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Saturday, 23 July 2016

Author Q & A with Midge Raymond


My Last Continent by  Midge Raymond (Out 28 July, Text Publishing).

Picking up huge praise from authors such as Graeme Simsion, Karen Joy Fowler and ML Stedman, My Last Continent is a summer must-read. Part love story, part elegy, and perfect for the ‘armchair adventurer’, the novel takes us to the end of the world – to the glacial mountains, cleaving icebergs, and frigid waters of Antarctica—where Deb Gardner and Keller Sullivan feel at home. For the few blissful weeks they spend each year studying the habits of emperor and Adélie penguins, Deb and Keller can escape the frustrations and sorrows of their separate lives and find solace in their work and in each other. But Antarctica, like their fleeting romance, is tenuous, imperiled by the world to the north…

Amongst its poetic prose and triangular love story, Raymond also takes a moving and memorable look at the effects of a warming world. She reveals the cute penguins of the Antarctic as extremely complex creatures with problems akin to those of humans – seeking long-lost mates, nurturing their chicks and adapting to suit their ever-changing surroundings. Matters of both the heart, and science are taken into consideration and it as beautiful as both the landscape and romance it describes. It’s heartfelt, it’s moving and above all…unique.

Title:        My Last Continent
Author:    Midge Raymond
Published By: Text Publishing
Date:        July 28th 2016
Link:        UK: Amazon   US: Amazon


Author Q & A with Midge Raymond

Today we are delighted to welcome Midge Raymond to Sincerely Book Angels blog.

What was the inspiration behind this novel?
Antarctica has always been intriguing to me, and I was fortunate to have had the opportunity to visit in 2004. Several days into the journey, I witnessed a fellow traveller slip and fall on a patch of ice on the edge of a penguin colony. I appeared to be the only one who saw him, and fortunately he got up immediately, more embarrassed than injured. But already I’d been hearing concerns from our onboard naturalists about the dangers of accidents at the bottom of the world, I began to wonder: What if this man hadn’t gotten up? This question became the inspiration for a short story, and that story in turn grew into My Last Continent, which envisions an even larger accident in the Southern Ocean, one involving thousands rather than just one.

  
Did you always want to be a writer?
Yes, always. I’ve been writing since I was a  young girl, though as I got older I switched from making up stories to telling real ones. I published my first article in a local newspaper when I was fifteen years old and continued in journalism until my mid-twenties, when I returned to making up stories. I published my first short story in 1999; my first book, a short story collection, Forgetting English, in 2009; and my first novel, My Last Continent, this year.

What other jobs have you had?
I’ve been lucky to have always found work related to writing. I’ve worked in publishing, as a production editor as well as a copywriter; I’ve worked as a staff writer and editor; I’ve taught English as a second language as well as journalism and creative writing; and I co-founded a small press dedicated to environmental literature. It’s been wonderful because every job has helped me grow as a writer.

How did it feel when your first novel was published?
It has been very exciting, and I’ve loved every minute of getting MY LAST CONTINENT out into the world. I’m so fortunate to be working with fantastic publishing teams in many corners of the world.

Have you ever had writer's block? If so how did you overcome it?
Once I’m into a project, I rarely have writer’s block — but I often have trouble with the blank page. To get around this, I take a notebook and find some writing prompts (or make them up myself), and just freewrite until I have a foundation for a scene or a character.

What motivates you to keep writing?
It’s mostly the joy of doing it that motivates me, but I also think all writers need to have something to say to stay motivated, and for me, writing about the Antarctic and its magnificent creatures has been very inspiring. I hope that readers come away not only enjoying the novel but appreciating the continent as well.

Do your characters’ moods ever affect your mood and vice versa?
Definitely! The character of Deb in MY LAST CONTINENT, for example, grew from my anxiety about tourism in Antarctica and the fate of the penguins on a warming planet. So, while she is actually nothing like me, I channelled a lot of my concerns into her character. And if I’m working on a story that is really light or really sad, I sometimes take a little of this with me once I step off the page.

What three pieces of advice would you give to an aspiring writer?
1. Write what you want to write, not what you think others want to read.
2. Learn as much about the publishing industry as you can.
3. Never give up.

Which authors inspire you?
I love books that tell amazing stories related to animals and the environment, and a few favourites include Karen Joy Fowler’s We Are All Completely Beside Ourselves, Ann Pancake’s Strange As This Weather Has Been, and Barbara Kingsolver’s Flight Behavior.

What are you reading at the moment?
I just finished reading Adam Haslett’s Imagine Me Gone, and I’ve just started reading Colum McCann’s TransAtlantic. Next on my stack are Lionel Shriver’s new book, The Mandibles, and War of the Encyclopaedists.

If your book was made into a film what song would you choose for the opening credits?
I have no idea! But I think I would choose something instrumental rather than something with lyrics.

Who would you choose to play your favourite character in the film of your book?
I would definitely try to fit George Clooney into the film somehow, even if I had to create a new character.

What is your next book about?
My next book is still in its very early stages, but it looks as though it’ll deal with some of the same themes as MY LAST CONTINENT — isolation, nature, a catastrophic event — though everything else about it is completely different.

And now think about the books you've read and just give the first one that comes into your head for our quickfire 'Which book round.'

Which book has made you:

Laugh out loud?
Nora Ephron’s I Feel Bad About My Neck

Cry your heart out?
Karen Joy Fowler’s We Are All Completely Beside Ourselves

Want to read it again?
Lionel Shriver’s We Need To Talk About Kevin

Think more?
Just about anything by Margaret Atwood

Wish it would be made into a film?
I can’t think of one! I think most books are perfect as books.

Shocked?
Undercover: The True Story of Britain’s Secret Police by Paul Lewis & Rob Evans

Scared?
Elizabeth Kolbert’s The Sixth Extinction

Thank you so much for joining us on our blog today and good luck with the book.


About the Author




Midge Raymond is an award-winning short-story writer who worked in publishing in New York before moving to Boston, where she taught creative writing. She has published two books for writers, Everyday Writing and Everyday Book Marketing. Midge lives in the Pacific Northwest, where she is co-founder of the boutique publisher Ashland Creek Press. My Last Continent is her first novel.

Tuesday, 19 July 2016

Review and Extract from Melody Bittersweet and The Girls' Ghostbusting Agency

An absolutely hilarious, totally entertaining, spookily sexy read that you won't be able to put down!


Life’s tricky for Melody Bittersweet. She’s single, she's addicted to sugar and super heroes, her family are officially bonkers and ... she sees dead people. Is it any wonder no-one’s swiping right on Tinder?
Waking up lonely on her twenty-seventh birthday, Melody finally snaps. She can’t carry on basing all of her life decisions on the advice of her magic 8 ball; things have got to change.

Fast forward two months, and she’s now the proud proprietor of her very own ghostbusting agency – kind of like in the movies but without the dodgy white jumpsuits. She’s also flirting with her ex Leo Dark, fraternising with her sexy enemy in alleyways, and she’s somehow ended up with a pug called Lestat.

Life just went from dull to dynamite and it’s showing no sign of slowing up anytime soon. Melody’s been hired to clear Scarborough House of its incumbent ghosts, there’s the small matter of a murder to solve, and then there are the two very handsome, totally inappropriate men hoping to distract her from the job…

Welcome to Chapelwick, home of the brand new and hilarious Girls Ghostbusting Agency series, where things really do go bump in the night.

This is the PERFECT choice for fans of Marian Keyes, Sophie Kinsella or Lindsey Kelk, with an extra helping of hauntings and hilarity!

Title:        Melody Bittersweet and the Girls' Ghostbusting Agency
Author:    Kitty French
Published By: Bookouture
Date:        July 14th 2016
Link:        UK: Amazon   US: Amazon

My Review

Melody Bittersweet and the Girls Ghostbusting Agency

If I had to use just one word to sum up this book then that word would be 'delightful.'

I really enjoyed meeting Melody and her crazy family who all see dead people.

It was great fun accompanying Melody on her journey to create her own Ghostbusting agency along with her fearless friend Marina. They soon take on a young man called Artie who is painfully shy, the relationship they forged with him actually brought me to tears as I have a son who is painfully shy and I think Kitty captured his reaction to being accepted perfectly.

The story follows with a handsome love interest or two and becomes a ghostly whodunit as Melody tries to discover the truth about a murder which took place over a hundred years ago. The characters are well thought out and mostly lovable apart from the horrible ones who are meant to be nasty.

Melody has a lovely bubbly personality and whilst feeling satisfied that the mystery was resolved I feel that I'm already missing her.

Thanks to Bookouture for the ARC X

Sincerely
Book Angel x

Here is an extract from the book...Enjoy!


Chapter One 

‘So, what do you do with your spare time, Melody?’



I look my date square in his pretty brown eyes and lie to him. ‘Oh, you know. The usual.’ I shrug to convey how incredibly normal I am. ‘I read a lot . . . Go to the movies. That kind of thing.’ 

I watch Lenny digest my words, and breathe a sigh of relief when his eyes brighten.

‘Which genre?’

‘Movies or books?’ I ask, stalling for time because, in truth, I don’t get much in the way of spare time to do either.

‘Movies. Action or romance? No, let me guess.’ He narrows his eyes and studies me intently. ‘You look like a sucker for a rom-com.’

‘Do I?’ I’m genuinely surprised. I’m five foot three and look more like Wednesday Addams than a Disney princess. Maybe Wednesday Addams is over-egging it, but you get the idea; I’m brunette and my dress sense errs on the side of edgy. I don’t think anyone has ever looked at me and thought whimsy. Maybe Lenny sees something everyone else has missed, me included. I quite like that idea, mainly because everyone who knows my family has a head full of preconceptions about me, based on the fact that my family are all crackers.

‘Four Weddings?’ He shrugs hopefully.

I nod, not mentioning that the only part of that particular movie I enjoyed was the funeral.

‘The Holiday?’

Again, I try to look interested and hold my tongue, because I’m sure he doesn’t want to hear that I’d rather stick needles in my eyes than ever watch an over-optimistic Kate Winslet drag some old guy around a swimming pool again.

I’m relieved when the bill arrives and we can get out of there, because so far Lenny has turned out to be a pretty stellar guy and somehow I’ve managed to convince him that I walk on the right side of the tracks. Maybe this time, things will be different.

Lenny pulls his dull, salesman’s saloon into the cobbled cartway beside my building and kills the engine. I don’t mind dull. In fact, my life could really use a bit of dull right now, so I shoot him my most seductive smile, cross my fingers that my mother will be in bed, and invite him in for coffee.

Oh, just when it had all been going so well. Why couldn’t I have just given him a goodnight kiss, with maybe the smallest hint of tongue as a promise, then sent him on his way? He’d have called for a second date, I’m sure of it.

But no. I got greedy, pulled him by the hand through the dark back door, placing my finger against my lips to signal he should be quiet as we tip-toed past my mother’s apartment and up the old wooden staircase to my place.

He rests his hand on my waist as I turn the key, and a small thrill shoots down my back. Look at me, winning at this being-an-adult thing today! Dinner with an attractive man, sparkling conversation, and now back to mine for coffee . . . and maybe even a little fooling around. It’s not that I’m a virgin or anything, but it would be fair to call my love life patchy of late. By ‘of late’ I mean the last two years, ever since Leo Dark and I called things off. Well, by Leo and I, I mean Leo called things off, citing conflict of interests. Ha. Given that he was referring to the fact that my mad-as-a-bag-of-cats family are the only other psychics in town besides him, he was, at least in part, right. 

But enough of Leo and my lamentable love life. Right now, all I want is for Lenny not to know anything at all about my peculiar family, to keep seeing me as a cool, regular, completely normal girl, and then to kiss me.

‘You remind me of Clara Oswald,’ Lenny whispers behind me at the top of the stairs. ‘All big brown eyes and clever one-liners. It’s very sexy.’

Lord, I think he’s just brushed a kiss against the back of my neck! My door sticks sometimes so I shoulder it open, aiming for firm and graceful but, I fear, ending up looking more like a burly police SWAT guy ramming it down. Thankfully, Lenny seems to take it in his stride and follows me into my apartment. Then I flick on the table lamp only to discover that my mother is standing on my coffee table in a too-short, too-sheer, baby-blue negligee with her arms raised towards the ceiling and her head thrown back. 

‘Shit!’ Lenny swears down my ear, clearly startled. He isn’t to blame. My mother’s a striking woman, ballerina-tall and slender with silver hair that falls in waves well beyond her shoulder blades. It isn’t grey. It’s been pure silver since the day she was born, and right now she looks as if she’s just been freshly crucified on my coffee table.

I sigh as I drop my bag down by the lamp. So much for me being normal. 

‘Err, mother?’

Slowly, she takes several heaving breaths and opens her eyes, changing from crazy lady to almost normal human lady. She stares at us.

‘For God’s sake, Melody,’ she grumbles, taking her hands from above her head and planting them on her hips. ‘I almost had the connection then. He’s hiding out in the loft, I’m sure of it.’

I risk a glance over my shoulder at Lenny, who sure isn’t kissing my neck anymore. 

He lifts his eyebrows at me, a silent ‘what the hell?’ and then looks away when my mother beckons to him like a siren luring a fisherman onto the rocks. 

‘Your hand, please, young man.’

‘No!’ I almost yell, but Lenny is already across the room with his hand out to help her down. My mother eyes me slyly as she steps from the table, keeping a firm hold of Lenny’s hand.

‘Long lifeline,’ she murmurs, tracing her red talon across Lenny’s palm.

‘Mother,’ I warn, but my somber, cautionary tone falls on her selectively deaf ears. I expected nothing else, because she’s pulled this trick before. Admittedly, the standing-on-the-table thing is a new twist, but she’s got form in scoping out my prospective boyfriends to make sure they’ll fit in with our screwball family from the outset. Not that her romantic gauge is something to put any stock in; Leo passed her tests with flying colours and look how that ended up. I got my heart broken and he got a spot on morning TV as the resident psychic. Where’s the justice in that? 

Look, we may as well get the clanky old skeleton out of the family closet early on here, people. It’s going to come out sooner or later, and despite my attempts to pull the wool over Lenny’s eyes, there’s never any running away from this thing for long.

My name’s Melody Bittersweet, and I see dead people. 

It’s not only me. I’m just the latest in a long line of Bittersweets to have the gift, or the curse, depending on how you look at it. My family has long since celebrated our weirdness; hence the well-established presence of our family business, Blithe Spirits, on Chapelwick High Street. We’ve likely been here longer than the actual chapel at the far end of the street. That’s probably why, by and large, we’re accepted by the residents of the town, in a ‘they’re a bunch of eccentrics, but they’re our bunch of eccentrics,’ kind of way. What began as a tiny, mullion-windowed, one-room shop has spread out along the entire row over the last two hundred years; we now own a run of three terraced properties haphazardly knocked into one, big, rambling place that is both business and home to not only me, but also to my mother, Silvana, and her mother, Dicey. Gran’s name isn’t actually Dicey, it’s Paradise, officially, but she’s gone by Dicey ever since she met my Grandpa Duke on her fifteenth birthday and he wrote Dicey and Duke inside a chalk heart on the back wall of the building. He may as well have written it on her own racing heart.

‘Silvana!’ 

Speak of the devil. Does no one go to bed around here? 

I open my door to find Gran on the threshold with her hand raised, poised to knock. I guess I should be glad she’s slightly more respectably dressed, if a floor-length, purple shot-silk kimono, bearing huge technicolor dragons could be considered as such. Her usually pin-curled gold hair is piled elegantly on her head and she wears a slash of fire-engine-scarlet lipstick for good measure. Most people couldn’t carry the look off, but thanks to her poise, confidence and couldn’t-care-less attitude, Grandma Dicey wears it with artful success. She glides past me without invitation and gazes at my mother and Lenny, who are still hand-in-hand on the rug.

God.

First thing tomorrow morning, I swear, I’m going to look for a new place to live, somewhere, anywhere, that is not in the same building as my mother and my gran. Don’t get me wrong, it’s a charming old place and I love my family dearly. It’s not even as if I don’t have my own space here, because, theoretically at least, I do. Mum and Gran have the ground floor apartment behind Blithe Spirits, and I have the smaller flat upstairs, at the back. In lots of ways this makes me fortunate; I get to have a nice little home of my own and stay close to my family. It would all be fine and dandy, were it not for the fact that my family are officially bonkers and liable to come up and let themselves into my flat – using the spare key I gave them for dire emergencies only – and embarrass the shit out if me.

‘Why is Silvana entertaining a man half her age in your flat?’ Gran looks from me to my mother. ‘You should have said you were expecting company, darling. I’d have gone out.’ She touches her hand lightly against her hair. ‘Put a towel on the doorknob or something, isn’t that the modern way to signal these things? Don’t come a knockin’ if the caravan’s rockin’?’

She looks spectacularly pleased with herself, and one glance at Lenny tells me that he knows he’s way out of his depth with these two and is in the process of writing me off as the worst date he’s ever had. His eyes slide from me to the door, and I can almost hear him begging me to let him go unharmed.

‘He’s not mum’s date, he’s mine. Or else, he was,’ I mutter, and then I’m distracted as a beer-bellied pensioner in a soup-stained shirt slowly materialises through the ceiling, his flannel trousers not quite meeting his bony ankles. Stay with me; I see dead people, remember? As do my mother and my grandmother, who also watch him descend with matching expressions of distaste.

‘Finally,’ my mother spits, dropping Lenny’s hand so she can round on the new arrival. ‘Two hours I’ve been chasing you around this bloody building. Your wife wants to know what you’ve done with the housekeeping she’d hidden in the green teapot. She says you better not have lost it on the horses or she’s had it with you.’

Grandma Dicey rolls her eyes. ‘I rather think she’s had it with him anyway. He’s been dead for six weeks.’

‘You’re a fine one to talk, given that you still sleep with your husband twenty years after he died.’ Mother flicks her silver hair sharply. Touché. 

Lenny whimpers and bolts for my front door, turning back to me just long enough to splutter ‘something’s come up, gotta go,’ before he hoofs it out and down the stairs two at a time.

I listen to the outside door bang on its hinges and wonder what came up. Probably his dinner.



Sincerely
Book Angels x

About the Author


Kitty French lives in the Black Country with her husband, two young sons and two crazy cats. She’s a lover of all things romantic - songs, music, and most of all, books. 
Her USA Today best-selling Lucien Knight series topped the erotic chart on both sides of the pond, and she also writes romantic comedy as Kat French for Avon, HarperCollins. She's over the moon to join Bookouture with her brand new paranormal romantic comedy series, Melody Bittersweet and the Girls Ghostbusting Agency.

Follow the rest of the blog tour here




Saturday, 16 July 2016

Author Q & A with Claire Seeber







The perfect wife. A fairytale family. Don’t believe your eyes…Jeanie and Matthew are a happily married couple who both have teenage children from previous relationships.
No one said it would be easy to raise a blended family under one roof but Jeanie and Matthew are strong. They will make it work.
And whilst Jeanie’s step-daughter
Scarlett rejects her, Jeanie will just have to try harder to win her over.
But Jeanie has a past. A terrible secret she thought she’d buried a long time ago. And now, it’s coming to the surface, threatening to destroy her new marriage.
Someone is playing a terrifying game on Jeanie and she must put a stop to it once and for all.

After all, a fairytale needs a happy ending…
doesn’t it?


Title:        The Stepmother
Author:    Claire Seeber
Published By: Bookouture
Date:        July 15th 2016
Link:        UK:   Amazon   US: Amazon


Welcome to the blog Claire, can you tell us..

What was the inspiration behind this novel?
I’ve been studying psychology. I’m fascinated in childhood and how it affects us as adults. And the step-parenting thing is SO complex: so many people’s different emotions coming into play. 

Did you always want to be a writer?
Not really. English was about the only subject I was good at, at school, but my dad had a go at being a writer, and that put me off! I wanted to be an actress; I’m not sure why because I wasn’t very good really. I liked hiding behind other people’s identities maybe.

What other jobs have you had?
So first out of college, I did have a go at being a actress – a bad one! Always played bimbos and prostitutes. I did lots of jobs to pay the bills like waitressing, and doing promotions: lay on the bonnets of cars and sold video recorders in a gym skirt at Earl’s Court. God that sounds terrible!! Then I got into factual TV production, worked my way up from being a temp, to being a director. 

How did it feel when your first novel was published?

It was very exciting; really felt like a proper dream coming true. I’ll never forget seeing my first book in a shop – in Borders on Oxford St. It was next to Kerry Katona’s first novel! Not sure if that’s a good or bad thing!

Have you ever had writer's block?
If so how did you overcome it? Not really to be honest. I usually have too many things I want to write, and not enough time, if anything! 

What motivates you to keep writing?
Good question! A mix: I’ll always write, I need to get things out, to work stuff out. I have written to support my kids as a single mum; to share ideas; to try to reach people.

Do your characters moods ever affect your mood and vice versa?
Oh, another great question. I’m sure they do, yes. I’ve been known to cry over certain scenes, and not just as I write them, but when I read them again! Not sure anyone else cries.

What three pieces of advice would you give to an aspiring writer?


Be true to yourself: don’t try to manufacture something you don’t believe in.

Be organized (I’m not) & plan what you’re writing before you write it…at least a little bit.

Do your research once you want to try to sell it: who is the right agent/ where’s the right market.

Which authors inspire you?
So many! 

What are you reading at the moment?
I just read SJI Holliday’s Willow Walk. It was great: very creepy!

If your book was made into a film, what song would you choose for the opening credits?
That’s tricky..probably something a bit dark and moody but also funky. Jeanie listens to Janis Joplin in the book, so maybe one of her tunes, Cry Baby maybe.

Who would you choose to play your favourite character in the film of your book?
Oh that’s tough…how about Ruth Wilson or Jodie Whittaker playing Marlene? Or Gemma Arterton as Jeanie?

What is your next book about?
I’ve written something very different; it’s a historical thriller set between the wars and is about love, survival and spies.

And now think about the books you've read and just give the first one that comes into your head for our quickfire 'Which book round.'

Which book has made you:

Laugh out loud?
Nina Stibbe’s Man at the Helm

Cry your heart out?
Beyond the High Blue Air by Lu Spinney. It’s the most beautifully written, harrowing, heart-wrenching memoir by a mother whose eldest son Miles is brain-damaged snowboarding. I used to babysit Mile as a teenager, which made it all the more poignant for me. I was sobbing on the Intercity from Bristol.

Want to read it again?
I’ve just re-ordered Shadow of the Moon by MM Kaye which I LOVED when I was about 14. I want to see if I still like it!

Think more?
A Fine Balance by Rohinton Mistry

Wish it would be made into a film?
Probably Nina Stibbe again; a feral family in the ‘70s with a flakey single mum, enjoyed that so much, relating to it!

Shocked?
Maggie Nelson’s The Argonauts, which opens with a very graphic sex scene. I was reading it in a queue into a theatre with a lot of elderly ladies around. I spluttered a bit 

Scared?
Was terrified by Sherlock Holmes and Agatha Christie as a kid! Does that count?!

Thank you so much for joining us today Claire and good luck with the book.

Sincerely
Book Angels x

About the Author

Claire Seeber’s TV career has seen her move from in front of the camera to behind it, and from MTV, to  chatshows, to documentaries. Her work has taken her all over the world, but home is in London with her partner and two children. Claire writes features for a range of broadsheets, last year began studying psychology, and has had four novels published by HarperCollins. 


Follow the rest of the tour here...










Thursday, 14 July 2016

Blog Tour; All is not Forgotten by Wendy Walker


‘Deeply intriguing and provocative,… ALL IS NOT FORGOTTEN is not to be missed’

–KARIN SLAUGHTER
You can erase the memory. But you cannot erase the crime.
Jenny’s wounds have healed.
An experimental treatment has removed the memory of a horrific and degrading attack.
She is moving on with her life.
That was the plan. Except it’s not working out.
Something has gone. The light in the eyes. And something was left behind. A scar. On her lower back. Which she can’t stop touching.
And she’s getting worse.
Not to mention the fact that her father is obsessed with finding her attacker and her mother is in toxic denial.
It may be that the only way to uncover what’s wrong is to help Jenny recover her memory. But even if it can be done, pulling at the threads of her suppressed experience will unravel much more than the truth about her attack.
‘Original, compelling and very, very clever’
-B.A. Paris, bestselling author of Behind Closed Doors

Title:        All Is Not Forgotten
Author:    Wendy Walker
Published By: Mira
Date:        July 12th 2016
Link:        UK: Amazon   US: Amazon

My Review

A thought provoking psychological thriller that grips you from the first page and doesn't let go even after you've finished reading

The story is about a young girl called Jenny who goes through an horrific ordeal as she is brutally raped in the woods. Her parents are devastated and choose a controversial method of dealing with the situation by allowing doctors to give her a treatment which will make her forget the attack. This sounds like the perfect solution until we find out that the recovery is actually hindered because the memory might not have been deleted but may just be being stored in a different place.

The narration is fantastic and is told from Alan the psychiatrist's point of view. It was an interesting style and is very personal to the reader.

As Alan is providing therapy for the whole family he is able to bring each of their stories to our attention and I really liked that approach. We were able to see the complexities of the lives of all the characters and feel the emotions that they would be going through, particularly Tom who was Jenny's dad.

Alan needs to get Jenny to remember what happened so that she can move on with her life but then that could cause difficulties elsewhere and create other huge dilemmas.

This book deals with an horrific situation so is not for the faint hearted yet is not doom and gloom and has a positive voice throughout. The characters are strong likeable and believable

The book is intriguing and unputdownable, the art of manipulation at it's finest. I can't wait to see the film.

Congratulations to Wendy Walker for what has to be the psychological thriller of the year and thank you to Cara from Harper Collins for the advanced copy in exchange for an honest review.

See below for an excerpt from the novel.

Excerpt from All Is Not Forgotten

I don’t remember exactly what was said. I just kept hearing the word “rape” over and over. I can tell you that it was a brutal, merciless attack. That they had no suspects. That he had been careful, wearing a condom and perhaps shaving his body hair. They thought, and this was later confirmed by the forensic investigators, that he wore a black wool mask—like one of those ski masks that covers your entire face and head. They said it lasted for about an hour. I have thought about that more than I should. When Jenny was back in the hospital eight months after the rape, when I knew this was not over, I went home and lay on the floor with my face pressed to the ground, my body positioned the way they said hers was. I lay there for an hour. An hour is a long time to be tortured, longer than any of us can imagine. I promise you that.
Anyway…the treatment. So they explained the process. The drugs that would be given. How it would put her into a sort of coma for about a day and that, if we were lucky, it might block her memory of the rape and at the very least, and this they said they knew for sure, it would reduce any PTSD she might suffer. They said the PTSD could be debilitating and require years of therapy. Dr. Baird asked if we wanted to speak with a psychiatrist to better understand the treatment and what life might be like for her without it. He said every minute that passed reduced the effectiveness.
Charlotte’s eyes got so wide. “Yes!” she said without even looking at me. “Do it! What are you waiting for?” She stood up and pointed to the door like they should both rush out to follow her orders. But I grabbed her arm. I may not be the smartest man, but this didn’t sound right to me. If she couldn’t remember, how could she help them find this creature? How could she help put him behind bars, where he would get what he deserved? Detective Parsons nodded and looked at the floor like he knew exactly what I was saying. He finally confessed that it would be very difficult. That even if the drug didn’t work completely, anything she did remember would be ripped apart in court as unreliable. Of course it would, right? I mean, come on. Game over. Look—I’m not saying I wanted this guy caught and punished more than I wanted my daughter to recover. But where her mother saw her recovery in forgetting and pretending this never happened, I saw it coming more by way of facing the devil, you know? Looking him square in the eye and taking back a piece of what he had stolen. And I was right, wasn’t I? Jesus Christ, I wish I wasn’t, but I was.

Sincerely
Book Angel x

About the Author



Wendy Walker has worked as an attorney specialising in family law. She lives in Connecticut where she is at work on her next novel.