The Curious Heart of Ailsa Rae by Stephanie Butland #review @under_blue_sky @bonnierzaffre #boldblueheart

The Curious Heart of Ailsa Rae by [Butland, Stephanie]

I am a big fan of Stephanie Butland’s emotive writing. Her last novel, Lost for Words, was one of my top reads last year. (You can read my review of that here.) Loveday and Archie from that book are characters who have stayed with me long after I finished reading. So The Curious Heart of Ailsa Rae had a lot to live up to! Ailsa is not as spiky a character as Loveday and certainly faced very different challenges but she is just as memorable in her own way.

Ailsa has had a heart transplant and this book follows her as she recovers from her operation and begins to live without the shadow of death hanging over her. Thankfully, I  can only imagine what it must be like to live with a life limiting condition but Stephanie Butland makes it clear that there is a huge strain on Ailsa’s friends and family too, particularly on her mum Hayley. The book made me really think about what it must be like for transplant patients afterwards. Along with the relief and gratitude of having that second chance, there must always be the fear of rejection, the worry about what will happen if it doesn’t work out. There must also be a huge psychological impact, getting your head round the fact that someone else has died thus giving you an opportunity to live. All this comes across in the character of Ailsa. She has to come to terms with the fact that she does have a future and that she has to make own decisions, take risks, stand on her own two feet and live again.  Part of the story is told through her blog  and she quite often asks her blog followers to make decisions for her, sometimes with unexpected results. 

In a book which makes you think about organ donation and the difference it makes in someones life,  we are shown through the character of Lennox that it’s not always a happy ending. This is something else which Ailsa has to come to terms with, the fact that she has lost someone she loves because he got too ill for transplant and that it’s just a combination of circumstances which means she got lucky. 

The other main character is Seb, who is a rather well known actor. Theirs is a chance meeting on a radio show about transplant recipients. He has had a corneal transplant and has taken some time off from acting while his eye heals. Ailsa and Seb really hit it off as friends and a lot of their communication is by email. They both have quite a dark sense of humour which comes across in their emails. Having undergone transplants, albeit for different reasons, they both have an understanding and appreciation of what the other has gone through. The passionate dance, the tango, plays quite an important part in both their lives but I don’t want to say in what way for fear of spoilers. 

I loved seeing how Ailsa grew in confidence throughout the book as she began to realise she could trust her new heart and allow herself to make decisions, whether they were right or wrong. I felt content to leave Ailsa at the end of the book, perhaps not knowing for sure how life would turn out for her but knowing that she had the confidence to stand on her own two feet and strike out on her own. 

I must mention the Edinburgh setting of the book. I feel that Stephanie Butland really captured perfectly the atmosphere of my ‘multi-storey city’, as Seb calls it. I was honoured to be asked by her to read a very early copy of the book, to cast my eye over the Edinburgh details and it’s a thrill to see my name mentioned in the thanks at the end. I was pleased to see Portobello mentioned, which is where Lennox lived. I had a bit fun working out where his house would be, not far from my own I reckon, and what pub Ailsa and her mum visited. 

In The Curious Heart of Ailsa Rae, Stephanie Butland has once again proved she can write a compelling story tackling big issues while making the reader feel a real part of her characters’ lives. It’s a warm-hearted story (and yes, I do use that phrase intentionally), funny at times and always feels very grounded in reality. It is a hopeful yet frank look at learning to live with new expectations.

My thanks to the publishers for my copy of this book. It is published by Bonnier Zaffre today in paperback and e-book formats. It will be available from your usual book retailer or you can order a copy online here: Curious Heart

From the back of the book

Ailsa Rae is learning how to live.

She’s only a few months past the heart transplant that – just in time – saved her life. Life should be a joyful adventure. But . . .

Her relationship with her mother is at breaking point and she wants to find her father.
Have her friends left her behind?
And she’s felt so helpless for so long that she’s let polls on her blog make her decisions for her. She barely knows where to start on her own.

Then there’s Lennox. Her best friend and one time lover. He was sick too. He didn’t make it. And now she’s supposed to face all of this without him.

But her new heart is a bold heart. 

She just needs to learn to listen to it . . .


Watch for Me by Candlelight by Kirsty Ferry #review @ChocLitUK @kirsty_ferry

Watch for Me by Candlelight (Choc Lit) (Hartsford Mysteries Book 2) by [Ferry, Kirsty]

I usually like my fiction to be firmly placed in reality, with the likelihood that events within the books could actually happen. I don’t usually read sci-fi or fantasy novels for that reason. However I do have a fondness for a bit of time travel in a book. The first book I can remember reading which had included this idea was Charlotte Sometimes which I read when I was a child and read to my own daughters when they were younger too. The idea of travelling back in time fascinates me, especially if the person going back takes with them all their knowledge of the present day. More recent books with this theme which I have really enjoyed include The Time Traveller’s Wife by Audrey Niffenegger and The Summer of Impossible Things by Rowan Coleman.

In Watch for Me by Candlelight, Kirsty Ferry has her main character Kate move seamlessly between the past and the present. Kate works in a folk museum in the village of Hartsford, close to Hartsford Hall. When she comes across a set of Victorian ice-skates she is quite fascinated by them and wants to find out more about their owner, Catriona Tredegar. And when she meets visiting farrier Theo Kent, she has a strong sense that they have met before….

The connection between Kate and Theo in the present is almost instant as there is a immediate spark of recognition between them. They quickly fall into an easy friendship and it is clear there is a promise of something more for both of them. “It was surprising how easily they managed to chat to each other – as if they had known each other for years.” However, Kate is in a relationship already and Theo has his own issues to contend with. In a similar way, Catriona and Will are also drawn to each other in the past but their love is not without its difficulties, being of very different social standing. 

I loved the detail about all the clocks striking at significant moments and whenever Kate was moving between times. It reminded me of the song ‘My Grandfather’s Clock’ which struck twenty four when he brought his wife home for the first time and then stopped working completely when he died. I liked the idea throughout the book that the house itself recognised Kate and Theo as people who belonged there. “They were and always had been, twin souls.”

I thoroughly enjoyed reading Watch for Me By Candlelight. It was a real page-turner for me with characters I really liked (well, except for Kate’s temporary assistant Jenna and Chris, Kate’s boyfriend!). The moving between the past and present was perfectly done with a real sense that it was all perfectly plausible. I enjoyed too the echoes of the characters and events from the past coming through into the present. The romantic element was beautifully done – I would expect no less in a ChocLit novel. I really hope that we might have a return visit to Hartsford, not just to find out what happens next for Kate, but also to get another glimpse into the history of the hall.

Thanks to Liz at ChocLit for my copy of this book. Watch for Me by Candlelight is available now as an ebook. Visit ChocLit’s website to order a copy for your e-reader: Watch For Me by Candlelight

From the back of the book

“The stars are aligning and it’s time again …”

Working at the Folk Museum in Hartsford village means that Kate Howard is surrounded by all sorts of unusual vintage items. Of course she has her favourites; particularly the Victorian ice skates with a name – ‘CAT’ – mysteriously painted on the sides. 

But what Kate doesn’t realise is how much she has in common with Catriona Aphrodite Tredegar, the original owner of the skates, or how their lives will become strangely entwined. All Kate knows is that as soon as she bumps into farrier Theo Kent, things start getting weird: there’s the vivid, disconcerting visions and then of course the overwhelming sense that she’s met Theo before …

Kirsty Ferry

Kirsty is from the North East of England and won the English Heritage/Belsay Hall National Creative Writing competition in 2009 with the ghostly tale ‘Enchantment’.

Her timeslip novel, ‘Some Veil Did Fall’, a paranormal romance set in Whitby, was published by Choc Lit in Autumn 2014. This was followed by another Choc Lit timeslip, ‘The Girl in the Painting’ in February 2016. ‘The Girl in the Photograph’, published in March 2017, completes the Rossetti Mysteries series. 

You can find out more about Kirsty and her work at, catch her on her Facebook AuthorPage, follow her on Twitter @kirsty_ferry or pop by her blog at

#TenThings about #author Catherine Hokin @cathokin


Today’s #TenThings comes from Catherine Hokin. She is a Glasgow-based author whose fascination with the medieval period began during a History degree which included studies into witchcraft, women and the role of political propaganda. This sparked an interest in hidden female voices resulting in her debut novel, Blood and Roses which brings a new perspective to the story of Margaret of Anjou (1430-1482, wife of Henry VI) and her pivotal role in the Wars of the Roses. Catherine also writes short stories and blogs monthly for The History Girls. You can order a copy of Blood and Roses online by clicking here.

Catherine Hokin


  1. My surname is American (not me, the OH – it’s a trial but someone has to bear it) and everyone pronounces it with a short o not the long one it should have, making it sound like they’re coughing their lungs up. The OH and I are truly divided by a language, especially as I come from a Scouse/Irish background and have a wealth of sayings involving pit ponies and Preston Guilds that are impenetrable for a Chicago boy. They get their own back – when I spoke in a full Scouse accent over there recently, the OH was asked if I needed special assistance.
  2. At university I did my hair and face like Robert Smith from The Cure. You’ll still find Marilyn Manson on my playlist and my idol is Nick Cave – off to Dublin to see him in June. It could get messy. 
  3. The best two books I’ve read in the last 6 months are The Mandibles by Lionel Shriver and Lincoln in the Bardo by George Saunders but my favourite book ever is Wise Children by Angela Carter. 
  4. I hate clowns and bees – apparently I was in a bee swarm as a baby but no one told me until I was in my thirties. Still waiting to hear what the clowns did.
  5. I own a signed copy of Arthur Rackham’s fairy tales – I would climb over the kids to rescue it in a fire so it’s a good thing they’ve both left home.
  6. Getting a novel published and seeing it in bookstores and libraries was the best thing I’ve ever done (sorry kids). Getting the second one out there is the hardest. I have an agent now who really believes I’ll do it but my published second may be the fourth or fifth I write. I’m good with that.
  7. I write all the time which is why I mix short stories with novels and non-fiction pieces, there’s never an excuse for writer’s block. And I really mean all the time – I may be looking at you but there’s a whole different world going on inside.
  8. The maddest thing I’ve ever done happened in Madrid a few years ago. I was with my daughter (she lived there at the time), coming home pretty late and a mugger decided to have a go. He grabbed her bag but got her hair instead and pulled her to the ground. Apparently I don’t have a flight gene. I punched him hard in the face while screaming a string of, apparently, very inventive obscenities – not bad for 5’2. He ran, pursued by two big Spanish guys who promised to finish the job. When we got home, we discovered I had an extra bag. I’d mugged the mugger.
  9. My tipple of choice is Jameson Whiskey – this and the above may not be entirely unconnected.
  10. The best bit of writing advice I’ve ever been given? Submit, all the time or – to paraphrase the divine Mindy Kalling – behave with the entitlement of a tall, blonde, white man. What’s the worst that can happen? Pay competitions a bit extra and you even get feedback. I’ve been published every year since 2014 because I keep working on my short stories and someone caves in and loves them in the end. It’s even starting to pay. Almost enough for a glass of Jameson.

Image result for jameson whisky


Blood and Roses by [Hokin, Catherine]

Blood and Roses

Blood and Roses tells the story of Margaret of Anjou (1430-82), wife of Henry VI and a key protagonist in the Wars of the Roses. This is a feminist revision of a woman frequently imagined only as the shadowy figure demonised by Shakespeare – Blood and Roses examines Margaret as a Queen unable to wield the power and authority she is capable of, as a wife trapped in marriage to a man born to be a saint and as a mother whose son meets a terrible fate she has set in motion. It is the story of a woman caught up in the pursuit of power, playing a game ultimately no one can control…



Catch up with Catherine through her social media and web links:

Twitter @cathokin

The History Girls






The Fear by CL Taylor #review #extract @callytaylor @AvonBooksUK

The Fear: The sensational new thriller from the Sunday Times bestseller, now in a brand new look for 2018 by [Taylor, C.L.]

I have a review of CL Taylor’s latest novel The Fear today as well as a short extract to share. It’s a psychological thriller about Lou Wandsworth who ran off to France when she was younger with her teacher Mike Hughes. Their relationship unsurprisingly didn’t work out and now she has discovered he is involved with another teenage girl. Lou is determined he won’t do the same again and returns home to confront him. In doing so though, she could be putting herself in grave danger.

First of all, here’s the extract:

By the time I got to work I didn’t have more than five minutes to run a comb through my hair and print out my emails before Alison buzzed me to tell me that Dr Wendy Harrison was waiting in reception for me. That was a strange meeting. I’ve met some interesting clients in my time – including the man who talked to my chin rather than looking me in the eye, a woman who continuously tapped a pen against her teeth and the man who addressed all of his questions to my male colleagues rather than me – but I’ve never met anyone like Dr Harrison before. She had a very odd manner for someone with a background in nursing – clinical, rather than caring. I could feel her watching me while Gary gave his presentation and then, after she’d ordered him from the room to make more tea, she stared at me like a specimen under a microscope. Then she started asking me personal questions, her strange, fixed smile not faltering once. As I wondered if she might be on the autistic spectrum, she sprayed me with ink.

Let’s just say I won’t be gutted if we don’t win the bid.

Having now read the book, I can see where that fits in and can tell you Dr Harrison plays a very important part in the book. The Fear was a very unsettling read particularly when it came to the parts about how Lou was ‘groomed’ by Mike when she was younger. Mike was an especially unlikable character both in the past and the present, a real creep. At no point did I feel any sympathy for him whatsoever. It was scary to think about how easy it seemed that a young girl could be taken in by an older man, by playing – or preying – on typical teenage insecurities. The fear and terror experienced by Lou as a young girl was mirrored to a certain extent by Mike in the circumstances he finds himself in in the present. 

The Fear is a dark tale of revenge and just when you think you know where story’s going, the author takes you completely by surprise! 

My thanks to Sabah Khan at Avon for my copy of this book. It was published on March 2nd in paperback and as an e-book. You can order a copy online here: The Fear

From the back of the book

Sometimes your first love won’t let you go…

When Lou Wandsworth ran away to France with her teacher Mike Hughes, she thought he was the love of her life. But Mike wasn’t what he seemed and he left her life in pieces.

Now 32, Lou discovers that he is involved with teenager Chloe Meadows. Determined to make sure history doesn’t repeat itself, she returns home to confront him for the damage he’s caused.

But Mike is a predator of the worst kind, and as Lou tries to bring him to justice, it’s clear that she could once again become his prey…

The million copy Sunday Times bestseller returns with a gripping psychological thriller that will have you on the edge of your seat.

CL Taylor

C.L. Taylor is the Sunday Times bestselling author of five psychological thrillers: THE ACCIDENT, THE LIE, THE MISSING, THE ESCAPE and THE FEAR. Her books have sold in excess of a million copies. She was born in Worcester and spent her early years living in various army camps in the UK and Germany. 

She started writing short stories in 2005 and was published widely in literary and women’s magazines. She also won several short story competitions. C.L. Taylor lives in Bristol with her partner and young son.

Don’t miss the rest of the tour

The Fear - Blog Tour Banner - Part 2


Theo by Amanda Prowse #review @mrsamandaprowse @HoZ_Books

Theo: The heartbreaking sequel to the bestselling Anna by [Prowse, Amanda]

You might remember that I reviewed Anna by Amanda Prowse about a month ago. (You can read that review here.) Billed as One Love, Two Stories, it told of the love between Anna Cole and Theo Montgomery from Anna’s point of view. Now we have the story told from Theo’s point of view.

Having read Anna, I was really keen to read about Theo’s story, not just to find out his take on their relationship but also to learn more about his childhood. He came from a very rich background yet his childhood was not happy. His parents frequently fought and seemed to have very little time for him. His time at the same boarding school his father attended was far from happy. Theo was a shy, sensitive boy who didn’t share the same passion for sport as his father and was regarded as a ‘weirdo’ by the boys at school. Thank goodness for the caring groundskeeper Cyrus Porter, whose kindness made Theo’s time at school bearable. This compassion was something which stayed with Theo throughout his life and one of the scenes towards the end of the book involving Mr Porter and the positive impact he made on many people’s lives was especially poignant.

Although I already knew much of the story of Anna and Theo’s life together, it was still a pleasure to read from Theo’s perspective and get a deeper understanding of what was going on for him and why he acted as he did. I was also pleased with the way the story concluded as when I finished Anna, I really felt I wanted to know that little bit more about how their story progressed. Theo gives us that ending, rounding off their story in an uplifting and hopeful way.

My thanks to Amanda and Simeon Prowse for my review copy of this book. Theo is available now as an ebook with the paperback to follow later in the year. You can order a copy online here: Theo

From the back of the book

There are two sides to every love story. This is Theo’s.

Theo Montgomery grew up in a rich family where he had all the toys and trinkets money could buy. But his childhood was full of neglect and he was bullied at school. Now he is an adult, he longs to find a soulmate. Someone who understands him. Someone who will love him unconditionally.

Then, one day, Theo meets Anna Cole in a lift. Anna grew up in a care home, and has always wanted to create the noisy family life she never had. She brings love and laughter into Theo’s life. But she wants a baby, and Theo can’t imagine bringing a child into this cruel world…

Theo and Anna are two damaged souls, from two different worlds. Is their love for each other enough to let go of the pain of their pasts? Or will Anna and Theo break each others’ hearts?


The Girl I Used to Know by Faith Hogan #review #guestpost & #giveaway @gerhogan @brookcottagebks @aria_fiction

The Girl I Used to Know: A heart-wrenching and heartwarming story of two strangers and one house by [Hogan, Faith]

I’m pleased to be part of the blogtour for The Girl I Used to Know by Faith Hogan and have a busy post for you today with a review, a guest post and a giveaway. I read this book last year and thought it was excellent. I’m sharing my review again and wholeheartedly recommend this book. There’s a chance for you to win a signed copy of the book too – details at the bottom of the page.

My review

In The Girl I Used to Know we have two strong female lead characters in Tess Cuffe and Amanda King. These two share a house though not particularly willingly. Tess rents the scruffy basement flat of Amanda and Richard King’s large and immaculate Georgian house in Dublin. The two do not have what you would call a warm relationship since Richard has tried unsuccessfully and at great expense to evict Tess. 

On the outside, Amanda appears to have the perfect life. In her 40s, she has two children, a beautifully stylish house, a successful and handsome husband and a group of stylish friends. Yet Amanda is increasingly wondering what happened to her life. She hardly sees her husband as he is constantly at work, her teenage son in particular is turning into a sneering youth with barely disguised contempt, she feels that her life has lost its way and she has lost her sense of who she really is along the way.

Tess is in her 60s, lives alone and appears to delight in being cantankerous. Her health isn’t the best and she has no friends. She didn’t initially seem to be a character who I would warm to she seemed to have very little redeeming characteristics. But with the arrival of Matt on her doorstep (a great addition to the story!) we soon begin to see her softer side.

Through the chapters woven through the book from years gone by, the author shows her readers the girls both Tess and Amanda used to be. I was so intrigued about what had happened in Tess’s life in particular to change her from the optimistic girl moving to Dublin to start at Uni to the grumpy woman, living alone with no enthusiasm for life. Faith Hogan writes movingly and with great insight about how Tess and Amanda’s hopes and dreams slowly ebbed away leaving them both with disappointing realities, and lives they felt trapped in. I loved the way the women blossomed and grew in confidence as they took the first tentative steps towards friendship just as their new keep fit routines saw them taking steps round the square where they lived. The author had just the right balance of insights into the past blended with their present lives to create understanding and empathy with her characters.

A wonderful warm-hearted book about missed opportunities, second chances, friendship and how it’s never too late to have a new adventure and to find love.

And now a guest post from Faith about taking ideas ‘From Imagination to the Page’

One of the most asked questions, when you tell people that you’re a writer is – where do you get your ideas? Most writers will annoy the socks off you with – ideas are everywhere! And, unfortunately, that is very true. However, what they don’t tell you is that while an idea is the seed, the finished product, is often nothing at all like how the book was meant to be.

The Girl I Used To Know began life when I was sitting at a meeting with a lady I know at a local diet club. I went along for moral support and what struck me each week – (apart from being inspired to add new and interesting twists to old dinner ideas) was how many women attend these meetings. I would know some of these women for years and each have their own story, all of them very interesting, but none of them really what I needed for a book! On the other hand, as we attended more meetings, it became very apparent, that it was a place to build relationships. It was a space to share; often details completely unrelated to fighting the good fight came up. One woman talked of her sister’s cancer diagnoses, another of her French mother-in-law who was intent on shovelling as much fresh cream into every dish as she could manage. All of these stories are the fabric of what makes us who we are and while I didn’t want to take and use them, the idea that we find a place to connect like this stuck with me. It was a safe place where women could share and it made me think of how we make friendships as we get a little older. Some people are good at it, while others struggle to reach beyond the tight circle they’ve always had.

I wanted to write a book about second chances, more so than about the idea of re-invention through changing your weight or how you looked. Some of the details in the finished book remain the same, however, much of that book ended up being cut to pieces, with a third voice completely cast aside to make the book a stronger story. My diet club, for as long as it lasted was based in the Swift Centre, on the Georgian square where my characters live. It was a way of bringing them together. I had characters who lived in the same street but inhabited different worlds. The idea of the diet club meant that suddenly, they were sitting next to each other and not just passing on the street, nodding curtly or in the case of some perhaps ignoring completely. Now they had to speak to each other and within the hierarchy of the diet club, they were suddenly on the same level. A weighing scales and BMI report does not judge you on your annual income or the success you’ve made of your life. It seemed to me the perfect central point for all the action.

Books are a funny thing, certainly the writing of them is a constant throwing up of questions and surprises and by the time I had completed a second draft, it seemed the story had outgrown that initial starting point. Another draft and the eagle eye of my agent meant it was all but relegated to the size of a parking space and suddenly, not a very useful one for all the words I had invested in it. Very often, you come to a point, where you hear those words that have been uttered oh so often – all about killing those babies? That point came for me near the very end and although there’s some re-invention, the initial idea that was the birthing pool for The Girl I Used To Know, remains where it belongs, somewhere in the back of my imagination, turning wheels for perhaps another day! 


Amazon UK:

Amazon US:






Faith Hogan

Faith Hogan is an original voice in women’s fiction. Her stories are warm and rooted in a contemporary Irish landscape which has lost none of its wit, charm or emotion thanks to its modern vibe. 

Faith was born in Ireland. She gained an Honours Degree in English Literature and Psychology from Dublin City University and a Postgraduate Degree from University College, Galway. She was a winner in the 2014 Irish Writers Centre Novel Fair – an international competition for emerging writers.

Her debut novel ‘My Husbands Wives’ is a contemporary women’s fiction novel set in Dublin, published by Aria Fiction in 2016. Her second novel, ‘Secrets We Keep,’ is published in February 2017 – it has been included on the Netgalley ‘Hot List 2017.’ Her third novel – ‘The Girl I Used To Know’ is out in December 2017.

She is currently working on her next novel. She lives in the west of Ireland with her husband, four children and a rather busy chocolate Labrador. She’s a writer, reader, enthusiastic dog walker and reluctant jogger – except of course when it is raining!



Twitter: @gerhogan

Goodreads Author Page:  Faith Hogan



Don’t miss your chance to win a signed copy of The Girl I Used To Know (open internationally)

Click here to enter the giveaway





Redferne Lane by Sarah Scholefield #review @thistlebooks @SJLScholefield

Redferne Lane by [Scholefield, Sarah]

One of the great things about book blogging is that I sometimes get offered books I might never have come across otherwise. That is the case with this book which David Haviland from Thistle Publishing contacted me about. And I’m so glad he did as it is a hidden gem.

Redferne Lane tells the story of young widow Grace who is grieving the loss of her husband Ezra. She is not coping well at all and has all but cut herself off from everyone, turning up late for work if at all and making all kinds of errors. She gets by on an ill advised cocktail of pills, cigarettes and alcohol. The reappearance of Ezra’s brother, Torin, brings back all kinds of uncomfortable memories for her. However, he may just be the person who manages to force her to live again. As Grace starts to get involved with the other residents of Redferne Lane, she realises she’s not the only one with problems to face.

The structure of the book is really rather clever. The story is told in two timelines with that of the present moving forward in time, while that in the past moves backwards in time. Yet somehow they come together, with the past of course explaining the present.

Grace is a fascinating character. You really get to understand her and get a feel for her grief and guilt. She is her own worst enemy, which she comes to realise to throughout the book. Through finally being forced to get involved with the lives of her neighbours, some of whom are family through her marriage to Ezra, she begins to slowly heal from her past pain and to look forward to a different kind of future. There’s plenty of drama throughout the book with a budding romance between truculent teens Eliza and Jerome,  tending to her her elderly neighbour Ada who despite her failing physical health is certainly still one feisty character and helping out with her sister in law who has two young sons and is about to have her third child. Torin is a very significant part of the story in both the past and the present and is a very well drawn character. Like Grace, he is not without his faults and the two have a lot to come to terms with regarding Ezra and their shared past.

I enjoyed reading Redferne Lane which I found really compelling. The author made her characters and their lives seem vividly real to me. I will be looking out for more from this author in the future.

Thanks to the publishers Thistle Books for my copy of the book from Netgalley. Redferne Lane is available now in ebook and paperback formats. It should be available from good book retailers or you can order a copy online here: Redferne Lane

From the back of the book

Ezra had it all when he died. A good job. A nice house. His loving wife, Grace.

Grace doesn’t even realise she’s struggling to keep herself together. Until Torin turns up in Redferne Lane. It’s been nearly two years since Grace has seen Torin. Since Ezra’s funeral. Now Torin is back in her life, emotions from the past are resurfacing and Grace begins to realise elements of her life are going wrong. She’s not sure she can take control.

But Grace isn’t the only one with problems in Redferne Lane. Josie has a husband and young family to contend with. Ada is facing the difficulties of old age. Jerome thinks he’s found the perfect girl. Eliza just wants to grow up. And Torin isn’t sure he should have what he wants. They all begin to turn to Grace for answers. Can Grace look beyond her own difficulties and help those around her, even while she’s trying to save herself?


Sarah Scholefield

Sarah Scholefield initially trained as molecular biologist gaining a BSc (Hons) in Biology from The University of the West of England. After realising she wasn’t cut out for life in a laboratory she worked in numerous schools across the West Country. She has always enjoyed making up stories in her head and finally began to write them down. In 2014 she gained an MA in Creative Writing from Bath Spa University. Redferne Lane is her first novel. She lives in Somerset with her husband and children.