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Small Kindnesses [Kindle Edition]

Satya Robyn
4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (121 customer reviews)

Print List Price: $12.50
Kindle Price: $2.99
You Save: $9.51 (76%)
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  • Length: 330 pages
  • Prime members can borrow this book and read it on their devices with Kindle Owners Lending Library.
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Kindle Edition $2.99  
Paperback $10.46  
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Book Description

Leonard Mutch has just discovered his wife was lying to him for years – but can he bear to uncover the truth?

Leonard and Rose Mutch were happily married for forty years. But after her sudden death, Leonard is shocked to find a train ticket in her handbag to a town Rose had never visited. Then a letter arrives from a childhood friend of Rose’s, hinting at a past she never told him about.

Reluctantly embarking on an investigation into the life of the woman he thought he knew as well as himself, Leonard is faced with questions that threaten to destroy his happy memories. Why did Rose secretly leave work every Tuesday? Why did she tell lies about her family? And why is their daughter so desperate for him to stop digging into the past?

As his whole life threatens to unravel, Leonard must make an impossible choice – between his memories and a truth he could never have imagined…

From the bestselling author of The Most Beautiful Thing, Small Kindnesses is a gripping and ultimately life-affirming novel that explores the power of secrets and the healing qualities of love.

Small Kindnesses is by Satya Robyn (previously Fiona Robyn). Previously sold as 'The Blue Handbag'


“Robyn is the real thing. A gifted writer who understands the complexities of the human soul.” Jacqui Lofthouse

“A thoughtful and moving writer who has a great sense of human emotion.” Michael Kimball

"An entirely entrancing tale." Caroline Smailes

Product Details

  • File Size: 695 KB
  • Print Length: 330 pages
  • Publisher: Woodsmoke Press (January 16, 2014)
  • Sold by: Amazon Digital Services, Inc.
  • Language: English
  • Text-to-Speech: Enabled
  • X-Ray:
  • Word Wise: Not Enabled
  • Lending: Enabled
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #444,296 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
37 of 38 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Lovely November 21, 2012
By qangela
Format:Kindle Edition
I loved this subtle, gentle book. It's written from the point of view of Leonard, a man in his sixties, who is struggling to come to terms with the death of his wife. Leonard is a very engaging central character and I cared about him and the people around him.

The story is written in the present tense and I found myself very engaged in each moment. Leonard is a gardener and I loved seeing plants and wildlife through his eyes. Descriptions of landscape and plants pervade the book and really add to it, giving the developing plot some space to breathe and the various changing relationships a chance to `bed in'. Gardening is a strong metaphor throughout the book, with lots of healthy weeding and nurturing going on within relationships, and a few aptly-named key characters.

The book explores human frailty and pain in a sensitive, naturalistic way, allowing plenty of time for reflection. There's plenty of growth and redemption there too.

It's a satisfying, engrossing story and it's been a pleasure to read. I can really recommend it.
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24 of 24 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Beautifully Written November 19, 2012
Format:Kindle Edition
I love when I come across a book written so beautifully that it feels as though I am living in the same world as the characters involved. I could picture the gardens, feel the warmth of the tea and taste the sweetness of the cakes. I also felt a certain frustration (intended) with the characters as they hid their secrets and swept the 'messy' emotions under the rug only to be found later. Leonard is a good man, although he reminds me of the kind of man who shies away from conflict, never addressing those uncomfortable mood-swings of his wife or daughter. After finding some clues in an old handbag belonging to his deceased wife, Rose, he is confronted with the very source of these previously unexplained mood-swings. A lovely story that became a fast read as I found myself unable to put it down until I learned the real secret.
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22 of 22 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Nice read November 18, 2012
By Sarita
Format:Kindle Edition
When I started reading this book I was enchanted with the writing. As I continued reading I could relate to Leonard and his feelings. When I found out the secret that Rose had kept in her heart I could relate to her also! I truly enjoyed reading this book. Please give this book a chance to give you something to think about and touch your heart.
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7 of 8 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Kindness is NOT overrated November 15, 2012
Format:Kindle Edition
What would you do if you suddenly found that the person you were married to for many years had a secret life, a life that didn't gel with you knew her/him to be? That is the premise behind Fiona Robyn's "The Blue Handbag", now re-titled "Small Kindnesses". Leonard, still grieving for his wife Rose, finds a ticket in a handbag of hers that seems inexplicable to him. Leonard is a father, grandfather, friend, husband, and most importantly, a good man. Three years after his wife Rose has died, he is almost ready to move on until he discovers the mystery of the wife he knew so well. Weaving an intriguing plot with great characters, Robyn has produced a novel that is a fine read about people we'd like to know. Pickles the dog is a personal favorite. This novel is definitely worth reading--check it out.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A Good Read November 25, 2012
Format:Kindle Edition
I enjoyed this book from beginning to end. The characters were engaging and the story heart-warming. I thoroughly recommend it. A good Christmas present!!
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars A gentle mystery with depth November 25, 2012
Format:Kindle Edition
This is a really lovely, gentle story, and it is written with such beautifully descriptive language that reading it is a real treat. The mystery in this story revolves around a widower who has discovered that there were things about his late wife that he did not know, and he struggles to put together the clues that have been left behind to figure out what secrets she had hidden from him. In the course of this investigation, he winds up exploring his memories of his relationship with his late wife, his relationship with his daughter, his daughter's relationships with her husband and children, and his relationships with various friends and co-workers. All of these are very beautifully and realistically drawn with all of the complexities of real life.

While the mystery is what pulls the reader into the story and keeps the pages turning, these explorations of relationships and the small kindnesses that are so necessary to keep relationships alive are the real treasure of this novel. Gardeners will also find the descriptions of gardens and plants to be a treat!
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Wonderful Read March 4, 2013
By SunnyAZ
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
This is a wonderful, engaging story. I loved the story's flow mixed with mystery, hardship, and tenderness. The characters in the book are really believable and were easy for me to relate to. I would highly recommend this book.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A tale that lingers January 27, 2013
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
The story develops as we learn with Leonard from the emergence of a shiny blue purse 3 years after his wife's death, that there is a secret of immense depth which alters his life. Intended or not, surely there is irony in that Leonard, a devoted gardener by trade and avocation, has had a wife named Rose and a new friend through a quirk of fate, Lily. Through the introduction of Lily who was a childhood friend of Rose and initiates an acquaintance with the widower, Leonard learns of a secret held by his wife that blights his life and that of their only daughter. This reaches out like a hydra to coil around the daughter's marriage as well. The secret had been known to her in a corrupted form. Not until it is discovered after a lengthy search, are the father and daughter freed to love each other again and understand their wife/mother. Rose's ultimately unsuccessful attempt to conceal something very important is resolved through the tender tenaciousness of Lily and the sweetness of Leonard, both of whom are caring people whose kindness does echo and embrace all those near and dear to them. A lovely read.
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
4.0 out of 5 stars Four Stars
I really enjoyed it.
Published 26 days ago by Carol
3.0 out of 5 stars Slow and predictable
A little slow and predictable but overall ok
Published 29 days ago by Melinda Sides
3.0 out of 5 stars a thoughtful read
I really liked the main character and his love of gardening I just thought there was a bit of a drag in the story and I began to lose interest.
Published 3 months ago by Barbara Grossman
5.0 out of 5 stars What a lovely story...
Leonard's happy life wasn't what he thought when he finds a clue after his beloved wife, Rose, dies. Some know more than they're telling, including his harried daughter Raine. Read more
Published 3 months ago by wanda
5.0 out of 5 stars Good read
Loved the book. You l ended I t put it down. Highly recommend it. Don't know what else to say :)
Published 8 months ago by mom 2 boys
4.0 out of 5 stars Touching.
I found it a moving and highly personal book. I think the events are not very realistic, how this could have happened without anybody noticing, but all in all the development of... Read more
Published 8 months ago by Irene Kranenburg
5.0 out of 5 stars A wonderful story.
I so enjoyed this book. I loved the descriptiveness of the gardens and the way the main character worked his way around and toward problem solving. Read more
Published 8 months ago by Barbara
4.0 out of 5 stars Homey in a Brit way
The quaintness of English terminology makes for an enjoyable read. Truly homespun, ensures easy reading and, gosh, the author certainly knows her flower names. Read more
Published 9 months ago by Doness
3.0 out of 5 stars Characters were very emotional...
Maybe it's just me but the (British) men (and most of the women) in this story were pretty much all wimps. Very emotional with lots of outbursts and tears. Read more
Published 10 months ago by Angela@Florida
3.0 out of 5 stars Small Kindness
Easy reading and nice gentle story about finding the answer to a secret. Sad that the secret was felt necessary to be kept a secret
Published 11 months ago by Margaret Saunders
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More About the Author

Satya Robyn lives in the green skirts of the Malvern hills in the UK. Her new novel 'Afterwards' is out now.

Her last novel 'The Most Beautiful Thing' is a Kindle best-seller and follows 14 year old Joe's adventures in Amsterdam with his chaotic aunt Nel.

Her previous novels are 'Thaw', 'Small Kindnesses' and 'The Letters' and her other books include 'A Year of Questions: How to slow down and fall in love with life'.

She runs the mindful writing company 'Writing Our Way Home' which she co-founded with her husband Kaspa. She is the inventor of the short mindful writing form, 'small stones'.

She also works as a psychotherapist and is a Pureland Buddhist priest.

She loves growing vegetables, paying attention, vegan cupcakes, goldfinches, earl grey & her three cats, Fatty, Tsuki & Roshi.

Find out more at

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