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 !!!!!!!!!!!!



An eBook Rant!

Tom                                            Ducks! Romantic Short Stories for Animal Lovers

Pictures of my books for a change!!!!!!!!

As my blog says, most of me books are picked up off the free book list on Amazon, mostly the German one.  Most are well presented  but some send me to despair as it’s obviuos the author really has no idea how the book presents on a KIndle, and recently I’ve picked up some which seem to be photocopied sheets, which you can’t enlarge and so are unreadable – although I do only have a basic KIndle. Ok, so they are a bit better on the PC Kindle, but they’re still difficult to read.  The most recent being Christian Meditations by Tyng, Self Training in Christian Meditation by Rushton Burr  and the Duden Schulgrammatik Englisch.

The event of the 50 Shades of grey spawned a huge rise in the porn, and rip offs, the best was 50 Shades of Wey, which was about beer, thankfully these are dying down. It’s amazing how the classics are always there, such a Jane Eyre, David Copperfield, Robinson Crusoe, I bet someone is wishing they had bought the publishing rights.  Some people seem to have left their book permanently on the free lists.  There’s also a rise of collections of several books, and these can be infuriating as when you read the book details, all there is are more ads for more books!

This also led in a rise of book covers with models posing a scene from the book, some a bit near the knuckle for my own taste, but I always associate these pictures with being a tacky MIlls and Boon type book, so I rarely look beyond the cover. The Chick lits still seems to have drawn/painted covers, but they seem to be coming less and less on the lists.

There are now specific eBook publishers, and for these I hold my main rant. So often you think you are picking up a novel (and It doesn’t say not so on the cover or details, just on the contents list and who looks at these – obviuosly not me), only to find a novella which then has a third of another book as a taster. There is one English firm who is a culprit on this -should I name names? It’s great in some ways, at least it helps with the marketing but………. I find it infuriating, and when I looked at the website, I see they ask specifically for novellas (money making) but also have slave labour interns, which explains some of the unprofessional proofing that is in some, e,g Wendy Lewis’s Town and Country.

The main difference, is the rise of the Novella, no bad thing, but please cough up on the page that its so!

It’s all a grwoing market, and obviuosly, I’m looking at the amatuer end, there are some gems, and I’ll keep on being a skinflint!

Absence of Grace by Ann Warner

Absence of Grace

Having enjoyed Counterpointe so much, and desperate for something good to read, I picked this up  and was so pleased I did!  This is a lovely, gentle story, but I’m afraid that I sussed the dark secret in Clen’s life quite quickly! This is maybe due of my pet book, Song of Songs by Beverley Hughesdon.

However, this so well written with the pace and characterisations keeping me going. They were enhanced by the descriptions of Alaska – in fact being a snow junkie, I would rather have liked some snowy scenes. Usually when there is a dark secret I get irritated at waiting for this to be found out, but maybe because I sussed it (but I could have been wrong!), I enjoyed the very real journey of Clem to self  awareness and healing. It was a ‘guzzle’ book in that I couldn’t put it down!!!!!!!!!

However,   the one thing is, is that the title is a complete misnomer, it’s entirely about Grace………

The Cornish Affair by Laura Lockington

The Cornish Affair

I don’t usually go for foody books, so I must admit I skipped a little on the bits when Fin goes into her thoughts on cooking, but this book was a bit different anyway.  The plot device of the storm coming in and wrecking things, could not be predicted and was a great jolt.  The closeness of the Cornish community came over so well, I guess she lives in such a community as this part of her writing shines out, it almost takes over from the main narrative. Oliver is a little one dimensional for me, but the great gang of eccentrics compensate for this. The ending felt a little hurried for me, but I really enjoyed this, it got to the I don’t want to put it down category. I’ll be reading more of her books.

But what I DO hate, even though it was paged up on the contents (does anyone read  a contents page any more?) is thinking I still have 10% left only to find it’s taken up with a sample from someone else’s book,  arrrrrrrghhhhhhhh!

Swan by Katherine Hole


For just a pure bit of escapism and fantasy, this book it great!  I wallowed in every bit of this, yes, of course, you know how it will end and you’re just waiting for her to twig the identity of her neighbour, but it’s written in such a great way that you’re sucked in.  The contrast between Maddy’s fantasy world and her really dull, depressing job creates a great tension.  I also loved that when Chet reveals himself, he doesn’t come over as the perfect Prince, he still has the petulance and selfishness of the screen star, and it’s crafted well enough to wonder if they are really made for each other.

Cup of coffee and enjoy!

Charlotte, Pride and Prejudice continues by Karen Aminadra

Charlotte ~ Pride and Prejudice Continues (The Pride & Prejudice Continues Series)

There was a huge glut of Pride &Prejudice spinoffs last year and I picked up a load of them, only to get reading now.  I did always feel sorry for Charlotte stuck with that dreadful cleric, but here, everything turns to a happy ending.  He was always a bit OTT, but as in any fiction, he comes good. The book echoes Austin’s style but is firmly written in this century, I’m sure that Jane never giggled so much in her time, but it works.  I’m now off to look for other spin offs, are there any characters you wondered what had happened to them??????

Counterpointe by Ann Warner


I didn’t like ballet books as a kid, it was one of those things that was an enemy of horse riders, you can’t train to dance and ride.  So I felt a bit rebellious reading this, even at my age!

I enjoyed this love story, although the end was long suspected.  I felt that Clare dealt with her problems with almost the same ruthlessness that she used in beating people in conversations, but that maybe her transition back to ballet was a bit too easy.

It makes such a change to have the bloke as just a nice bloke, none of the fit bodied horny heroes of a lot of books and so Rob read far more real than many.

A pleasant read, great for a holiday wallow or a rainy afternoon.

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