THE LOTUS CUP by Jane Louise Curry


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A painfully shy teen realizes her extraordinary talent for pottery-making and becomes more socially adept as a result in this well-written if slightly specialized novel. During a class trip to a local ceramics museum, Cordelia (Corry) Tipson views some Lotus Ware pottery made by her great-grandfather Lucas Tipson's now-defunct company and sees a young woman in a photo whom she strongly resembles. Corry knows little about her family's past, and the museum visit sparks her interest. Later, Tip, an attractive new boy in school, reveals that he and Corry are half-cousins, sharing the same great-grandfather. The girl in the photo is Corry's great-grandmother, Cordelia; Tip is descended from Lucas' second wife. Tip has run away from his latest boarding school and is living alone in his great-grandmother's house. He shows Corry some Tipson family memorabilia, including a smashed Lotus Ware cup. Corry, who has become intensely involved in pottery-making, tries (unsuccessfully) to restore the cup. She receives an assist with her work from Tip and her old friend, Don, and is dismayed when both boys fall in love with her. At first, shy Corry avoids the two completely, but as her confidence grows through artistic self-expression, she is finally able to tell them she just wants to be friends. By novel's end, some family mysteries are solved and Corry fires a successful replica of the Lotus Cup. Interested readers will learn a great deal about pottery-making here; those not into the subject may simply skip over the craft detail. However, both will enjoy the novel's likable characters and well-conceived plot, and will also get a good sense of what it takes to be an artist.

Pub Date: March 1st, 1986
Publisher: Atheneum