Deborah McKinlay’s new novel, Lily the Tiller, is a whimsical tale about a West Country English lass with a self-taught talent for horticulture. The eponymous Lily scours the countryside looking for temporary gardening work and we meet her as she pitches up at Motthoe – a dilapidated, but once grand, country estate. Lily proceeds to work her quirky brand of magic on a patch of Motthoe’s grounds and all of its inhabitants’ hearts, not least that of reluctant owner, ‘Dreamer Harry’.
Written in a lyrical style, Lily the Tiller is a feel-good story with a delightful setting, passages of pure comedy and plenty of pretty plant talk, but the ominous undertones of Lily’s bleak past add a weightier element and, in the end, the reader is as engaged in her flight to freedom as she is. This is a book that is rich in humanity by an accomplished author and it delights from its very first page.
About the Author:
Deborah McKinlay is an experienced magazine contributor and the author of two previous novels: ‘The View From Here’ and ‘That Part Was True’. She writes full-time from her home in the West Country.