Thursday, December 01, 2016

Best seller at Kobo!

Online book store, Kobo, has listed my novel, Where Dragonflies Hover, as one of its best sellers for 2016. I'm was so excited to hear that!

Sometimes a glimpse into the past can help make sense of the future … Everyone thinks Lexi is crazy when she falls in love with Hollingsworth House a crumbling old Georgian mansion in Yorkshire and nobody more so than her husband, Dylan. But there’s something very special about the place, and Lexi can sense it.
Whilst exploring the grounds she stumbles across an old diary and, within its pages, she meets Allie an Australian nurse working in France during the First World War.
Lexi finally realises her dream of buying Hollingsworth but her obsession with the house leaves her marriage in tatters. In the lonely nights that follow, Allie’s diary becomes Lexi’s companion, comforting her in moments of darkness and pain. And as Lexi reads, the nurse’s scandalous connection to the house is revealed …

You can purchase a copy from  Where Dragonflies Hover from UK Kobo here. And also at other Kobo sites

Friday, November 11, 2016

Lest We Forget

For Australia, the First World War remains the costliest conflict in terms of deaths and casualties. From a population of fewer than five million, 416,809 men enlisted, of whom more than 60,000 were killed and 156,000 wounded, gassed, or taken prisoner.

There are so many statistics that I could list but the general feeling should be of overwhelming gratitude for all those who fought and helped to keep us free.

Sunday, November 06, 2016

Remembrance Day - Broken Hero - WWII novel

On of my favourite eras to write in is World War I, however, I have written a book set in World War II.
Broken Hero was a great story to write. Audrey and Jake are wonderful characters, each with their own issues to overcome.
I hope readers enjoy it too as they commemorate Remebrance Day this year.

Audrey Pearson's life changed dramatically when WWII broke out and her large home, Twelve Pines on the East Yorkshire coast, became a convalescence home for wounded soldiers. Her life is no longer lavish with entertainment, beautiful clothes and surrounded by a loving family. Soldiers, physically and mentally wounded now fill her home. The smell of disinfectant replaces her mother's perfume and gone are the friends and acquaintances - instead nurses roam the hallways. 
Captain Jake Harding, a doctor training in psychiatry arrives at Twelve Pines. Audrey immediately finds herself attracted to the Captain, but he is remote towards her. Puzzled by his cold behaviour, Audrey tries to learn more about the handsome Captain. He reveals that he's lost a wife and baby in childbirth and refuses to ever remarry. 
However, despite this, Audrey believes she can change his mind and make him aware he doesn't have to spend his life alone.The ice around Jake's heart begins to melt. For years he has rejected the possibility of finding love again because of the pain it caused him before, but the beautiful Audrey shows him her love and she needs someone to love her in return. 
Could he honestly walk away from her, from the love that could be his? 

Available for Kindle and all other online forms of reading devices.
Amazon USA
Amazon UK

Also available in paperback
Amazon USA
Amazon UK

Wednesday, November 02, 2016

Guest author: Ginger Monette

My guest author is historical author, Ginger Monette.

The teacher always learns the most. And in homeschooling her children, Ginger Monette learned all the history she missed in school. Now she's hooked—on writing and World War I.
 When not writing, Ginger enjoys dancing on the treadmill, watching period dramas, public speaking, and reading—a full-length novel every Sunday afternoon.
 Her WW1 flash fiction piece, Flanders Field of Grey, won Charlotte Mecklenburg Library's 2015 Picture This grand prize.
 Ginger lives in Charlotte, North Carolina, where she happily resides with her husband, three teenagers, and two loyal dogs.


Darcy’s Hope ~ Beauty from Ashes,
A WW1 Pride & Prejudice Variation

Escape to the era of Downton Abbey and experience all the drama of World War 1 alongside literature’s iconic Elizabeth Bennet & Fitzwilliam Darcy. You'll watch their tender love unfold as they learn to work together and reconcile their differences amidst the carnage of war.

1916. World War I has turned French chateaux into bloody field hospitals, British gentlemen into lice-infested soldiers, and left Elizabeth Bennet's life in tatters.

Her father is dead and her home destroyed. Never again will Elizabeth depend on a man to secure her future!

But when an opportunity arises to advance her dreams of becoming a doctor, she is elated—until he arrives....

Heartbroken. Devastated. Captain Fitzwilliam Darcy is left rejected by the woman he loved and reeling from the slaughter of his men on the battlefield. “Enough!” Darcy vows. “No more sentimental attachments!”

But arriving at a field hospital to pursue a covert investigation, Darcy discovers his beloved Elizabeth training with a dashing American doctor and embroiled in an espionage conspiracy.

With only a few months to expose the plot, Darcy is forced to grapple with his feelings for Elizabeth while uncovering the truth. Is she indeed innocent? Darcy can only hope….

Purchase Links:
 Amazon UK

Friday, October 28, 2016

Next writing project...

Aside from working and normal life, I am busy writing the third book in the Kitty McKenzie's series. This book concentrates on Kitty's grandchildren, and other previous character's grandchildren, who find themselves confronted by World War I.

So far I am really enjoying writing it, but as always research is slowing me down a little. Not that I mind really, I find research fascinating and interesting, especially war research. I'm always in awe when reading about what our brave soldiers went through.

So far, I have researched:
 Australian WWI uniforms
When the first bridge in Grafton, NSW was built
1914 cars
Ranks of soldiers in the Australian army.
Gallipoli and the conditions endured by the Australian soldiers who served there.

I'm only on chapter 4, so you can see there's a long way to go and a lot more research to do.

I'm guest blogging!

Today, I'm guest blogging at Karen King's blog, where I am talking about my latest book, Where Dragonflies Hover, and also talking about writing, etc.
Do drop by!

Friday, October 14, 2016

Going to be Published in Norway!!

It is with great excitement that I can now reveal I am going to be published in Norway with my split era novel, Where Dragonflies Hover.

The translation rights have been bought for Where Dragonflies Hover by Norwegian publisher Cappelen Damm AS.
This is an excellent opportunity for one of my books to reach an ever wider audience by being translated into another language.
I am so thrilled with this new development and am looking forward to seeing this new partnership grow.

More information about the trade deal can be found here.

Sometimes a glimpse into the past can help make sense of the future …Everyone thinks Lexi is crazy when she falls in love with Hollingsworth House – a crumbling old Georgian mansion in Yorkshire – and nobody more so than her husband, Dylan. But there’s something very special about the place, and Lexi can sense it.

Whilst exploring the grounds she stumbles across an old diary and, within its pages, she meets Allie – an Australian nurse working in France during the First World War.

Lexi finally realises her dream of buying Hollingsworth but her obsession with the house leaves her marriage in tatters. In the lonely nights that follow, Allie’s diary becomes Lexi’s companion, comforting her in moments of darkness and pain. And as Lexi reads, the nurse’s scandalous connection to the house is revealed …

Amazon UK

Amazon USA

Amazon Australia

Thursday, October 13, 2016

2 Books I've recently read.

Showcasing two books I have recently read.

Circling the Sun by Paula McLain.
Brought to Kenya from England as a child and then abandoned by her mother, Beryl is raised by both her father and the native Kipsigis tribe who share his estate. Her unconventional upbringing transforms Beryl into a bold young woman with a fierce love of all things wild and an inherent understanding of nature’s delicate balance. But even the wild child must grow up, and when everything Beryl knows and trusts dissolves, she is catapulted into a string of disastrous relationships.

Beryl forges her own path as a horse trainer, and her uncommon style attracts the eye of the Happy Valley set, a decadent, bohemian community of European expats who also live and love by their own set of rules. But it’s the ruggedly charismatic Denys Finch Hatton who ultimately helps Beryl navigate the uncharted territory of her own heart. The intensity of their love reveals Beryl’s truest self and her fate: to fly.

My thoughts;
I really enjoyed reading this book. Set primarily in Kenya, Africa, with little bits in England, this story is based on a true person, and is a lot like the book, Out of Africa. 
The author has done a great job in the telling of Beryl's life and has also given the reader a glimpse into 1920s colonial life in Africa. The descriptions of Africa makes you feel like you're there.
Highly recommended.

Savages by Shirley Conran.
When a group of mining executives bring their wives to an island paradise, vacation is not on their minds. But in their greedy rush to claim the prize, the men fail to take into account a general who takes control of the island and brutally executes all of them. Leaving their wives to fend for themselves in the jungle.

My thoughts:
Read this book twice, twenty years apart, and still thoroughly enjoyed it. Great characterisation. Wonderful descriptions, good drama and action and a plot that keeps you turning the pages. Brilliant.

Friday, October 07, 2016

4 countries in 3 weeks!

My lovely daughter and niece from Australia have been visiting me and my husband for the last three weeks and we have been touring quite a bit.
We managed to fit in seeing Munich, Germany, Salzburg, Austria, Sterling and Edinburgh, Scotland and many, many places in England such as Brighton, Birmingham, London, Lincoln, Dover and Canterbury and lots of other places in between.

Salzburg, Austria

White cliffs of Dover

Westminster, London

Brighton sea front

Leeds Castle, Kent

Saturday, September 03, 2016

Free Book Magazine

Lovely review for Where Dragonflies Hover in the IndTale magazine.

This magazine is free to download and read. It's got a lot of good articles and news about authors and books.

Tuesday, August 02, 2016

Author Library talk at Hatfield Library

Last Saturday I went to a library in Hatfield (near Doncaster, South Yorkshire) to listen to my friend and fellow author Lynda Stacey give a talk about her debut novel, House of Secrets.

Lynda and I are published by the same publisher, Choc Lit, and we live close to each other so it seemed natural to go and support her.

Generously, Lynda asked me if I wanted to be a part of the talk in a small way, which I agreed to, despite being full of cold. After her talk, Lynda introduced me as an author to the gathering at the library and I was able to share her spotlight for a few moments to talk about my books. I had brought only one copy of some of my books, but they received some lovely attention, which I was so happy to see. In fact one lady, named Sylvia, asked if she could buy a copy each of Kitty McKenzie and the sequel Kitty McKenzie's Land. She also asked me to sign them.

My thanks, of course, go to Lynda Stacey and the ladies at the Hatfield Library.

A photo of myself and Sylvia holding her copy of Kitty McKenzie.

Thursday, July 28, 2016

1st Anniversary spent in York

Recently, my husband and I celebrated our 1st anniversary, and we did that in the beautiful city of York, in Yorkshire.
First, we walked around York centre to see the sights before having a beautiful meal at Middlethorpe Hall. The following the day we visited Castle Howard and Yorkshire Bird Centre.
It was a wonderful weekend with the sun shining the whole time!

Clifford's Tower, York

York Minster

One of the castle wall's gates

Having drinks on the terrace at Middlethorpe Hall

The lovely Middlethorpe Hall

The grounds at Middlethorpe Hall

Middlethorpe Hall

Fountains at Castle Howard

Castle Howard in the sun

The back of Castle Howard

The view from the back of the castle

The famous dome rebuilt after fire in 1942

The impressive hall at Castle Howard

If you are interested in visiting Yorkshire, I do recommend seeing York and all its attractions, plus the beautiful stately homes surrounding it.

Thursday, June 30, 2016

100 Year Anniversary of the Battle of the Somme

I am a lover of history and I have a special interest in WWI. I'm not a scholar or an historian. I write stories. I would have liked to have had a career as a WWI historian. Instead, I feature it in my writing.
Books about WWI sit on my bookshelves, I read them for research, and every time I look at them I am in awe of what those men and women went through - the first world war.

It was a time of new awakenings. The world had never experienced anything on such a grand scale before. Wars had been fought before, but they were country against country. This time, this war, it was united armies fighting across vast areas, something not ever seen or done in history.

I can't imagine, or though I do try, how the people felt at this time. Each side believed it was in the right. I don't get into the politics of that era. I believe that unless you lived in that period with the mind set belonging to that era, then we can only surmise how they thought and why.
I prefer to concentrate on the effects of what was happening to the common people.
When I am writing about the war in my stories, I hope I can capture the feeling of what it was like to be in that world at that time.  There was fear, certainly, but also hope and belief in that they were all fighting for the right cause.

My research is based on the English and Australian people and armies. I am Australian born to English parents and I've attended many ANZAC parades and services on ANZAC day in Australia. However, my heritage is completely British and Irish. I had ancestors who fought and died in WWI. I was amazed to find, while researching my family's genealogy, that one my mother's side, there were great + uncles who fought - six brothers from West Yorkshire went to war, and surprisingly four came home as far as I can find out by the records so far. They bet the odds, but still, that family, my family, lost two, maybe three, young men.

Alfred Ellis - King's Own Yorkshire Light Infantry
Died - 2 May 1915

Arthur Ellis - King's Own Yorkshire Light Infantry
Died - 1 July 1916

Arthur died on the first day at the Battle of the Somme. One of the worst battled with the biggest loss of men in British military history. You can find out more about the battle here.

WWI is, without doubt, a changing point in history. A time when women were asked to take the roles only held by men. Women worked in factories, on the land, learned to drive ambulances, became battlefield nurses. They stood up and were accounted for. No longer told to stay by the kitchen sink and look after the children, they had a job to do - they kept the country going.
Strong women and brave men.
We, the future generations, should be so proud of them, our ancestors, for fighting to stay alive, both at home and on the battlefield.

As the years roll by and WWI becomes even more distant, a mere event in history, we should never forget such courageous people who suffered, who buckled down, who stuck together, who got on with the job they were asked to do. They saved us from tyranny. They saved us from invasion. They fought for their country to keep it safe and free.

We should never ever forget their sacrifices.

 We should, and always continue to, educate the younger generations that they live this wonderful carefree existence because of the people who fought, and those that died - for us.

Lest We Forget