The Restoration of Emily


Architect and single mother Emily Harada has structured a well-ordered existence around her work restoring historic houses and the parenting of her teenage son, Jesse. But her carefully laid foundation cracks when she develops a nagging ache in her shoulder, has her architectural integrity questioned, and feels shut out by Jesse’s assertions of independence. What she doesn’t need right now - or does she? - are the romantic attentions of a former student, an attractive but much younger man. Or for an old acquaintance to resurface with questions about a Bronze Age artifact that Emily might have, uh, stolen, once upon a time, in her youth.

Emily, her son, and the 2,000-year-old artifact all come of age in this funny and moving novel about motherhood, middle age, and one woman’s attempt to restore herself to a state of grace that combines the best elements of past and present, old and new.


With much grace and tremendous wit, Kim Moritsugu's The Restoration of Emily moves the reader skilfully through the fractured but colliding time between youth and middle age. Emily is masterfully drawn and this is a delightful book.

Michelle Berry, author of Blind Crescent

Kim Moritsugu was short listed for the Arthur Ellis Best Crime Novel award for The Glenwood Treasure. She has a talent for surprising in a novel that is about saving the best elements of the past and present, the old and the new.

The Sun-Times

"Kim Moritsugu's The Restoration of Emily is a very funny, sometimes suspenseful novel for grown-ups. Women of a certain age with adolescent sons will find it particularly appealing. So will those who have had the delightful experience of being attracted to a younger man and having that attraction returned.

...Moritsugu is a pro when it comes to telling a story in a fresh and engaging way. I stayed up late to finish it...

Mary Soderstrom, Quill & Quire, June 2006

A very funny, sometimes suspenseful novel for grown-ups ... Moritsugu writes with dash and irony.

Quill & Quire

A fun, light, and adept piece of writing.

Globe and Mail

Funny, wise and sharp, this is a character all of us can see a little bit of ourselves in.


She has a talent for surprising

Andrew Armitage, The Sun Times

Entertaining ...insightful exploration of the mother-son bond

Books In Canada

About the Author

Kim Moritsugu

Posted by Kendra on December 6, 2014
Kim Moritsugu photo

Kim Moritsugu

Kim Moritsugu’s six previously published novels include The Glenwood Treasure (shortlisted for the Arthur Ellis Best Crime Novel Award), The Restoration of Emily (serialized on CBC Radio), and The Oakdale Dinner Club. She recaps TV shows online as The Hungry Novelist and lives in Toronto.