Today I welcome Meredith Whitford to the blog and invite her to share #TenThings she’d like her readers to know about her. Thanks to Kelly at LoveBooksGroupTours for inviting me to take part in the blog tour. Missing Christina is available now in paperback and as an ebook and you can order your copy online by clicking here.
- I live in Adelaide, capital of south Australia, near the sea. Beautiful beaches near here. Not that I ever go into the sea, you understand, because a) a crab bit me when I was 7, and b) see Thing 2.
- I’m so short-sighted I’m legally blind, although I manage with contact lenses + reading glasses, but I’m not allowed to drive. Also I hate being in circumstances where I have to manage ‘blind’, like when swimming. Getting salt water in your eyes while wearing contacts is no fun; nor is losing your glasses when a wave you can’t properly see sneaks up. I love my Kindle because I can increase the font size – often, when I go to re-read an old favourite in print format, I find the font too small, especially in those old Penguins. Also see Thing 3.
- I learnt to read before I started school, and have been a print-addicted speed reader ever since. I get through at least two books a day.
- I was trying to think of who my favourite fictional character is, and couldn’t decide on one, except perhaps Bertie Wooster. Instead I have favourite books/series of books: George MacDonald Fraser’s “Flashman” series; all of Robertson Davies; all of P G Wodehouse; all of Reginald Hill; Evelyn Waugh; Kate Atkinson’s Jackson Brodie books, although for some reason I can’t get on with her others; of course all of Phil Rickman’s, especially his Merrily Watkins series; anything by Bill Bryson. I read a lot of crime novels, and apart from a few outstanding modern writers (Reginald Hill, Michael Robotham, Harry Bingham, Stuart MacBride — I do like a good serial killer novel — I prefer the so-called “Golden Age” writers, on which I did my Master’s thesis. Favourite individual books: Peter Temple’s The Broken Shore; J M Coetzee’s Disgrace; Nabokov’s Lolita for the grace, elegance and wit of the writing, not the subject matter (whether or not you think Humbert is an unreliable narrator); Franny and Zooey by J D Salinger; Gone with the Wind; The Great Gatsby; Between Silk and Cyanide by Leo Marks, about SOE’s code war. Can’t remember the rest, although I’ll read almost anything about World War II and especially the code-breaking and spying side of it.
- I’m a member of the Richard III Society and in fact began the South Australian Branch in 1983. When we ‛did’ the play at school an enlightened teacher told us the difference between drama and propaganda, and the way the first can serve the second. She suggested we read Josephine Tey’s The Daughter of Time. I got hooked, and many years later wrote Treason, a novel about Richard III. It’s still the favourite of my books and I’m proud to say it won a readers’ award. I wrote Shakespeare’s Will because I read a good deal about Shakespeare and got sick of (mostly male) biographers’ certainty that his wife was an illiterate harpy he did his best to avoid. My Anne Shakespeare is the model for all the outspoken, clever women Shakespeare wrote about. Churchill’s Rebels: Jessica Mitford & Esmond Romilly was written in reaction to the anti-Jessica/Esmond bias in most of the Mitford biographies. That book also won a readers’ award, and brought me the friendship of Winston Churchill’s great-nephew Edmund Romilly and his wife. Very sadly, Ed died recently, so I won’t say any more about that.
- I don’t like chocolate much, except the occasional bit of dark chocolate. With bitter orange. I do like champagne.
- Although I am not religious, I’m glad of a religious upbringing because it makes me good at quizzes and cryptic crosswords. Ditto having learnt some Latin.
- I have ME/CFS, so have to be careful how I spend my small amount of energy.
- I have, and usually have had, two cats. Without them, I would have written so much more.
- I’m adopted, and don’t like it. Hence Missing Christina.
About the book
As death approaches, family secrets will be revealed…
As Jaques’ mother clings to life, he and his brother Toby wait for the inevitable.
‘Not long now,’ the Doctor says grimly.
As they deal with all the business of death, Jaques reflects on his relationship with the mother he loved.
She was fun, amusing, witty – she knew how to be happy.
She was a good companion, and she was his friend.
But as the family come to terms with their grief, they discover secrets from the past that threaten to change everything.
Can the family manage to salvage Christina’s memory and the family ties that hold them together?
And is everyone in the family being honest?
From the talented Meredith Whitford, Missing Christina is a heartfelt, gripping tale of family strife and parental love.
Find out more about the author and her work
Facebook: Meredith Whitford Author
Don’t miss the rest of the tour