Monday, 23 June 2014

Amazing what you find on google

I don't at all remember seeing this review last Christmas, when it actually came out, but reading it certainly felt like opening a Christmas gift.  I was very happy to read how much MJ enjoyed (and recommended) 'The Santa Next Door', and I loved the cute picture which accompanied the review too.  Thanks, MJ, for making me smile, and sorry it's taken me so long to make this discovery!

Tuesday, 17 June 2014

Busy not writing

Well, it's been a busy month!  I had a fantastic time taking part in the Doncaster Literature Festival, both as a guest and a speaker.  I heard Matt Haig, Stephen Booth and Milly Johnson speak, as well as giving my own talk alongside Kate Walker.  As a result of the festival, I was contacted by Radio Sheffield to talk (with fellow romantic novelist Victoria Howard) about romance, and Doncaster's second year running as Amazon's romance reading capital of the UK.  So, basically, I spent most of the month being busy not writing... but I did manage to redress the balance a little, courtesy of Sheffield Writer's retreat in Crookes, where I got going again on the long-awaited sequel to Perfect Partners... I hope to be able to share some snippets with you soon.

Sunday, 27 April 2014

Forthcoming Events: Doncaster Literary Festival

I'm excited to be part of the Literary Festival organised by Doncaster Libraries.  I'll be speaking alongside prolific Mills & Boon author Kate Walker, whose '12-point guide to writing romance' has long been one of my go-to reference books.  Details of the event are below, followed by a link to the rest of the festival programme - if you're in or near Doncaster in June, don't miss it!  

Wednesday 4 June, 3p.m. - 4.30p.m.
Authors Kate Walker and Stephanie Cage – Central Lending Library, Waterdale

Behind the Hearts and Flowers. Popular Mills & Boon author Kate Walker will be talking about being a romantic novelist and her latest book, which is released on the 30th anniversary of the publication of her very first book! Joining her will be new author Stephanie Cage who is a Doncaster-based romance writer and author of Perfect Partners (Crimson Romance).
Ticket Price £3

Book Review: Recipe for Love

Recipe for LoveRecipe for Love by Katie Fforde
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

This may possibly be my favourite Katie Fforde book to date. I loved the down-to-earth heroine, Zoe, and the humour that comes from the way her ordinary outlook clashes with the media frenzy surrounding the TV cooking competition she enters. With celebrities a-plenty (including the delicious hero, food writer Gideon Irving, who as judge on the show, should be thoroughly out of bounds, providing some vastly entertaining bedroom farce moments) and Zoe's love-to-hate roommate Cher, many aspects of the book are larger than life, but Katie Fforde's careful research ensures the story never strays too far from the bounds of believability.

If anyone ever invents a 'best supporting character' Oscar for romance novels, I'll be nominating the very charming, very pregnant, Fen, whose relationship with her husband Rupert and their terrible in-laws, as well as her developing friendship with Zoe, round out the story beautifully.

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Sunday, 6 April 2014

Book Review: A Man Like Him

A Man Like HimA Man Like Him by Rachel Brimble
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

'A Man Like Him' is an exciting read, balancing plenty of drama with a truly lovely romance storyline. I fell in love with Templeton Cove in 'Finding Justice' and in 'A Man Like Him' we get to learn more about the people in this charming seaside village, and to see what happens to Cat and Jay after the end of their story.

Chris, Cat's brother, is a perfectly believable character and a perfect hero: strong and powerful yet damaged by his broken relationship, and not yet living up to his full potential. Angela, the manager of Templeton Cove's holiday park, is so clearly the person who brings out the best in him, but their relationship is convincingly threatened by her stalker ex-husband. Everything about this story was believable and exciting (with the possible exception of how easy it was for Angela to keep a gun, and how unfussed the police seemed to be by the fact that she was prepared to defend herself with it... come on guys, this is Britain!). Anyway, that tiny detail aside, I loved everything about 'A Man Like Him': the seaside setting, the small-town people and the larger than life drama.

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