*** DEBUG END ***

Out of the Mist by Lynne Chitty

03 August 2018

Fiona Hook enjoys a first novella that is set on the Isle of Skye

EIGHT years ago, the lives of Eliza and her mother, Edith, were torn apart by a savage rape. Now, the perpetrator, Eliza’s half-brother Marcus, is out of prison and heading home to the house that they shared.

Eliza hears the news as she gets off the bus on the Isle of Skye, and suddenly the trip she has dreamed of for twenty years loses its savour. She has given up on life and God, and leads a death in life between her bedsit and her library job, abandoning the poetry that she used to write. But God has not forgotten her. She lifts her eyes unto the hills and starts to feel a connection with someone or something, and the words start to flow.

There is human warmth, too, in the shape of the friendly group running the Skye Half Marathon. She meets Pete, who started running after the death of his beloved wife from cancer, and begins to thaw in the face of his uncomplicated friendliness.

This is a very cheering book, with its message that healing is always possible, even if it takes a long time. The writer’s own deep love for the island shines from the page, and carries the reader into the landscape. She is good at different voices — each character has his or her own.

At times, the author has a lovely turn of phrase. I particularly liked the image of the past receding briefy from the shore of the present, leaving pools of possibilities to be explored. She avoids the cliché of an obvious romance, but suggests that the characters’ friendship will continue to develop beyond the last page. And the villain gets his comeuppance in an unexpected and very satisfying way.

It’s a very promising first novella. I look forward to seeing the author’s gifts displayed in something longer.

Fiona Hook is a writer and EFL teacher.

Out of the Mist
Lynne Chitty
Matador £7.99

Browse Church and Charity jobs on the Church Times jobsite

Church Times Bookshop

Save money on books reviewed or featured in the Church Times. To get your reader discount:

> Click on the “Church Times Bookshop” link at the end of the review.

> Call 0845 017 6965 (Mon-Fri, 9.30am-5pm).

The reader discount is valid for two months after the review publication date. E&OE

Forthcoming Events

Green Church Awards

Awards Ceremony: 6 September 2024

Read more details about the awards


Festival of Preaching

15-17 September 2024

The festival moves to Cambridge along with a sparkling selection of expert speakers

tickets available


Inspiration: The Influences That Have Shaped My Life

September - November 2024

St Martin in the Fields Autumn Lecture Series 2024

tickets available



Festival of Faith and Literature

28 February - 2 March 2025

The festival programme is soon to be announced sign up to our newsletter to stay informed about all festival news.

Festival website


Visit our Events page for upcoming and past events 

The Church Times Archive

Read reports from issues stretching back to 1863, search for your parish or see if any of the clergy you know get a mention.

FREE for Church Times subscribers.

Explore the archive

Welcome to the Church Times


To explore the Church Times website fully, please sign in or subscribe.

Non-subscribers can read four articles for free each month. (You will need to register.)