Thursday, 19 September 2019

Spotlight on Salisbury Literary Festival 2019

Next month sees the return of Salisbury Literary Festival which is now in its third year of running, it's great having a festival featuring something I love 📚 in my home city that I can support. I've already bought tickets for a couple of events on the Saturday and have a few other events that I still need to buy tickets for. Last year festival director Tom Bromley wrote a post talking about how the festival came to fruition, which you can read here, so today I have decided to shine the spotlight on a few of the events that are taking place this year (full schedule of events can be downloaded here).

The festival kicks off on Friday 18th October with three events; a Walking Book Group tour of Avebury with local archeologist and author Nicola Ford talking about the inspiration of her novel The Hidden Bones, a 'Salisbury Greats' talk at the library about Michael Gilbert, founder of the Crime Writers' Association, and the headliner event, and one my friend wants me to go to with her, is Jung Chang at Salisbury Cathedral.

Jung Chang is the author of the award-winning bestseller Wild Swans: Three Daughters of China which has sold over 13 million copies to date. Jung Chang’s latest book, published in October, is Big Sister, Little Sister, Red Sister, telling the story of the influential Soong sisters, three women who in their different ways shaped the course of modern Chinese history.

Monday, 16 September 2019

Emma's Review: An Echo of Scandal by Laura Madeline

Reviewed by Emma Crowley 
In the dead of night, with blood on her hands, she made her escape.
Accused of murder, Alejandra flees her home, escaping to the southern edge of Spain, where she faces a life of poverty and destitution.

Seduced by the power of the rich and the anonymity that waits across the water in Tangier, Ale makes a bid for a new start. But it will come at a cost: a life of deception. Because Ale's new friends want to know what she is running from, they want to know who she is and whether they can trust her.

Fifty years later, a young American writer wanders the streets of Tangier, searching for inspiration. When he stumbles across a trace of Ale's life, he finds himself tangled in a story of scandal, love and danger that has not yet reached its end.

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Sunday, 15 September 2019

Emma's Review: Meet Me in Monaco by Hazel Gaynor & Heather Webb

Reviewed by Emma Crowley 

Movie stars and paparazzi flock to Cannes for the glamorous film festival, but Grace Kelly, the biggest star of all, wants only to escape from the flash-bulbs. When struggling perfumer Sophie Duval shelters Miss Kelly in her boutique to fend off a persistent British press photographer, James Henderson, a bond is forged between the two women and sets in motion a chain of events that stretches across thirty years of friendship, love, and tragedy.

James Henderson cannot forget his brief encounter with Sophie Duval. Despite his guilt at being away from his daughter, he takes an assignment to cover the wedding of the century, sailing with Grace Kelly’s wedding party on the SS Constitution from New York. In Monaco, as wedding fever soars and passions and tempers escalate, James and Sophie—like Princess Grace—must ultimately decide what they are prepared to give up for love.

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Wednesday, 11 September 2019

Emma's Review: My Name is Eva by Suzanne Goldring

Reviewed by Emma Crowley

You can pay a terrible price for keeping a promise…

Evelyn Taylor-Clarke sits in her chair at Forest Lawns Care Home in the heart of the English countryside, surrounded by residents with minds not as sharp as hers. It would be easy to dismiss Evelyn as a muddled old woman, but her lipstick is applied perfectly, and her buttons done up correctly. Because Evelyn is a woman with secrets and Evelyn remembers everything. She can never forget the promise she made to the love of her life, to discover the truth about the mission that led to his death, no matter what it cost her…

When Evelyn’s niece Pat opens an old biscuit tin to find a photo of a small girl with a red ball entitled ‘Liese, 1951’ and a passport in another name, she has some questions for her aunt. And Evelyn is transported back to a place in Germany known as ‘The Forbidden Village,’ where a woman who called herself Eva went where no one else dared, amongst shivering prisoners, to find the man who gambled with her husband’s life…

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Sunday, 8 September 2019

Emma's Review: The Love Child by Rachel Hore

Reviewed by Emma Crowley

A young mother's sacrifice. A child's desperate search for the truth . . .
London, 1917

When nineteen-year-old Alice Copeman becomes pregnant, she is forced by her father and stepmother to give up the baby.  She simply cannot be allowed to bring shame upon her family. But all Alice can think about is the small, kitten-like child she gave away, and she mourns the father, a young soldier, so beloved, who will never have the chance to know his daughter.

Edith and Philip Burns, a childless couple, yearn for a child of their own. When they secretly adopt a baby girl, Irene, their life together must surely be complete. Irene grows up knowing that she is different from other children, but no one will tell her the full truth.

Putting hopes of marriage and children behind her, Alice embarks upon a pioneering medical career, striving to make her way in a male-dominated world. Meanwhile, Irene struggles to define her own life, eventually leaving her Suffolk home to find work in London.

As two extraordinary stories intertwine across two decades, will secrets long-buried at last come to light?

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