Natural Elements

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Vintage Books, 2010 - Fiction - 397 pages
3 Reviews
In this moving, layered novel of memory and family, celebrated author Richard Mason tells the story of a mother and daughter, one caught in the past, one racing toward the future.

Joan is eighty years old, a gifted amateur pianist who can no longer play because of her arthritic hands. Joan's daughter, Eloise, is an ambitious hedge fund manager who has decided to move her mother to an assisted-living facility. As a last hurrah, Eloise plans a trip to Joan's childhood home in South Africa. What Joan discovers there summons long-buried secrets and opens up an entirely new world. Natural Elements is a dazzling tale of history and longing, and the high-stakes, full-tilt embrace of life.

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User Review  - porch_reader - LibraryThing

This is a rich story, with layers of characters and secrets, time periods and struggles, places and relationships, all tied together beautifully. At the center of this story are Joan and her daughter ... Read full review

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User Review  - CarolynSchroeder - LibraryThing

This was a rather interesting, different novel, but it tried to be too many things at one time. There are many intersecting stories from the past and present, and also amongst various family members ... Read full review

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About the author (2010)

Richard Mason was born in Johannesburg, South Africa, and grew up there and in London. In 1999, Mason started the Kay Mason Foundation (, which helps disadvantaged teenagers in South Africa attend the country's best schools. Mason lives in Glasgow, Scotland.

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