I’m thrilled to be releasing The Heart of the Garden today. It’s the third and final book in my Country House and Garden series, following on from The Rose Girls and Love in an English Garden, exploring how gardens can help to heal and how important they are in bringing people together.
I truly loved writing these three novels, and I had a lot of fun researching them too from planting my own rose garden to getting lost in mazes and visiting stately homes like Bateman’s in the glorious Sussex Weald and Wightwick Manor with its wonderful Arts and Crafts interiors.
I feel very lucky to be a writer!
If you’d like to read my earlier blog post about researching The Heart of the Garden at beautiful Wightwick Manor, click here.
I wanted to share this very special offer with you. This week, UK readers can get three of my books for just 99p each over on Amazon!
There’s the first in my new Book Lovers series…
And the first in my bestselling Austen Addicts series…
Finally, one of my old favourites, Three Graces.
Prices correct at time of publication (28 January 2018)
Rosalind came to us with her three ex-bat sisters in the summer of 2016. Named after Shakespeare’s heroine from As You Like It, she soon proved to be an intrepid girl and was the first in her flock to venture across the lawn to the rose border.
Essentially shy, she was nevertheless easy to handle and was very docile during all her trips to the vets where she became a much-loved and cared for patient.
After being successfully fitted with an implant to reverse the effects of egg yolk peritonitis, she enjoyed a wonderful summer, free-ranging and sunbathing with Evie and Viola.
A second implant was fitted just before Christmas and, although successful again, we could see that she was slowing down. She spent more time indoors where we could keep an eye on her and make sure she was eating because she was losing weight, and we were heartbroken when we finally lost her. Of all our hens, she spent the most hours at the vets and was such a brave girl.
Goodbye, darling Rosalind. We will miss you.
I’m so excited to leap into 2018 – I’m hoping to publish three new books this year: The Heart of the Garden is coming in February and is the third in my Country House and Garden series. I can’t wait for you all to read that! It’s a big romantic story with a touch of Gothic! Then, in the autumn, the third in my Book Lovers series – One More Page Before I Kiss You – will be published. This will be Josh Nightingale’s long-awaited story! And, to round the year off, The Christmas Rose will be published on the 1st November – a sweet novella sequel to The Rose Girls. A lot of you have been asking me what happened to the Hamilton sisters next, so now you’ll be able to find out!
In the meantime, have you read my three 2017 releases: Natural Born Readers, Love in an English Garden and Christmas with the Book Lovers?
Pre-order The Heart of the Garden:
For a few days only, you can get The Christmas Collection for just 99p at Amazon – that’s three festive novellas for less than a pound! Merry Christmas!
I love the idea of sitting around a roaring fire, the curtains drawn against a dark, cold night whilst drinking a glass of mulled wine, eating a mince pie… and telling ghost stories! The Victorians loved this tradition too and the great master of the ghost story, M R James, used to read his own ghost stories to a rapt audience each Christmas.
I wanted to explore this wonderful tradition in Christmas with the Book Lovers and who better to tell a ghost story or two than the Nightingale family from The Book Lovers series? I had so much fun writing the stories they told, highlighting the likes of Gytrash and Black Shuck as well as making up one of two ghosts of my own.
I also wanted to drawn on the rich history of Suffolk and how very well it lends itself to a good supernatural tale. A few years ago, we visited the church at Stonham Aspal and discovered the tomb of a wonderful knight. I just knew he’d find his way into a story one day.
Suffolk is a landscape rich in churches and Holy Trinity at Blythburgh is one of the best, famous for its beautiful angels.
And here’s the marvellous old door with the strange scorch marks on it, thought to be the claw marks of the legendary dog, Black Shuck who is said to have run through the church during a thunderstorm in 1577, killing two of its parishioners.
Christmas with the Book Lovers is a slight move away from the essentially romantic Christmas tales my readers might know me for, but I hope there’s still enough romance, sparkle and warmth to keep everyone happy. And maybe – just maybe – the odd shiver down the spine too!
Love in an English Garden has been chosen as part of the Kindle Monthly Deal throughout November and is just 99p in the UK.
And Australian readers can get the ebook for just $1.49 this month. Happy reading, everyone!
It always amazes me when a moment from my real life finds its way into a novel. Sometimes, it might be something that’s happened to me recently but, in Natural Born Readers, I’ve mined a moment from the late-eighties when our family home was burgled and all our jewellery was stolen.
What really hurt was that some of the pieces taken had belonged to my great grandmother, Emma, including a gold locket with her initials engraved upon it. This would have meant absolutely nothing to anybody else other than what the gold would have been worth melted down, and it still stings me to this day that such a lovely family heirloom has been lost. I’ve given this little moment in my life to dear Flo Lohman and it I hope it resonates with readers. And, if any of you come across a gold locket with the initials ‘E F’ upon it, do let me know!
I’m really excited to launch my new novella today. Part of the Book Lovers series, it’s a sparkly spooky story which can be happily read as a standalone and it’s just perfect for this time of year when the nights are drawing in and you want to snuggle up on the sofa with a jolly good read!
Here’s a bit more about the book:
Callie Logan hasn’t been able to stop smiling since meeting bookseller Sam Nightingale, and she’s thrilled to be spending her first Christmas with his family. For the Nightingales, Christmas Eve is a time for sitting around the fire at Campion House, eating mince pies, drinking mulled wine and reading ghost stories.
As the winter night draws in and the snow begins to fall, the family remembers the Christmas when Sam read from a book over a hundred years old and how strange things started to happen afterwards. Can a book really be haunted? And why is Callie now anxious about the Christmas present she’s bought for Sam?
Available now in ebook and audio
We recently had an M R James-inspired day out – visiting some of the churches he highlights in his non-fiction book Suffolk and Norfolk. Choosing three churches in West Suffolk, we began our exploration at St Mary’s in Combs. James writes of this church that the: “benches are good; but the glass is more noteworthy.”
I adored this bench end of the man reading a book, but another was definitely the stuff of nightmares.And I couldn’t help spying a green demon in the glass!
The second church we visited was at St Mary’s in Woolpit where James highlights the nave-roof, which is double hammer-beam, and the screen which “has had new saints painted on the panels”.
He also writes that “The eagle lectern is old and good”.
The reason I wanted to visit Woolpit was because I’d read that there were crowns carved on the porch. Could these be the three crowns of East Anglia as mentioned in my favourite story of James’s – A Warning to the Curious? James must surely have known about them because he writes that “The south porch is rich and beautiful.”
St Ethelbert in Hesset was our third and final church of the day. James writes that it “claims careful attention” and he points out “the exceptional wall paintings” which includes the Tree of Deadly Sins. It was certainly impressive.
In true Jamesian style, a local turned up and was delighted to show us the vestry, which is normally closed to the public, pointing out the ancient stairs. He also let us climb the bell tower. We felt very privileged and were relieved that he was a lot happier to be there with us than James’s sacristan in Canon Alberic’s Scrapbook!
I’ve always loved poking around churches because you never know what treasures you’re going to discover or what stories you’re going to hear and, having M R James as a guide is such a great bonus. And I’m thrilled that my new novella, Christmas with the Book Lovers pays tribute to James and his work. It’s published as an ebook on 31st October and is available to pre-order now on Amazon.
It’s Publication Day! I’m really excited to share the third novel in my Book Lovers series with you. Natural Born Readers is a story I’ve been dying to tell for a few years now and I can’t wait for you all to read it.
Ben Stratton and Bryony Nightingale. Everybody thought they’d be together forever. But, when Ben leaves the small market town of Castle Clare to travel the world, Bryony is heartbroken, seeing his departure as the ultimate betrayal.
Throwing herself into her work running the much-loved children’s bookshop, Bryony determines to forget Ben and to start dating again. But Ben doesn’t make it easy for her, sending her postcards filled with his love and posting her foreign editions of all the great romantic novels from the countries he’s travelling through.
Then, after six long years, the unexpected happens and Ben returns, determined to win Bryony back. But will she forgive him and does he have the courage to tell her the truth about why he left her?