Poppy’s future may be full of promise, but there’s a hole in her past and it’s getting in the way. On her family tree there’s a grandma called Sorrel Golding, but is she alive or dead? When she visits Sorrel’s sister, Great Aunt Lanky, at her donkey sanctuary, she hopes to find the truth. There among the donkey graves she meets sixteen-year-old Kane, whose muck-raking and feed-mixing are described as rehabilitation, and who is almost as mysterious as Poppy’s past. Much as Poppy loves her sad and troubled father, she’s determined to uncover all the secrets he won’t share. But she is unprepared for the first ghostly encounter, in the village school, with her great, great grandmother, Tamarisk the rebel. It’s the first of many, but as she meets the remarkable women who were flower girls before her, she still feels a long way from the answer to the question that matters most. Poppy is falling in love, but Kane has his own quest and different shadows.
TRACES is about the power of the past, about damage and healing – or love, ghosts and donkeys.