne and Vivi's stories with profound sympathy. Though this is not a romance novel like Moyes's previous works, it maintains their legacy of diving into the emotions of desire and connection, and a spirit of optimism and setting the world right.
The Peacock Empotium
Sooo disappointed. Very unlikable/unbelievable characters. The story was very choppy and seemed to drag on. Not like the usual fantastic writing from Jojo Moyes.
I hesitated to read this book based on one mediocre review. I won’t do that again. Flawed characters, perceived events and revelations combine for a page turning book.