The Sea View Cafe

The Sea View Cafe

3.6K Reads 454 Votes 97 Part Story
Michael Graeme By MichaelGraeme Updated Dec 26, 2017

Fleeing a toxic marriage and a job that's killing him, Finn winds up in the forgotten seaside town of Carrickbar. It's winter and, like Finn the country is frozen and in crisis, pre-BREXIT-blues hanging over everything. All the old certainties have been blown away, and America has gone mad. Things don't look good for anyone, least of all him. But then he meets Hermione, owner of the Sea View Cafe, a woman with an eye for suffering and a heart ever ready to heal. If anyone can fix things, she can. 

But then there's Helena, Queen of Carrickbar, a beautiful, foul mouthed Georgian emigre, displaced by civil war, still carrying a bullet in her back. She sees something in Finn as well, though for the life of her she can't tell what, only that she wants it, except she'd never waste a body like hers on a man like that, would she?

Instead she schemes to bring Hermione and Finn together, before realising she wants Hermione for herself, and Finn? He'd be good as an amicably divorced ex-husband, so skipping the messy middle bit. It sounds mad, but then what's normal about the times they're living in? It sounds unlikely too, but she's played longer odds than that in the past and come out on top, so who's to say she can't pull this one off as well? Strong pain killers help her ignore all logic to the contrary, and she ploughs on to the bewilderment of all around her, especially Hermione and Finn.

An unusual love story, a story of middle aged orphans washing up in a forgotten washed up part of the world, building their own families from scratch by stitching together unfamiliar boundaries. But when living through extraordinary times, when all the simple solutions have been tried and found wanting, maybe you've got to throw away the old rules and embrace the impossible if you want a chance at survival, let alone happiness, in a world so suddenly tipped upside down.

  • affair
  • austerity
  • brexit
  • decline
  • economy
  • fiction
  • general
  • immigration
  • life
  • literary
  • love
  • marriage
  • romance
  • seaside
  • suicide
  • triangle
AniKiko AniKiko May 21, 2017
"It spoke of hopelessness, a lonely drowning", yes, there is that.
maryltabor maryltabor Nov 26, 2017
@MichaelGraeme Hermione's interior monologue, so effective here, building character and empathy. You are a find, as I have said before.
AniKiko AniKiko May 21, 2017
Great internal conversation.  I loved it.  It's like being a spy.
leahcanscience leahcanscience Jun 20, 2016
Is she talking to herself here? I like the internal dialogue in this chapter. It gives me the impression that she doesn't see enough people
tomlichtenberg tomlichtenberg Jun 18, 2016
I'm living in a seaside town these days, and recently I overheard young tourist woman say, I forgot how ugly the ocean is
leahcanscience leahcanscience Jun 20, 2016
What a great line. Actually this chapter is full of great lines. Thanks to @tomlichtenberg for recommending this book!