Tea with Mr. Rochester by Frances Towers: Lucinda

Tea with Mr. Rochester

Lucinda, the shortest story in the collection, is another tale with a supernatural vibe. In fact, Lucinda is the family phantom at Paigles where the Quarles lives. Now Mrs. Quarles, mother of Venetia, Theodora, Clare, Duncan, and Lewis is not very happy about her children’s fascination with Lucinda. She thinks her children are “possessed” by Lucinda, but in the eyes of her children, Lucinda is what makes life in Paigles interesting! So Mrs. Quarles, weary of all that, tells her children Lucinda was merely an invention of a one-time guest at Paigles.

But, of course, her children don’t believe her! Lewis thinks their mother came up with that story because she doesn’t want to deal with an “incorporeal rival” in her own home. And Venetia thinks their mother is the reason why they have never seen Lucinda – Mrs. Quarles with her commonsense being like an “electric light in a room which a moonbeam is trying to enter.” But, in the end, we realize somehow her children are wrong for Mrs. Quarles has or thinks she has her own little secret…

Lucinda, for me, had both funny and sad moments. I loved how each of the Quarles siblings went on to describe what Lucinda is to them. To Venetia, Lucinda is poetry; to Duncan, music; to Clare, the past; to Theodora, her little helper in transforming life into drama; and to Lewis, a woman with whom he has committed adultery with in his heart! ūüėÄ So Lucinda is probably one of the weirdest stories in the collection, but for a ghost story, I enjoyed it quite a bit!


  1. This reminded me of the Canterville Ghost. ūüôā

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I’ve only read The Picture of Dorian Gray by Wilde. Must check out The Canterville Ghost. ūüôā

      Liked by 2 people

  2. This sounds so good.

    Liked by 1 person

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