The Weeping Sands
Three narratives of love and loss are interwoven in John Wheatley's novel which is set on the isle of Anglesey, Wales. Spanning 350 years, from English Civil War to present day, a ruined mansion provides the link between past and present. Meanwhile, the `weeping sands` of the title, the Lavan Sands, at the eastern edge of the Menai Strait provides a melancholy background to the novel`s events. More
Three narratives of love and loss are interwoven in John Wheatley's third novel which, like its predecessors, is set on the isle of Anglesey, North Wales. Spanning 350 years, from English Civil War to present day, a ruined mansion provides the link between past and present. Meanwhile, the `weeping sands` of the title, the Lavan Sands, at the eastern edge of the Menai Straits, provide a fatalistic backdrop to the events of the novel.
When TV presenter, Jenna Shaw is invited to take part in a TV show, part of a series in which celebrities explore their ancestry, she has, at first, some misgivings. However, meeting the production assistant, Maisie Flood, she is intrigued, and as the show is planned and filmed, romantic interest is kindled between the two girls. The journey will take Jenna as far afield as Virginia, but will lead eventually to the great house, Baron Hill at Beaumaris, Anglesey, now a ruin, where, with Maisie at her side, she will discover some dramatic facts about her family`s history.
In the second narrative, the year is 1831, and Isobel Harcourt, recovering from a breakdown following a failed love affair with artist, James Pennington, and in the care of her sister, is taken to convalesce at Baron Hill, the country seat of Lord Bulkeley. The strength of her passion, however, is far from dead, and as she resolves to renew contact with her estranged lover, she experiences strange sights and sounds which have ghostly intimations of events in the past.
350 years earlier, on the eve of the English Civil War, Thomas Cheadle, despised for his affair with Lady Anne Bulkeley, and blamed for the death of her husband, brings his twenty one year old son, Richard, to Anglesey for the first time. As the Civil War reaches Wales, jealousies and antagonisms between the Cheadle and Bulkeley families threaten tragic consequences.
How do Isobel`s strange delusions link the past and the present?
What will be the consequences of James Pennington`s mission to find Isobel in Wales?
What will be the role of Meg, Pennington`s street-wise artist`s model, and sometime mistress, as she sees his fascination with the woman she sees as her rival?
And what will be the outcome of Jenna`s quest to trace her family`s past, and of the developing relationship between herself and Maisie?