Sunday, 28 August 2011

'Love Always' by Harriet Evans - A great holiday read!

I have enjoyed all Harriet Evans' books, especially this one about how Natasha Kapoor discovers a diary written by her Aunt Cecily in 1963, the summer that she fell to her death down the cliff steps - or was she pushed?
In trying to unravel the fate of her aunt, Natasha also sorts her own life out - her unhappy marriage and her failing business.
This is a great story, set at Summercove, the family house by the sea in Cornwall and in Brick Lane, London.
I would definitely read it again.

Thursday, 11 August 2011

The Lantern by Deborah Lawrenson- Paperback or Kindle?

I've just received one of those slim cardboard packages from Amazon with an easy-open tear-off strip which revealed The Lantern, the latest book by Deborah Lawrenson which she describes as a 'modern Gothic novel set in Provence'. I can't wait!
I love the smell of cardboard and new books as I rip them open, and the breeze on my face from the creamy pages as I thumb through them. Mm! You can't get that sensory heaven from a Kindle, although it is probably exciting when it arrives, but you only get that feeling once.
I met Deborah Lawrenson at a party a few years ago, and she was very kind and helpful with suggestions on how to get my novel published. It had taken her two and a half years to get The Art of Falling into the shops because it was a new direction for her after writing three other successful books. I was very impressed and bought it from Waterstones on my way home the next day!
It tells of Isabel's search for her father, Tom. Her story is in the present and his is set in Italy at the start of World War II. In fact I liked it so much, I must get it out again and read it.
I often like to do that: read the books by a particular author one after another, and really immerse myself in their world. And of course, although we all know about the convenience of owning a Kindle: instant downloads and easy to take your library on holiday, nothing beats displaying the works of your favourite author in a colour coordinated row on your bookshelf!

Friday, 5 August 2011

Short Story Success in Writers' News!

I had a lovely surprise this morning when I opened my Writing Magazine, and found that I had been shortlisted in the Members' Club Short Story competition in Writers' News.
Ok, I didn't actually win, but every little bit of success helps!
As you can see, the story was entered in the Great Expectations competition, and that had to be its title too. I got the idea last year when I was waiting for the finalists to be announced in the Brit Writers' Awards Unpublished 2010 competition. I had got through to the third round with my novel Gipsy Moth, and was really hoping to be chosen, but I wasn't. However, always eager to use experiences in my writing, I jotted down my feelings at the time and used them as the basis for my story when the theme was announced this year in Writers' News. That is as far as it goes, the rest of the story is, of course, fiction!