If Tenderness Be Gold is set in 19th-century and early 20th-century northern Ontario and Manitoba. An Irish mother, an Italian herbalist, and a Scottish midwife come together on the night of a difficult birth, and the result of their union has effects that echo through the generations.
Eleanor Albanese's debut novel, If Tenderness Be Gold, is a beautiful tapestry, woven on a loom formed by the waters of Black Bay and the boreal forests of northern Ontario, its warp strung by a mother whose loneliness and love for her child dared her to befriend an outsider. Jean E. Pendziwol, author of The Lightkeepers Daughter. If Tenderness Be Gold is a poetic, painterly novel about the mysteries of family - about generational memory and all its gifts and burdens. Albanese's writing is powerful magic. Natalie Morrill, author The Ghost Keeper.