Reading on the Deck

The lazy, hazy days of summer beg for easy reads but the best possible option for me is easy…with a punch! The One Hundred Years of Lenni and Margot by Marianne Cronin was just the ticket on both counts.

Lenni is a 17 year old girl in hospital with “life lessening” cancer. Margot is an 83 year old woman, in the same hospital with a severe, potentially fatal heart condition. The two discover each other in The Rose Room, an art therapy room set up in the hospital for patients to participate in stress- reducing, life-enhancing artistic endeavours.

A quirky, witty teenager with a high intelligence and curiosity, Lenni, and Margot, a woman who has had an interesting life over her 83 years, are drawn to each other and begin a heart-warming friendship. Between them, they have lived 100 years and so, as a memorial to their time on earth, they decide to illustrate their 100 years through pictures. As they draw, they tell each other the stories behind the pictures and through this oral and visual journey, their relationship grows into true friendship and affection.

Not only are Lenni & Margot totally relatable, ‘New Nurse’, Paul the Porter, Nurse Jackie, Father Arthur and Pippa add another level of characterization which increases the warm-heartedness of this story.

This was a Sunday-on-the-deck kind of read which left me wanting more.

— Nancy C.