Bees, honey and a big black cat! | #guestpost from #author Kirsty Ferry | Bea’s Magical Summer Garden | @Kirsty_Ferry @ChocLitUK

I’m delighted to be joined by regular blog guest and a favourite author of mine, Kirsty Ferry. Her most recent book, Bea’s Magical Summer Garden, was published by ChocLit last week. You’ll find full details below. I posted my review on Saturday so if you missed that, here’s the link: Bea’s Magical Summer Garden. Kirsty’s written a great guest post about the book and how a certain cat just seemed to insist on making an appearance!

Bea’s Magical Summer Garden is the sixth in the Schubert series. If you’re familiar with the series, you’ll know it revolves around a big black cat called Schubert who enjoys meddling in people’s love lives – and, to be honest, he wasn’t going to be in this one, but I got a bit of creative block while I was writing the story, and couldn’t work out exactly what the problem was.

I had a lovely setting – Bea’s Garden – I had two main characters – Bea and Marcus – and I had a good idea of what would happen in the story, with a little bit of Secret Garden thrown in and the potential to wave a ghost, very briefly, around the end of the story. But I couldn’t quite manage to get in the flow and write as I normally do. There were bits where I just thought some feline activity would work quite well, and a little bit of the Schubert-novella humour could slip in. So I re-saved the document under a different title (I delete none of my writing, so the idea was the original would still be there if my experiment didn’t work), and changed it in my head to a Schubert book. I started working on it as such, and suddenly I had a decent word count and the opportunity to bring in people like Mags and Isabel, who you might remember from earlier Schubert books as Nessa’s nieces. (Nessa owns Schubert, by the way!) And I ended up really liking the way the book was going.

The bits of humour came more easily, and it also gave me scope to introduce Bertie the Bee and not, I hope, to be judged too harshly for putting another interesting animal in the book. I did do some research around bees, and the folklore surrounding them is lovely. There was too much to add to the book without looking like an info-dump, but if Bertie ever makes another appearance, it’s something to think about. The idea of honey and hives just seems timeless – and not only is honey good to eat, but it’s nature’s own antiseptic. When my son was at primary school, he had a nasty tick bite on his wrist which spread into a huge bullseye shape, and every health specialist I asked said oh it’s an insect bite, use antihistamine cream – and nothing would heal it up. A teaching assistant at school, an older lady, caught me one evening as I was collecting him, and suggested we use some honey on the bite, which now looked to be causing a nasty scar and was still bad after a few weeks. She said she’d used honey on her grown-up sons when they were little and swore by it, so I decided to give it a go. Within a week, it had calmed right down and after two weeks, the mark was completely gone and fully healed. A spoonful of local honey a day is also good, apparently, for hayfever; to stop you from suffering so much with it. I don’t need to be told twice to enjoy honey every day, so that’s good enough for me!

On that note, I hope you enjoy Bea’s Magical Summer Garden; and also enjoy the fact that Schubert and Bertie seem to live in such a lovely world!

About the book

What’s not to love about Bea’s Garden?

Its higgledy-piggledy layout, fascinating plants and occasional resident black cat makes it the most charming place to visit on a sunny afternoon. Plus Bea has bees – and her Honey Festival is sure to create a buzz.

But not everyone thinks Bea’s Garden is the bee’s knees.

The Man at the Big House next door has been a thorn in Bea’s side for the longest time, with his unnecessarily snippy letters about her beautiful climbing plants ruining his ‘clean lines’. Could he and his poisonous project manager Carla pose problems for her Festival? Or can Bea rely on the Man’s cousin – and her newest annual pass holder – Marcus Rainton to fight her corner?

With bee best friends, big black cats, a secret garden gate and a surprising identity reveal, Bea’s Garden is surely in line for its most magical summer yet!

You can purchase Bea’s Magical Summer Garden here

About the Author

Kirsty Ferry is from the North East of England and lives there with her husband and son. She won the English Heritage/Belsay Hall National Creative Writing competition and has had articles and short stories published in various magazines. Her work also appears in several anthologies, incorporating such diverse themes as vampires, crime, angels and more.

Kirsty loves writing ghostly mysteries and interweaving fact and fiction. The research is almost as much fun as writing the book itself, and if she can add a wonderful setting and a dollop of history, that’s even better.

Her day job involves sharing a building with an eclectic collection of ghosts, which can often prove rather interesting.

Follow Kirsty on Twitter: https://twitter.com/kirsty_ferry
Like her page on Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/kirsty.ferry.author
Take a look at her website: http://www.rosethornpress.co.uk/


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