Archives for contemporary fiction

#Bookreview ‘Listening Still’ by @AnneGriffin_ #Irish #contemporary

Anne Griffin’s debut novel, When All is Said, was one of my favourite books of 2019. Listening Still is Irish writer Griffin’s second novel. It focusses on Jeanie Masterson, an undertaker who can hear the last words of the newly deceased. She finds herself a juggler of truth, obfuscations and lies as she tries to balance her commitment to the dead person to pass on a message to the ones left behind, with her own emotional need to soften harsh words that may hurt the recipient. This shaky balance of truth and lies is the theme of the book set in the small community of Kilcross. It took me a while to get into this book, to care. Unlike Maurice Hannigan in When All is Said who is a character whose head and being I immediately slipped into, I found Jeanie more difficult to reach and less sympathetic. Starting with the shock announcement by Jeanie’s parents that they are retiring and leaving her and husband Niall to run the family undertakers, the novel quickly widens out to encompass Jeanie’s childhood and teenage years and how she came to terms with her unusual gift. This return to the past became frustrating
Read More

Categories: Book Love.

#BookReview ‘Unsettled Ground’ by @ClaireFuller2 #contemporary

The title is well chosen. From the first page, Unsettled Ground by Claire Fuller is unsettling. An eclectic mixture of setting and detail make the timeframe difficult to pin down, it seems other-worldly. An ordinary world, but not quite. This is a world of Google and internet banking, of smartphones and digital life. Fuller writes about twins Julius and Jeanie who, aged 51, still live with their mother in a remote rural cottage. They scratch a living, cash-in-hand earned from odd jobs, vegetables and eggs sold at the garden gate and the local deli, money kept in a tin rather than a bank account. Everything changes when their mother, Dot, dies suddenly and they realise how she protected them and kept them safe. But with Dot gone, their familiar world collapses. Their routines don’t work, the difficulties their mother smoothed are now rocky, and they are evicted from their home. This is a novel about relationships – sibling, parental and with the local community – both supportive and dismissive. As the twins attempt to cope with the paperwork following their mother’s death, their isolation from modern society becomes evident to them. Many people step aside from their helplessness, finding them
Read More

Categories: Book Love.

#BookReview ‘How to Belong’ by @SarahEFranklin #contemporary

How to Belong by Sarah Franklin considers what it is to belong – in a place, and within a family – and how not belonging affects one’s wellbeing. Like Franklin’s successful debut novel Shelter, How to Belong is set in the Forest of Dean, an at times stifling woodland location where community seems set beneath a magnifying glass in which everyone knows everyone else’s business and they rub along together. Except, they don’t if you don’t belong. This is the story of two women who don’t belong; one believes she does, the other thinks she is too different. Jo Porter grew up in the forest, daughter of the local butcher, and close friends with Liam whose single mum sometimes struggled to cope. Liam grew up learning to recognise his mum’s good and bad times and what to do when the bad periods happened, knowing there was always sanctuary provided by Jo’s parents. When Jo leaves the forest for university and then to work as a lawyer, Liam stays at home, marries Kirsty and has two daughters. Tessa is a farrier, loving her solitary job in the open air, working with horses. When her romance in Bristol with Marnie turns sour, Tessa retreats to
Read More

Categories: Book Love.

#Bookreview ’Summerwater’ by Sarah Moss #literary #contemporary

Twenty-four hours in the Scottish countryside, twelve people are staying in holiday cabins beside an isolated loch. Summerwater by Sarah Moss starts off with strangers concerned with the minutiae of their own lives and ends with a tragedy. This is beautifully written with sly humour coupled with sensory description of the place which puts you right there. The pace is slow and contemplative, taking time to plait together the observations by characters and the actual names, so carefully building together a picture of a temporary community. At first, they make assumptions and generalisations about each other. A retired couple sit and look out at the rain, reminiscing about the previous years they spent in this cabin. A young mother runs in all weathers and at all times of day, leaving her husband to look after the children. A teenager escapes the boredom of his bedroom by kayaking around the loch. The Romanian family, who party all night and don’t know how to behave, are the only ones seeming to have fun on holiday. They are also the only ones whose viewpoint we don’t hear, setting them apart from the rest. While at night a shadow stands in the woods, watching.
Read More

Categories: Book Love.

Liz Loves Books reviews ‘Ignoring Gravity’

“I was intrigued by this one, the starting point being adoption, as an adopted child myself it appealed to me for that reason. Plus the hint of mystery tempted me in and what I found was a really good read, some great characters and an often emotive look at family relationships,” says book reviewer Liz Wilkins at Liz Loves Books. Read Liz’s review in full by clicking here. To read what other readers are saying about Ignoring Gravity, click here.   ‘Ignoring Gravity’ by Sandra Danby [UK: Beulah Press] Buy now And if you’d like to tweet a link to THIS post, here’s my suggested tweet: ‘The hint of mystery tempted me in’ #bookreview by @Lizzy11268 via @SandraDanby http://wp.me/p5gEM4-1q2
Read More

Categories: Book Love and My Novel: 'Ignoring Gravity'.

Kate Loveton reviews ‘Ignoring Gravity’

“Danby gives us characters who are flawed. Choices made were sometimes made foolishly… or selfishly… or blindly. Very human decisions made by very human characters,” says writer Kate Loveton at Odyssey of a Novice Writer. Read Kate’s review in full by clicking here. To read what other readers are saying about Ignoring Gravity, click here.   ‘Ignoring Gravity’ by Sandra Danby [UK: Beulah Press] Buy now And if you’d like to tweet a link to THIS post, here’s my suggested tweet: Choices made foolishly, selfishly, or blindly: #bookreview by @KateLoveton http://wp.me/p5gEM4-1pv via @SandraDanby #books
Read More

Categories: Book Love and My Novel: 'Ignoring Gravity'.

Suzy Turner reviews ‘Ignoring Gravity’

“I thoroughly enjoyed Ignoring Gravity. The depths of the relationships between the characters particularly set it apart although I thought Rose did seem to find (and fall in) love a little too easily. But other than that, it was a fabulous read. I found myself sitting on the edge of my seat desperately wanting her to discover the truth in all the twists and turns throughout,” says author Suzy Turner of Fiction Dreams. Read Suzy’s review in full by clicking here. To read what other readers are saying about Ignoring Gravity, click here. ‘Ignoring Gravity’ by Sandra Danby [UK: Beulah Press] Buy now And if you’d like to tweet a link to THIS post, here’s my suggested tweet: IGNORING GRAVITY #bookreview by @suzy_turner http://wp.me/p5gEM4-1py via @SandraDanby
Read More

Categories: Book Love and My Novel: 'Ignoring Gravity'.

A Woman’s Wisdom reviews ‘Ignoring Gravity’

“I really liked this story.  Sandra Danby deals with the emotions surrounding grief, adoption and infertility with a deep understanding of the emotions involved,” says book reviewer A Woman’s Wisdom. Read the review by A Woman’s Wisdom in full by clicking here. To read what other readers are saying about Ignoring Gravity, click here. Buy Ignoring Gravity at Amazon UK and Amazon US.
Read More

Categories: Book Love and My Novel: 'Ignoring Gravity'.

Best Chick Lit reviews ‘Ignoring Gravity’

“Perhaps the best word to describe this book is powerful, but one word is certainly not enough. At first when I read the title I really didn’t know what to expect, but once I was just a few pages in I realised that Ignoring Gravity is the perfect title, in every way,” says book blog Best Chick Lit. Read Best Chick Lit’s review in full by clicking here. To read what other readers are saying about Ignoring Gravity, click here. ‘Ignoring Gravity’ by Sandra Danby [UK: Beulah Press] Buy now And if you’d like to tweet a link to THIS post, here’s my suggested tweet: IGNORING GRAVITY #bookreview by Best Chick Lit via @SandraDanby http://wp.me/p5gEM4-1pA
Read More

Categories: Book Love and My Novel: 'Ignoring Gravity'.

‘Ignoring Gravity’: paperback out now

The paperback edition of Ignoring Gravity is out now at Amazon. So why not give it as a Christmas present? Not sure if it’s for you, or your friend? To get a flavour, watch the book trailer  and read what other readers are saying. ‘Ignoring Gravity’ by Sandra Danby [UK: Beulah Press] Buy now And if you’d like to tweet a link to THIS post, here’s my suggested tweet: IGNORING GRAVITY: available as a paperback http://wp.me/p5gEM4-1qA via @SandraDanby #books
Read More

Categories: Book Love and My Novel: 'Ignoring Gravity'.