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David's Bookshop, Music & Cafe is located in Eastcheap, Letchworth Garden City, SG6 3DE
Letchworth Garden City, SG6 3DE

Salley Vickers Talks About her New Book, The Cleaner of Chartres

Salley Vickers Talks About her New Book, The Cleaner of Chartres

  • Thu Nov 08, 2012 - 19:30 pm
  • David's Bookshop

There is something special about the medieval Cathedral of Chartres, with its mismatched spires, glinting sundial, blue-lit arches and mesmerizing labyrinth, and in particular about the mysterious woman, named Agnès Morel, who is to be found cleaning it each morning.

No one quite knows where she came from – not the diffident Abbé Paul, who discovered her one morning twenty years ago, sleeping in the north porch; nor lonely Professor Jones, whose chaotic existence she helps to organise; nor Philippe Nevers, whose neurotic sister and newborn child she cares for; nor even the irreverent young restorer, Alain Fleury, who works alongside her each day and whose attention she has caught with her dark complexion, her colourful clothes and elusive manner. And yet everyone she’s encountered would surely agree that she has touched their lives in subtly transformative ways, even though they couldn’t quite say how.  Following an unexpected encounter in the Cathedral one day, though, the spectre of Agnès’ past returns, inspiring malicious speculation from the prejudiced Madame Beck and her gossipy companion Madame Picot. As the rumours grow darker, Agnès is forced to confront her history, and so the mystery of her origins finally unfolds. The Cleaner of Chartres is a compelling story of traumatic loss and second chances. Told with a sparkling wit and beguiling charm, but infused throughout with deeper truths, it speaks of the power of love and mercy to transform the tragedies of the past.

Salley Vickers was born in Liverpool and read English at Newnham College Cambridge. Her first novel, 'Miss Garnet's Angel', became an international word-of-mouth bestseller and a favourite among book clubs and reading groups. She now writes full time and lectures widely on many subjects, particularly the connections between, art, literature, psychology and religion . She is a member of PEN and the RSPB.

Tickets are £3 but are redeemable against the price of the book.