At last!!!!!! Song of Songs by Beverley Hughesdon

 

GREAT NEWS!!!!  Newly released as a Kindle read by Canelo books,  AND at last Eve will be published, too, can’t wait!

Song of Songs  is my most favorite book of all time and I read it every now  and then.  I was given it in a proof edition with a bland cover, the one here I think spoils it. The story is far more noble than this trashy piccie!

Born into rich Edwardian family,  Helena is always the ungainly, awkward one, who loves her twin brothers, Robbie and Eddie.  In several traumas, she is recued by the footman Jem, which explains a lot of her later actions, although the text doesn’t make any hooks into it, so maybe its my interpretation.  Oh, how I wish I was born then, with no housework, allowed to sit about and read and write, waited on hand and foot, but most of all, horses to ride, at will, for pleasure,and no mucking out! The life in a way prefaces that of Downton Abbey. I’m telling a lot of the plot here,  but only because I need to explain how it relates to my enjoyment!

Helena grows to a teenager and after a misalliance with her cousin gets shifted off to Germany to learn music, as a punishment, which turns out into a blessing as she has a real ability to sing.  First world war arrives, and Helena trains as a Nurse – and the descriptions of this culture shock are wonderful, as are the accounts of her duty in the Hospitals on the warfields in France.  One twin dies, another survives but is damaged in his lungs.

Helena has this romantic fantasy about Gerald, her Officer love, who she does eventually get engaged to, but he is killed.  During the war, Helena meets  Ben, who is working class engine driver in peace time.  They meet after the war, and it is to him Helena flees when she helps in he suicide of her dying brother.  Ben takes advantage of Helena, coercing her into marrying him.  They begin life in his home town, another culture shock for Helena, but it is only when Helena finds out her Gerald was gay, she has a nervous breakdown, also born of her war work.  Recovering, she returns home, and through her healing, finally realises that she loves Ben and the book ends with the birth of  their son

This is a real beauty and beast tale, something which is in Beverley’s other books.   Helena is so human, but courageous.  Her breakdown is a way to healing.  Maybe I like this because I identify with her, in having earlier in life stupid love affairs, and then finding my own beast !!!!!!!!!!!!

 

Studs and Stilettos by Bev Pettersen

I seem to be finding firm favourites on my Kindle trips and Bev is one of them. I just love the mix of horses, romance and a good mystery. Emily was such a nice bimbo at the start and Dan just a bit dumb but they both muscled up through the course of the book, through the course of misunderstandings and a sneaky little sub plot that eventually took over.  This was a guzzle book that I haven’t had for a long time. Bravo!

I didn’t realise it was a follow up to Thoroughbreds and Trailer Trash, wish I’d read that first, never mind!

The Convict, the Rookie and the redemption of Gertie Thump by Becky Lyn Rickman

I picked this up as the title was a bit unusual and found myself a real treat. This lady knows people, our hypocracies, our bad and good sides. At first I thought it was going to be a homely, Christian book, but I’m not sure now on which side it falls.  The larger than life Gertie is such a nightmare, but in fact, by the end of the book, she appears one of the more honest characters. Its such an enjoyable slice of town life, and  I think she may be an distant relative of Agatha Raisin who has this same, blunt, hard yet funny look on life. A lot of the book is in dialogue, which is not easy to write or read so much. Brilliant. More please!

Cupboard Love by Laura Lockington

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Another autobiography, unusual for me, but this I loved. A girl of my era, I just so enjoyed the short anecdotes and tales from Laura’s childhood. Of the same era, I identified with her, and her pain – I took my rebellion in a slightly different way though(!) She is my favourite author at the moment and this  makes her books so much more enjoyable and as a writer/analyst, I see how she informs her work – often unconsciously. Her books have such charm and originality.

Therefore its such a shame that at present I’m struggling through Before and After. Totally original, great plot, but I just can’t get on with Flora, I reckon the problem is that she just doesn’t have the Lockington charm – see how I feel when I finish!!!

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My Animals and Other family by Clare Balding

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I just loved this book, Clare doesn’t need this book review, so I am writing of the effect this book had on me! Clare had my dream childhood in SOOO many ways, loads of horses to ride, dogs , an countryside home, a brother who was a mate and one parent who was ok!  All those stables and horses, my dream.  She had problems like me, such as getting clothes so she could fit in at school and even fitting in at school and making innocent blunders that were seen as terrible by the parents.

What struck me was her bitterness towards her father which is quite understandable. It was made clear to her from the start that as a female she didn’t rate and her father consistently didn’t remember any of her achievements. But she recounts most of her escapades with humour and clear sight, it so explains her personality. I didn’t have a father, which is maybe easier than having such a prat of a one but maybe he was of his time and generation. Maybe mine would have been the same, but I could compose him exactly as I wanted him and he was ‘One of the Few.

What I got the most from this was inspiration that it is possible to write about events with humour, passion and objectivity. I’ve been thinking of writing about my own childhood for a while, but had felt its negative aspects would make it difficult to write, but not with Clare’s model.  Thank you, and do so I envy you all those horses!!!!!!

Arapaho by Larry Jeram-Croft

Arapaho (Jon Hunt 04)

This is the fourth book in the Jon Hunt book and I was a bit worried that Larry was getting stale. Wrong!  He’s pulled a real ripper here and in the unusual setting of Beirut.  A high point is the chat between Karim and Helen, where ideologies and cultures collide. I don’t want to spoil it too much but the gripping climax is one of the best yet, with a Larry twist at the end, not to mention some happiness for one character!   Now will we have a new daring duo putting the world to rights…….

Anna’s eBook Review AWARDS 2013

Stargazy Pie

There has been a change in the free lists this year, and it’s not all good. Since the occurrence of Sheds of Gray, there has been steadily more and more porn, making me switch from Amazon.de to .com!  There are more mystery murders,’Krimis‘ in German which I feel says it all. Romance is about the same. But the main trend is for samplers from well known authors and multi book editions. One good thing is that more information is being put in the title, you can see straight way when you’re going to hit another novella series. There are now specific eBook publishers, but sometimes the quality from the private writer seems higher!  Enough.  Not such an outstanding year this year, but here goes! When you read the reviews you will see the grounds for my awards!

Best Christian Book: Altar Ego by Craig Groeschel. https://booksandanna.wordpress.com/2013/03/25/altar-ego-by-craig-groeschel/

Sexiest Hero: Alex in Stargazy Pie, https://booksandanna.wordpress.com/2013/08/05/stargazy-pie-b…ura-lockington/

Best Heroine,  Erin in the Santa Society,  https://booksandanna.wordpress.com/2013/12/29/the-santa-soci…ristine-mccord/

Best New Writer;  Amanda Petyt for  Bosomed Deep in Vines,  https://booksandanna.wordpress.com/2013/12/09/bosomed-deep-i…y-amanda-petyt/ ‎

Science Fiction is a tie!  For the deepest, most literary (!)  A chair between the Rails by G.T Anders,  https://booksandanna.wordpress.com/2013/11/01/a-chair-betwee…-by-g-t-anders

For the most amusing, thought provoking, Siren by Larry Jeram Croft  https://booksandanna.wordpress.com/2013/07/16/siren-by-larry-jeram-croft/

The Best Country book, Town and Country  by Wendy Lewis, https://booksandanna.wordpress.com/2013/08/12/town-and-count…by-wendy-lewis/

The Laddiest book, The Diaries of an Expectant and Hapless Father by Pete Sortwell, https://booksandanna.wordpress.com/2013/10/28/the-diaries-of…-pete-sortwell/

Best Horsey books , Bev Petersen, https://booksandanna.wordpress.com/2013/06/01/horses-and-her…y-bev-peterson/

Best Spin off, Charlotte, Pride and Prejudice continues by Karen Aminadra, https://booksandanna.wordpress.com/2013/06/21//

Funniest Book; The Seven Steps to Closure by Donna Joy Usher, https://booksandanna.wordpress.com/2013/08/19/the-seven-step…onna-joy-usher/

Book of the Year: Stargazy Pie by Laura Lockington,  https://booksandanna.wordpress.com/2013/08/05/stargazy-pie-b…ura-lockington/

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