#Blogtour The Complete Fairy Stories of Oscar Wilde illustrated by Philippe Jullian

It’s a pleasure to take part in the Blogtour The Complete Fairy Stories of Oscar Wilde illustrated by Philippe Jullian.

‘The complete collection, first published in 1952 with exquisite illustrations by the celebrated artist Philippe Jullian, republished in a beautiful giftable edition.’  

About the Author

Born in Dublin in 1854, Oscar Wilde was an Irish wit, playwright and poet best remembered for his only novel, The Picture of Dorian Gray (1891), and his social comedies including The Importance of Being Earnest (1895). He published two volumes of beloved fairy tales. He was educated at Trinity College, Dublin and Magdalen College, Oxford. In 1884 he married Constance Lloyd, and his two sons were born in 1885 and 1886. Wilde died in Paris in 1900.

About the book

For nearly 150 years, the classic fairy stories of Oscar Wilde have been cherished by readers of all ages. Rediscover all nine of the stories first published in The Happy Prince and other stories (1888) and A House of Pomegranates (1891) in this beautiful new edition of Duckworth’s exquisite 1952 complete collection, featuring intricate illustrations by the celebrated twentieth-century artist and aesthete Phillippe Jullian, and an afterword by Wilde’s son Vyvyan Holland.

Review

I’ve read Wilde’s fairy stories before, quite often actually. Personally, I think they are exquisite, although Dorian Gray tends to get more attention overall, these are such memorable and often emotional stories. They are drawn from the ingrained folklore and stories Oscar grew up with. This is the 1952 edition republished, it contains beautiful illustrations by Philippe Jullian.

There is an afterword – a critical note – written by Wilde’s son Vyvyan Holland, which gives insight into the inspiration behind these fairy stories. It might have made more sense to put it in the front, however this way you experience the story and draw your own conclusions. Either way it’s a fascinating insight.

It’s evident in these stories how deeply Wilde was able to connect with the emotions of his fellow humans, especially with those they like to keep hidden away from the world. He lays bare the vulnerability, the harsh truth and just how disconnected we can all be from each other, ergo capable of hurting each other and creating wounds that never quite heal.

It’s gorgeous edition, one I wouldn’t hesitate to buy for others. Side note – I just love The Happy Prince.

Buy The Complete Fairy Stories of Oscar Wilde at Amazon Uk or Buy via Duckworth Books.

#Blogtour The No-Hopers Christmas Club by Geraldine Ryan

 It’s my turn on the Blogtour The No-Hopers Christmas Club by Geraldine Ryan.

About the Author

Geraldine Ryan is a proud Northerner who has spent most of her life in Cambridge – the one with the punts. She holds a degree in Scandinavian Studies, but these days only puts it to use when identifying which language is being spoken among the characters of whatever Scandi drama is currently showing on TV. 

For many years, she worked as a teacher of English and of English as a second or foreign language, in combination with rearing her four children, all of whom are now grown-up, responsible citizens. Her first published story appeared in My Weekly in 1993. Since then, her stories have appeared in Take a Break, Fiction Feast and Woman’s Weekly, as well as in women’s magazines abroad. 

She has also written two young adult novels – Model Behaviour (published by Scholastic) and The Lies and Loves of Finn (Channel 4 Books.) She plans for Riding Pillion with George Clooney to be the first of several short story anthologies. 

Keep up to date with Geraldine’s news, be the first to hear about her new releases and read exclusive content by signing up to her monthly newsletter Turning the Page. By adding your details, you’ll also receive a free short story. Use this link to subscribe: Turningthepage. Follow @GeraldineRyan on Twitter, or Facebook geraldineryanwriter

About the book

As warming as a mince pie and a glass of sherry, these eighteen festive-themed shorts are just waiting to be unwrapped.

• A lonely dog shelter volunteer battles to find new homes for her long-time canine residents while realising her own future is just as uncertain. As the new year approaches, can a fellow animal lover give her the fresh start she so wants for her dogs.

• A widowed grandmother prepares to reunite with her forbidden first love, only to discover the grand country pile from where he’s sent her a Christmas card isn’t quite what it seems.

• A single woman finally meets a man to couple up with over the festive season, but will the eccentric mistress of her late father destroy her plans?

• An ambitious 20-something attends a lavish Christmas party with only one aim – to bag a rich husband. But her plans are derailed when a troubling connection with the aristocrat she’s set her sights on is revealed.

Geraldine Ryan is a prolific short-story writer whose work has appeared in Woman’s Weekly and Take a Break’s Fiction Feast magazines. This yuletide collection follows hot on the heels of her first published anthology Riding Pillion with George Clooney. While Christmas comes but once a year, these moving and humorous tales will stay with you for a lifetime.

Review

If you take as a theme – It’s a Wonderful Life, where the balance between hope, dismay, carrying on or giving up is often just a moment of clarity or reflection. For me this was at the core of these short stories. Perspective is everything. Allowing yourself to take a different turn in the road. 

This is a collection of what appears to be cosy stories, but if you look close enough you can see the glimpses of human nature – good, bad, ugly and even the slightly messy. You can see the moments where the roads collide, and decisions must be made, which is quintessentially the way the majority of us live our lives.

I’d recommend this to readers who want a read that wanders through a variety of emotional depth. Short glimpses of situations and lives centred around the festive season. A story for everyone, and perhaps even some that will jolt memories, make you smile or vanish into the short interludes.

Buy The No-Hopers Christmas Club at Amazon Uk or go to Goodreads for any other retailer.  Publisher: ‎Wrate’s Publishing, pub date 14 Nov 2022. Buy at Amazon com.

#Blogtour The Word is Love by Florence Keeling

 It’s my turn on the Blogtour The Word is Love by Florence Keeling.

About the Author

I was born in Coventry but now live in Nuneaton. I married the love of my life over 20 years ago and we have two almost grown up children. We share our lives with two mad dogs as well.

Writing is a great passion of mine, that one day I hope to be able to turn into a career but until that day comes, I will continue working in accounts and payroll. I also write for children as Lily Mae Walters. Follow @KeelingFlorence on Twitter or Insta – florence.keeling

About the book

Lucky in life but unlucky in love, Lucy Greenfield owns a successful carriage business along with her best friend Max, and they have never been busier since their shire horses gained fame from their roles in the hit movie A Little in Love.

Too busy for romance, Lucy is surprisingly swept off her feet when Spencer arrives seeking help with his horse, and something more from Lucy. As quickly as Lucy falls, she wonders if all is not as it seems. Max can prove it, but that means he will have to express his true feelings for Lucy.

Relationships are strained as secrets unravel, and Lucy needs to solve the riddle of words to best describe how she feels… For her best friend.

Together, they must overcome what’s keeping them apart before it’s too late, if they are going to realise that the word is love.

Review

Lucy and Max – it seems as if they have been friends forever. They have a great working relationship and Max has become part of the family over the years. The family business is thriving since their shire horses became a fan favourite after featuring in a hit movie, a romance no less.

The carriage business becomes a way to deliver the dream, the perception of perfection and a happily ever after. It also attracts quite a varied type of clientele, such as Spencer the entitled toff, who charms Lucy in an instant. It jolts Max into facing the reality of losing a friend or perhaps it’s more about losing someone who means something more to him than just a friend.

It’s very much a tale about not realising what you have until the possibility of losing it all becomes a reality. Taking people and relationships for granted, because the assumption is that will always be there for you. The truth is people aren’t always on the same wavelength when it comes to love.

It’s a lovely story with potential for expansion. The horses and the family business could be a great source of material, especially if they are at a different wedding each weekend. It could do with a little more emotional depth, but light and breezy is also a way to go.

Buy The Word is Love at Amazon Uk or go to Goodreads for any other retailer. Publisher: ‎Parcel & Page pub date 8 Nov. 2022. Buy at Amazon com.

#Blogtour The Summer Escape by Hannah Ellis

It’s my turn on the Blogtour The Summer Escape by Hannah Ellis, the third book in the Isles of Scilly series.

About the Author

Hannah Ellis spent many years working in childcare before deciding she’d like to write books. When she’s not busy writing she likes to read, drink tea and eat chocolate. She also enjoys yoga and jogging. 

Follow @BooksEllis on Twitter, Insta @authorhannahellis or FB authorhannahellis

About the book

Single-mother Beth desperately needs a break. Grieving the loss of her mother, she sets off to the Isles of Scilly with her five-year-old daughter, Ellie.

Their holiday cottage is utterly charming, but it’s meeting Trystan – the owner of the cottage – that makes Beth’s stay so perfect.

When their holiday fling starts to feel like something more, she knows she’s in trouble. Her life is in Plymouth, while he lives in London. Besides, Trystan has already admitted he’s not ready for a family.

Is he prepared to take a leap of faith for Beth and Ellie? And with the odds stacked against them, can they find a way to make their relationship last beyond the lazy days of summer?

Review

Ellie sort of features as the cheerful and adorable conduit. You can’t help but love her charm, innocence and the way she has no filter, and no trouble letting people in. It makes it easier for those around her, like her mother, to connect with others when their gut instinct is to hesitate and block everyone. An otherwise lost opportunity becomes a possibility instead.

In essence that is the way Beth and Trystan meet, and slowly but surely something grows between them. But it’s a summer holiday, a friendship forged within beautiful surroundings, and a family willing to take both Beth and Ellie in and treat them like part of the family too. That’s one choice and the other is home, friends and family that are waiting for them to return.

It’s a lovely cosy romance with plenty of moments of emotional turmoil – the type any reader could and probably has experienced. Loss, grief, and doubt. Feeling lost and yet having to be the stable anchor for someone you love, in this Beth for her child.

There was a part in the last chapter that felt a little rushed, but then I wondered whether that could possibly be a lead-in for a part in the fourth book in the series. Overall, it’s a pleasant read I would recommend to other readers.

Buy The Summer Escape at Amazon Uk or go to Goodreads for any other retailer. Publisher: ‎Hannah Ellis pub date 27 Oct. 2022. Buy at Amazon com.

#Blogtour The Cruise by Catherine Cooper

It’s a pleasure to take part in the Blogtour The Cruise by Catherine Cooper.

About the Author

Catherine Cooper is a freelance journalist writing for many national newspapers and magazines, specialising in travel. She also makes regular appearances as a talking head on daytime TV. She lives in France with her husband and two teenage children. 

Her debut thriller The Chalet was a top five Sunday Times bestseller and spent three weeks in the Kindle top 100. The Cruise is her third novel. Follow @catherinecooper on Twitter

About the book

A glamorous ship. A mysterious cast of passengers. And a New Year’s Eve party that goes horribly wrong…

During a New Year’s Eve party on a large cruise ship in the Caribbean, the ship’s dancer, Lola, disappears. The ship is searched, and the coastguard is called, but there is no sign of her, either dead or alive.

Lola was popular on the ship but secretive about her background, and as the mystery around her deepens, everyone on board becomes a suspect. Who was she arguing with the night she vanished? 

Why did she come aboard the cruise in the first place? What was she running from?

Review

A floating city of pleasure and luxury becomes the scene of a tragic accident or was it intentional, either way someone is missing. The aftermath reveals secrets, people hiding secrets, people using secrets to threaten others – overall it seems as if the disappearance of one person starts of a type of unravelling in other people. Is it guilt? A killer, a blackmailer or is there a bigger picture?

It’s a psychological thriller, a mystery with a sort of dual storyline, and the way they seem unconnected. The cruise ship, which in itself is an extravaganza of expensive living, and yet it is also becoming the scene of too many accidents and crimes. Simultaneously the story of a missing child, who reappears under traumatic circumstances with no memory of her life before she was taken.

The author does an excellent job of keeping the two stories completely separate for the majority of the book, so much so that the reader forgets one when they delve into the other, and vice-versa. Both so engrossing that there is no thought of why, or if they could be linked.

It’s an engrossing read, and certainly one that makes me want to read more.

Buy The Cruise at Amazon Uk or got to Goodreads for any other retailer. Publisher: HarperCollins | pub date 10th November 2022 | PBO EB AUDIO. Buy at Amazon com.

#BlogBlitz For Richer, For Deader by Helen Golden

 Today it’s a pleasure to take part in the Blog Blitz For Richer, For Deader by Helen Golden.

About the Author

Hello. I’m Helen Golden. I write British contemporary cozy whodunnits with a hint of humour. I live in small village in Lincolnshire in the UK with my husband, my step-daughter, her two cats, our two dogs, sometimes my step-son, and our tortoise.

I used to work in senior management, but after my recent job came to a natural end I had the opportunity to follow my dreams and start writing. It’s very early in my life as an author, but so far I’m loving it.

It’s crazy busy at our house, so when I’m writing I retreat to our caravan (an impulsive lockdown purchase) which is mostly parked on our drive. When I really need total peace and quiet, I take it to a lovely site about 15 minutes away and hide there until my family runs out of food or clean clothes. 

Follow Helen on Insta: @helengolden_author Facebook: helengoldenauthor and TikTok: @helengoldenauthor 

About the book

Is the Wedding Between Sir Hewitt Willoughby-Franklin’s Step-daughter and Billionaire’s Son Off?

Rumours are that the recent death of Kelley Lindsell (29), the personal chef of tycoon Rudy (68) and Sheri Trotman (65) at Sir Hewitt’s Fawstead Manor country estate in Fenshire, has spooked Sybil Bransgrove (36) so badly she’s considering cancelling her nuptials. 

Meanwhile the bride and her mother, Lady Grace (61), are being supported by family friend Lady Beatrice (36), the Countess of Rossex, who, alongside her business partner Perry Juke, is currently managing the project to refurbish the Manor House and Lodge on the estate. 

Not again! Now that Lady Grace has asked Lady Beatrice to liaise with the police during the investigation into Kelley’s death, she’ll have to cooperate with boorish Detective Chief Inspector Richard Fitzwilliam whether she likes it or not. Her only relief will be solving the murder with the help of her friends Perry and Simon and her dog Daisy to get rid of him faster.  But with so many wedding party guests staying on-site, any one of them could be the killer. Can they find out who it is before Sybil calls off the wedding…

Review

This is the second book in the Right Royal Investigation series – a cosy mystery. If you like your mysteries and crime with a bit of humour, a bit of a love-hate possible romance, and strong memorable characters, then this will be right up your alley.

Lady Beatrice and Richard Fitzwilliam have crossed paths before – in fact Fitzwilliam is starting to worry that Beatrice is a magnet for trouble and dead bodies. No matter where she goes mystery and mayhem ensues. The two of them have a relationship based on a flicker of attraction and a mutual desire to find the culprit, although one could argue that Fitzwilliam doesn’t really have a choice in the matter.

What begins as subtle, and yet violent threats, finally escalates into something much more dangerous. The threats that are dismissed as a mere distraction to the upcoming events become a lethal reality.

Comfortable reads don’t really get the attention they deserve, regardless of the genre. Enjoying a trail of clues and a bevy of quirky characters is a great way to spend the time. Imagine Midsomer meets Lynley and add a flair of Tommy and Tuppence on top of that. Wonder what they will get up to next and whether Beatrice will once again stumble upon another mystery or worse.

Buy For Richer, For Deader: A Right Royal Cozy Investigation at Amazon Uk or go to Goodreads for any other retailer. Publisher: ‎Drew Bradley Press, pub date November 16, 2022. Buy at Amazon com.

#BlogTour The Coming Darkness by Greg Mosse

 It’s a pleasure to take part in the Blogtour The Coming Darkness by Greg Mosse. 

About the Author

A theatre director, playwright and actor Greg Mosse is the founder and director of the Criterion New Writing programme at the Criterion Theatre in London, running workshops in script development to a diverse community of writers, actors and directors. In addition, since 2015, Greg has written, produced and stage 25 plays and musicals.

Greg set up both the Southbank Centre Creative Writing School – an open access program of evening classes delivering MA level workshops – and the University of Sussex MA in Creative Writing at West Dean College which he taught for 4 years. 

The husband of the bestselling novelist Kate Mosse, Kate’s hit novel Labyrinth was inspired by a house that Greg and his mother bought together in the French medieval city of Carcassonne, where the couple and their children spent many happy summers. Following the success of Labyrinth, Greg created the innovative readers-and-writers website mosselabyrinth.co.uk MosseLabyrinth. The first of its kind MosseLabrynth was the world’s first online accessible 3D world, and the inspiration for Pottermore – the popular Harry Potter website. 

A multilinguist, Greg has lived and worked in Paris, New York, Los Angeles and Madrid and has worked as both an interpreter at a variety of international institutions and a teacher in the UK.

Greg and Kate live in Chichester, where Kate’s parents founded the Chichester Festival Theatre, they have two grown up children. The Coming Darkness was written during lockdown and is Greg’s debut novel.  Follow @GregMosse on Twitter

About the book

A massive new talent in British fiction, Greg Mosse’s storytelling is complex and finely crafted, combining twisting plotlines, intelligent dialogue and ambiguous characters, all skilfully brought together in an epic climax. Never before has dystopian fiction been so chillingly real.

Set in an alternate near future in which global warming and pathogenic viruses have torn through the fabric of society, The Coming Darkness follows French secret operative Alexandre Lamarque on the trail of global eco-terrorists. Lamarque’s target is set on destabilising the controls placed on global governments that protect human life from climate change. One wrong move and the world could be plunged into darkness.

From Paris to North Africa, Lamarque is drawn into an ominous sequence of events: a theft from a Norwegian genetics lab; a string of violent child murders; his mother’s desperate illness; a chaotic coup in North Africa, and the extraction under fire of its charismatic leader.

Experience has taught Alex there is no one he can trust – not his secretive lover Mariam, not even his mentor, Professor Fayard – the man at the centre of a deadly web of government control. Lamarque rapidly finds himself in a heart-thumping race against time, the one man with the ability to prevent chaos and destruction taking over.

Perhaps the world’s only hope of preventing The Coming Darkness… 

Review

When you wade through the vast amount of information, characters, scenes, era and abilities – it would be easy to miss what I believe to be the core of the book. Ironically, despite the story taking place in 2037, that core isn’t really much different from a possible current scenario. Good vs evil, advancement vs the comfortable status quo.

Who is right? The people wanting to use technology allegedly for the good of mankind and advancement or the group intent on creating a carte blanche. Strange conundrum – when is an eco-activist a terrorist and when are they just rebels with a cause? Depends on your perspective and perhaps more importantly; what is the end goal and how many victims will your crusade or agenda cost the movement and the world. In this case the group is an invisible entity willing to die for their cause.

The use of misinformation to connect a legion of believers, those who find patterns where others don’t – conspiracy theory vs fact. Uncomfortably close to the truth, and in this case how it can fuel a lethal narrative.

Just a side note – I read this with the image of 2037 being the future, like really far into the future, and then it dawned on me afterwards that it’s actually only fifteen years. That was a bit mindboggling, then again, A Space Odyssey 2000 and the 21st century once seemed yonks away too. I wonder if that was the intention to create a scenario that appears unfathomable, but it’s probably closer to reality than we realise.

I enjoyed the speculative nature of story. It combines current with futuristic, facts with intuition and perception. In the midst there is the moral dilemma of how we know who is on the right side of morality or is it a case of you only get to judge the situation when it has become a reality. Looking forward to what this author brings to the table next.

Buy The Coming Darkness at Amazon Uk or go to Goodreads for any other retailer. Publisher: Moonflower Books, pub date 10th November 2022 – Hardback £18.99. Buy at Amazon com.

#Blogtour Dawnlands by Philippa Gregory

It’s a pleasure to take part in the Blogtour Dawnlands by Philippa Gregory. ‘Political intrigue, rebellion, and scandal in the royal court of the Stuarts, brought to life by one of the nation’s foremost historical novelists’

About the Author

Philippa Gregory is the author of many bestselling novels, including The Other Boleyn Girl, and is a recognised authority on women’s history. Her Cousins’ War novels, reaching their dramatic conclusion with The King’s Curse, were the basis for the highly successful BBC series, The White Queen. 

Philippa’s other great interest is the charity that she founded over twenty years ago: Gardens for the Gambia. She has raised funds and paid for over 200 wells in the primary schools of this poor African country. Philippa graduated from the University of Sussex and holds a PhD and Alumna of the Year 2009 at Edinburgh University. In 2016, she received the Harrogate Festival Award for Outstanding Contribution to Historical Fiction. Philippa lives with her family on a small farm in Yorkshire. Follow @PhilippaGBooks on Twitter

About the book

In a divided country, power and loyalty conquer all… It is 1685 and England is on the brink of a renewed civil war against the Stuart kings with many families bitterly divided. Alinor, now a successful businesswoman, has been coaxed by the manipulative Livia to save Queen Mary from the coming siege. The rewards are life-changing: the family could return to their beloved Tidelands, and Alinor could rule where she was once lower than a servant.

Inspired by news of a rebellion against the Stuart kings, Ned Ferryman returns from America with his Pokanoket servant to join the uprising against roman catholic King James. As Ned swears loyalty to the charismatic Duke of Monmouth, he discovers a new and unexpected love.

Meanwhile, Queen Mary summons her friend Livia to a terrified court. Her survival, and that of the Stuart kings, is in the balance, and only a clever and dangerous gamble can save them… 

A compelling and powerful story of political intrigue and personal ambition, from one end of the empire to another, set between the palaces of London, the tidelands of Fowlmire and the shores of Barbados. 

Review

This is the third book in the Fairmile series, all of them can be read as standalone, but I would recommend reading Tidelands and Dark Tides just because they are great reads. They are also for the majority based on a set of fictional characters entwined with certain historical facts – a tad different from previous series.

What remains the same is the way this author in particular puts historical women at the forefront of her stories. The women who tend to be written out of history, forgotten and are often falsely portrayed. Their subtle manipulations from the side-lines, their importance as political tools, and perhaps most underestimated their power to drive the agenda as mothers, daughters and wives.

Moving slightly away from the usual political intrigue and power plays at court, although the court of the Stuarts gives plenty of fodder for those who seek it. The story also moves into other areas that carry the stamp of colonial oppression – the slave trade and the sugar industry for instance. 

I’m not going to go through all the characters we know and love (or dislike) from the previous books – needless to say Livia is doing what Livia does best, Ned follows his heart and a keen sense of justice or rebellion, depending on where you stand. At the core of this is a family, how they are tied to each, their experiences and home.

The author always delivers a riveting historical read – story and reader come before all else.

Buy Dawnlands at Amazon Uk or go to Goodreads for any other retailer. Publisher: Simon & Schuster, pub date 8th November | Hardback – £20.00. Buy at Amazon comBuy via Simon and Schuster.

#Blogtour The People Before by Charlotte Northedge

 It’s a pleasure to take part in the Blogtour The People Before by Charlotte Northedge.

About the Author

Charlotte Northedge is the joint Head of Books for the Guardian. Charlotte has previously written for a range of newspapers and magazines, including the Guardian, Psychologies and Cosmopolitan. A journalist, she has an MA in Modern and Contemporary Literature from Birkbeck and is an alumni of the Curtis Brown Creative writing course. The House Guest was Charlotte’s greatly acclaimed debut novel, published in 2021 by Harper Collins. Follow @charnorth on Twitter

About the book

What if your dream house became your worst nightmare? Jess and her husband need a new start. So when the chance to buy a rambling old house in the Suffolk countryside comes up, they leap at it.

But not everyone in Suffolk is welcoming. The locals know a secret about the Maple House, and soon, Jess realises they’ve made a huge mistake. Something bad happened in that house. Something nobody wants to talk about. Something to do with the people before…

Review

When paranoia is deep in your bones and fear is a constant companion, then I wonder if the advantages of moving into an isolated house with little or no ability to get help when you need it, are really worth all the added anxiety?

I think Jess knows that subconsciously, although she does a great job of trying to convince herself and her family of the positive side of a new start in life. A start that is a little bumpy and uncomfortable at times as she gets to know the locals, and her children attempt to fit in too. Her husband isn’t much help – spending more hours than usual at work, which means Jess and her young children are alone a lot.

That probably makes the odd atmosphere, the mysterious feeling that there is someone watching her, trying to scare her family, all the more intense and frightening.

It’s a psychological domestic thriller that starts with an ominous feeling and ends with quite a few surprises. Even in the first few chapters I found myself telling Jess not to leave her daughter in a room that scared her – to listen more closely to her fears.

It’s a story that is a lot like a knitted blanket someone is slowly unstitching before our eyes, as this psychological mystery and dark domestic thriller takes the reader down rabbit holes they might not have expected in this smooth image of a perfect family.

Buy The People Before at Amazon Uk or go to Goodreads for any other retailer. Publisher: Harper Collins; pub date 10th November 2022 Hardback | Ebook | Audio | £14.99. Buy at Amazon comBuy via Harper Collins.

#Blogtour The Girl with the Emerald Flag by Kathleen McGurl

 It’s a pleasure to take part in the BlogTour The Girl with the Emerald Flag by Kathleen McGurl.

About the Author

Kathleen McGurl lives near the coast in Christchurch, England. She writes dual timeline novels in which a historical mystery is uncovered and resolved in the present day. She is married to an Irishman and has two adult sons. She enjoys travelling, especially in her motorhome around Europe and has of course visited Ireland many times. Follow @KathMcGurl on Twitter, Visit kathleenmcgurl.com

About the book

A country rebelling – It’s 1916 and, as war rages in Europe, Gráinne leaves her job in a department store to join Countess Markiewicz’s revolutionary efforts. It is a decision which will change her life forever. A rebellion is brewing, and as Dublin’s streets become a battleground, Gráinne soon discovers the personal cost of fighting for what you believe in…

A forgotten sacrifice – Decades on, student Nicky is recovering from a break-up when a research project leads her to her great-grandmother’s experiences in revolutionary Ireland. When Nicky finds a long-forgotten handkerchief amongst her great-grandmother’s things, it leads to the revelation of a heartbreaking story of tragedy and courage, and those who sacrificed everything for their country.

Inspired by a heartbreaking true story, this emotional historical novel will sweep you away to the Emerald Isle. Perfect for fans of Jean Grainger, Sandy Taylor and Fiona Valpy.

Review

Nicky is searching for her identity and is very much in the process of discovering herself. It’s probably a little bit of a standard rebellion the way she talks about and feels about her mother. She feels judged, and under constant supervision and criticism. The two of them clash a lot. In the midst of this coming-of-age and acknowledgement of self, Nicky goes on a journey.

The kind of journey that changes your views of the world, the past and even your own loved ones. Nicky uses her grandmother as a font of knowledge to research a rebellion that unbeknownst to her has impacted the life of her grandmother, and also the history of her family.

Gráinne, a young woman also on the cusp of discovering what she wants in life and who she is, is living in the midst of World War I, and is also heavily involved in the plans to change the political status quo in Ireland. A part of the historical path that to this day still shapes the fragility of a relationship built on a history of death and oppression.

I really enjoy watching an author grow, both in skills and in exploration of genre. Although this is still trademark past and present connects, this story shows the growth as it tackles an enormous historical event in Irish history. It was told without the shadow of the usual political perspective or the fury on both sides, instead the author takes it down to the level of people and their personal experience and perspective.

I think, if this is any indication, that the author will take it up a notch, and I am looking forward to it.

Buy The Girl with the Emerald Flag at Amazon Uk or go to Goodreads for any other retailer. Buy at Amazon com.