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The Chiswell Street Chronicles

Come with me on a walk through Moorfields

The year is 1775. London is bursting at the seams. It has breached the confines of its ancient Roman blueprint to become the largest city in Europe. Though most Londoners live within walking distance of open countryside, Moorfields is one of the last remaining plots of open land in the city. It straddles the wall,…
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A woman of five and twenty

The Bookseller's Wife, eBook release date 13 March 2024

Based on a true story, The Bookseller’s Wife tells the story of Dorcas Turton, the great grand-daughter of the Honourable Sir John Turton, Baron of the Exchequer and Justice of the King’s Bench. Dorcas’s mother was so proud of her lineage that she kept her maiden name in the only way a woman in the…
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A Fitting Education for an 18th Century Daughter

“Oh dread the skill of writing well, For fear you should the men excel."

When her family circumstances are dramatically reduced, Dorcas Turton (the main character in The Bookseller’s Wife) finds herself completely unprepared. In the opening chapters she reflects: ‘In all the years she spent absorbing the principles of good housewifery, as every genteel daughter must, never once did she envisage putting those lessons to practical use. And…
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Virtual Book Club: Clare Flynn introduces The Colour of Glass

A captivating novel of love and art before WW1

Today I’m delighted to welcome award-winning author Clare Flynn to Virtual Book Club, my author interview series in which authors have the opportunity to pitch their book to your book club. Clare Flynn is the author of fifteen historical novels and a collection of short stories. Her website promises historical fiction with modern themes and,…
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Virtual Book Club: Christine Webber introduces Watching from the Wings

Today I’m delighted to welcome Christine Webber back to Virtual Book Club, my author interview series in which authors have the opportunity to pitch their book to your book club. Christine was a guest on my blog in July 2021, when she was talking about her novel, So Many Ways of Loving, which was subsequently…
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The Selfies Shortlist: Spotlight on The Ring Breaker by Jean Gill

An epic medieval saga of the last Vikings

Shortlisted for the Selfies Book Awards 2023 and the 2022 Chaucer Award. In the twilight of the old gods, when the last Vikings rule the seas, two cursed orphans meet on an Orkney beach… As thrilled as I am to be shortlisted for a third time for The Selfies Book Awards, I am all too…
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Virtual Book Club: GD Harper introduces The Maids of Biddenden

The Maids of Biddenden is shortlisted for The Selfies Book Awards 2023

Today I’m delighted to welcome GD Harper to Virtual Book Club, my author interview series in which authors have the opportunity to pitch their book to your book club. GD Harper became a full-time author in 2016. His three previous novels are Love’s Long Road, A Friend in Deed and Silent Money. He was a…
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A post for International Women’s Day

Today is International Women’s Day. In between paragraphs, I’ve added quotes from inspirational women, both past and present, but let’s start with this one. “Extremists have shown what frightens them most. A girl with a book.” Malala Yousafzai Last week, wearing my professional hat, I attended an event about the representation of women in the…
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Celebrating Ten Years as an Indie Author

Adventures in Self-publishing

Christmas Day 2022 will be a special anniversary for me, marking ten years since I took back control of my writing career and became an indie author. Why did it take me so long? Good question. But bear with me. My first novel was published in 2009 when self-publishing was still in its infancy. Correction…
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Why Mountains Play a Role in Small Eden

The Wild Woman of Carshalton

It may be Robert Cooke’s story I tell in Small Eden, but his mother Hettie undergoes a transformation of her own. Hettie’s parents were mountaineers, who named her after the ridge route in the Scottish highlands where they first met. After her father meets his end traversing that very same route, this proves too much…
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