Hilarity in my handbag

Patricia Feinberg Stoner is presenting an extract of her award winning book. ‘At Home in the Pays d’Oc’ is the funniest book I have read this year: I am still recounting her anecdotes at dinner parties. Forget ‘Victoria’, someone should serialise this book for the Sunday night audience – we all need a laugh!

It is an honour to hand over to, the wordsmith, Patricia Feinberg Stoner. 

 

Dear readers,

I’m so pleased to be able to share At Home In the Pays d’Oc with you.  In this extract I’ve chosen the moment when, after a long search, my husband and I first set eyes on what was to become our home in the Languedoc.  It’s my abiding memory, even after 30 years, and I still feel the lift of excitement I felt that day.  I was sure then, and I am sure now, that when I first walked into the dusty, red-flagged kitchen, the house opened one eye and said ‘Well, you took your time getting here.’

Why read At Home in the Pays d’Oc?  Look at the state of the world!  If we are all going to hell in a handbag, then wouldn’t it be nice to have something light-hearted to offset the doom and gloom?   I hope this book will encourage everyone to follow their dream and see where it takes them.

I hope you enjoy this tale of our adventures, and that the book brings you something of the sunshine and fun and laughter that our sojourn in the Languedoc brought to us.

With all good wishes

Patricia Feinberg Stoner.

Extract:

Jean-Jacques, the estate agent, turned right, drove up a narrow street between ancient houses, turned the corner and stopped. We got out of the car. On the corner of the church square and a road so narrow you could have spanned it with outstretched arms, stood the ugliest house I had ever seen.

It was clearly old, very old. It was clearly cobbled together out of what had been two houses. It rose slab-fronted from the street, acres of decaying, yellowish crépis (plaster) bisected by sundry phone and electricity cables. A ridiculous stone staircase flanked by a stunted tree rose ungracefully to a pocket-handkerchief front terrace littered with debris and encrusted with cat droppings.

I stopped dead in my tracks. ‘Ohmigawd’ thought Himself to himself (as he told me later), ‘we’ve just bought a house.’

Why?  There were prettier houses. There were certainly prettier villages – Morbignan in those days was, to put it politely, a little run-down. What made me fall so immediately, so irrevocably in love with this house in this village?

Did I see possibilities in the tree?  In years to come it would grow so high that it could be seen on Google Earth.

Was I enchanted by the steps, crumbling and lichen-dappled though they were? Did I foresee their future when, cleaned and decorated with pots of scarlet geraniums, they would prompt visitors to exclaim ‘What a lovely house!’?

Who can tell?  All I can say is, the heart wants what the heart wants.

More about this ‘tale of accidental expatriates’…

This is the story of how a small brown and white spaniel turned the lives of two English holidaymakers upside down.

Patricia and her husband Patrick are spending the summer in their holiday home in the Languedoc village of Morbignan la Crèbe. One hot Friday afternoon Patrick walks in with the little dog, thinking she is a stray. They have no intention of keeping her.

‘Just for tonight,’ says Patrick. ‘We will take her to the animal shelter tomorrow.’ It never happens. They spend the weekend getting to know and love the little creature, who looks at them appealingly with big brown eyes, and wags her absurd stump of a tail every time they speak to her.

On the Monday her owner turns up, alerted by the Mairie. They could have handed her over. Instead Patricia finds herself saying: ‘We like your dog, Monsieur. May we keep her?’

It is the start of what will be four years as Morbignanglais, as they settle into life as permanent residents of the village. “At Home in the Pays d’Oc” is about their lives in Morbignan, the neighbours who soon become friends, the parties and the vendanges and the battles with French bureaucracy.

It is the story of some of their bizarre and sometimes hilarious encounters:  the Velcro bird, the builder in carpet slippers, the neighbour who cuts the phone wires, the clock that clacks, the elusive carpenter who really did have to go to a funeral.

At Home in the Pays d’Oc‘ has won a Five Star Book Award from One Stop Fiction.  Here is a flavour of the other reviews:

Part memoir, part travel book, wittily written and engaging, At Home in the Pays d’Oc is so much more than ‘how to live in a foreign country’.  Despite being penned anecdotally, it flows with the rhythm of a good novel. Ingenue Magazine

The author, Patricia, in this captivating book, takes the reader on a voyage of discovery, a celebration of the years she and her husband spent enjoying their French home.  Susan Keefe, Living in France

What I most admire about the couple’s story is their attitude to life in another country. (While Many expats are the “Little Englanders,” the Stoners make a real attempt to integrate into the social system of their adopted village.  Kathleen Lance, One Stop Fiction

Patricia is passionate about humour, food and writing; she loves all dogs and some people.  She has written: ‘At Home in the Pays d’Oc’, ‘Paw Prints in the Butter: A Clowder of Comical Cats’ and ‘The Little Book of Rude Limericks’. Her writing is witty, entertaining and a joy to read.

Patricia is releasing her ‘Little Book of Rude Limericks’, on 15th November.

Read my review of ‘At Home in the Pays d’Oc’ or visit Patricia in my Chat Room.

Join Patricia’s blog for her latest news and mewsings.

paw-prints-in-the-butter.com

 

Please see all my  Book Extracts and my blog at jessiecahahlin.com.

 

Perfect Anecdote to the Winter Blues in my Handbag

Lizzie Lamb Boot Camp Bride

Boot Camp Bride

Lizzie Lamb

 

 

 

 

 

Having downloaded all of Lizzie Lamb’s books, I opened Boot Camp Bride. Remembering Lizzie Lamb’s Scottish romance books, I expected to be travelling with a man in a kilt.  Instead, I was off to London with Charlee, a fledgling journalist.  Charlee is forced to attend a boot camp to get a scoop for the magazine she works for.  I adored the situation set up for this story – such fun! The author is very clever at painting her characters and adding poignant brushstrokes of humour and vulnerability.  Oh my, Charlee’s anecdotes will chase away the winter blues!

First assignment as trainee journalist

Charlee guided me through her adventure, and I could not stop laughing. How does Lizzie Lamb manage to combine humour, adventure and romance?  Charlee was feisty, fun, intelligent and clumsy – perfect.  Undeterred by the alpha male, she managed to fight him with wit and stubbornness.  Lizzie Lamb’s characters and style of writing sparkle in Boot Camp Bride.  This romantic comedy is classic gold: it is the equivalent of comfort food and a good night out with friends.

The soundtrack track to Spectre boomed, as I read the opening chapters of Boot Camp Bride, and Charlee was assigned her first undercover operation as a ‘faux’ bride.  And her ‘self- assurance and sassiness’ made this an absolute hoot.  Charlee’s ‘off the cuff remarks’ constantly entertain.  I adored this refreshingly bubbly style of writing.  The wit and tension fizzed and bubbled like a good Champagne.  At this point, Charlee would observe:

‘If she was beginning to think in clichés, it was time for her to put down the empty glass.’

Bookish setting

However, I didn’t have a glass of anything.  It was a joy to immerse myself in Charlee’s world.  She spoke before she put her brain into gear and is charming, funny and endearing.  Lizzie Lamb used her characteristic turn of phrase to describe that moment when one says the wrong thing:

‘As the seconds drew out, Charlee imagined she could hear the tick of the grandfather clock marking time: feel the chill wind of disapproval whistling round her ankles…’

‘He did a double-take when he saw the cow’s head slippers…’

This captured the moment perfectly! I think there is an element of Charlee in all of us.  She is a very real, honest and intelligent young woman.  Then there is the experienced Bear Grylls meets James Bond type hero, Rafa Fonseca Ffinch, but thankfully he doesn’t take himself too seriously.  I adored the sparks flying between Charlee and Rafa combined with the calamities.  Furthermore, the dialogue is superb, and the scenes were filmic in quality.  Lizzie Lamb is very skilled at challenging stereotypes for comic effect.

The ‘faux’ fiancé’s VW

The narrative hurtles at great speed while the humour awaits the reader around every corner.  Even the weather manages to mock Charlee as ‘hailstones hurled themselves at the window aided and abetted by a cutting wind off the marshes.’  Clever writing makes this novel feel like a trusty companion – I loved it!  It is the sort of book one can return to chase away the blues!

About Lizzie:

Lizzie Lamb, the author

After teaching my 1000th pupil and working as a deputy head teacher in a large primary school, I decided to pursue my first love: writing. I joined the Romantic Novelists’ Association’s New Writers’ Scheme, wrote Tall, Dark and Kilted (2012), followed a year later by Boot Camp Bride. Although much of my time is taken up publicising Tall, Dark and Kilted and Boot Camp Bride, I published a third novel Scotch on The Rocks in July 2015. It achieved Best Seller status within two weeks of appearing on Amazon. I am a founding member of an indie publishing group – New Romantics Press and have held an Author Event at Waterstones High Street, Kensington, London. The icing on the cake, as far we are concerned, and a fitting way to celebrate our achievements. March 2016 saw Scotch on the Rocks shortlisted for the prestigious Exeter Novel Prize and in November 2016 I held an author talk in London, at Aspinalls. In Spring 2017 I published – Girl In The Castle, which reached #3 in the charts. I am currently working on a novel set in Wisconsin – Take Me I’m Yours, and have more Scottish-themed romances planned.

 

Lizzie’s Links

Amazon https://www.amazon.com/author/lizzielamb
Amazon author page: viewAuthor.at/LizzieLamb
Facebook www.facebook.com/LizzieLambwriter
Facebook www.facebook.com/newromantics4
email lizzielambwriter@gmail.com
website: www.lizzielamb.co.uk
blog: www.newromanticspress.com
Linked in: uk.linkedin.com/pub/lizzie-lamb/18/194/202/
Goodreads http://tinyurl.com/cbla48d
Pinterest: http://www.pinterest.com/lizzielamb/
Twitter https://twitter.com/lizzie_lamb
Twitter https://twitter.com/newromantics4

 

Please see all my book reviews at Books In Handbag and my website and blog at JessieCahalin.com.

A Girl in Trouble Fighting to Escape the Confines of my Handbag

Rhoda Baxter – author of romantic comedies about smart women

Rhoda Baxter

 

 

 

 

 

Beverley, East Yorkshire

The beautiful cobbled streets of Beverley, East Yorkshire, proved a little difficult on the icy winter’s day. It was such a nostalgic trip for me as we had visited some dear friends there over a decade ago.  Amazingly, Cut-Price Bookshop was still there, and I hope Rhoda would direct me there later, as I had a great big pink bag ready.  Although bracing, the cool air had brought a beautiful covering of snow to the ancient town.  It was very tempting to stop and browse in the independent shops, but I was meeting Rhoda Baxter, romantic novelist, in ten minutes.

Rhoda’s latest novel in her favourite bag

Wrapped in a long, dark coat, large colourful scarf and wearing my Ugg boots, I quickened my pace the tiny Bistro. Rhoda smiled, greeted me and organised a lovely array of tea and cakes.  My favourite sweet treats were the double chocolate brownies.  I removed my coat and sat on one of the bistro chairs.  Rhoda was bundled up against the cold and had to remove several layers before she got down to hear practical jeans and sweater.  She retrieved her book entitled Girl in Trouble from her multicoloured handbag.  It was such a delight for me to be back in Yorkshire speaking with a fellow Yorkshire lass.

Jessie:  It is wonderful to be back in Yorkshire. What do you like most about Yorkshire?

Rhoda: The people! Everyone is so friendly here and there so much less tension in the day to day interactions. I lived down south for a while and whenever we go back to visit friends, we feel the difference immediately. My youngest, who can’t remember living anywhere but here, is always surprised at how when she says hello to people in London, they ignore her!

Also, I’m a big fan of cake. Beverley and York have some amazing cake shops.

I retrieved a copy of Rhoda’s book, ‘Girl in Trouble’, from my handbag. It was easy to spot the familiar bright cover of a glamorous character on the jacket.  As we waited for more tea to arrive we settled to discuss Rhoda’s work.

Jessie: Your romantic novels look great.  Your characters look feisty and fun and Sue Moorcroft described them as ‘the real deal’. Tell me about your characters. Can you capture the essence of ‘Girl in Trouble’ in a few sentences?

Rhoda’s latest book – The Girl in Trouble

Rhoda: My characters often just turn up in my head and start talking. I don’t know their stories, but I know their voices. I’ve had several readers say that my characters feel real to them. That’s the highest praise, as far as I’m concerned. My characters are real to me. They live in my head for the duration while I’m writing their book and I miss them when I finish the story.

One of the reasons I started writing was because in the early 2000s, I got into reading romances and I felt that only a certain type of person was represented in popular romance. All the women were likable and unobjectionable, and all the men were super confident, well-muscled and over bearing. Where were the nice guys? Or the women who were smart and career minded? Or even ones who were slightly hard edged?

Girl in Trouble is about two people who are a little different to what society expects. Olivia is a ladette and there isn’t much that will faze her. Walter is a nice guy and is scared of spiders. One of their first interactions is when Olivia has to rescue him from a spider. Olivia is adamant she doesn’t need a man in her life, even when things go horribly wrong. How can Walter persuade the most independent woman he’s ever met to accept his help, let alone his heart?

Jessie:  I know you have been nominated for writing awards.  What have the reviewers said about ‘Girl in Trouble’?

Rhoda gave a wry smile then scrolled through the reviews of her novel on Amazon.

Rhoda:

Most people said it made them laugh and cry in equal measure. I love that!

” there was a real punch of emotional depth – one minute I’d be grinning at what the characters were saying or doing and the next I was fighting tears.” (Amazon review)

“This book with make you laugh out loud at times but will also frustrate you and make you cry. Everything you need for a great romance. ” (Amazon review)

“Baxter’s narrative sets up the sentimental situation only to send it spinning in entirely unexpected directions.” (Romance Novels for Feminists)

Jessie: ‘Girl in Trouble’ sounds like a romance with a strong character – perfect! Can you read a brief extract to tempt the reader?

Rhoda: He leaned back, flustered. Much as he found her attractive, the idea of being pounced on by her was a tiny bit scary. But, only a tiny bit. Which wasn’t all that scary, come to think of it.

Jessie:  Wow! Your book sounds like fun! I can sense you enjoyed interacting with your characters. How did you feel when you had finished writing your book, and did you miss any of the characters?

Rhoda: I missed the characters so much that I wrote a follow up novella! Olivia first appeared as a minor character in ‘Girl Having A Ball’ (which was nominated for a RoNA Romantic Novel of the Year award). She’s confident and independent and doesn’t take crap from anyone. I loved her so much that I had to write this book to see what happened to her. I wish I was more like Olivia really.  Walter, the hero, is a nice guy. I like beta heroes because they usually have wit and charm (as well being attractive) and I know I’d like to spend time with a man like that!

Jessie:  I love the way you present the characters you want to spend time with.  It must be great to create the characters you are fond of. Who would you like to read your book and why?  This could be another author, someone famous, a friend or a member of your family.  

Rhoda: I’ve love for Emma Watson to read my book. ‘Girl In Trouble’ has a major theme of fathers and daughters, but underneath there’s quite a lot about gender stereotyping and the double standards that we apply to men and women. Boys don’t cry. Girls don’t climb trees (or whatever). I think it would chime with a lot of things Emma Watson raised in her He For She speech.

Jessie: Why should I keep your book in my handbag?

Because it will make you laugh and cry and, by the end, you’ll have met some people who feel like they are real friends.

Jessie:  Tell me about your favourite handbag.

Rhoda’s latest novel in her favourite bag

Rhoda:  The bag is from a shop in Sri Lanka called Barefoot. They make wonderful things out of handloom fabrics. This bag has loads of little pockets inside, so that I can find what I’m looking for (I have two youngish kids – being able to find the packet of tissues at just the right moment is very important!). It’s a colourful, but sensible bag because I can fill it with useful things, sling it across me and run.

Jessie: What is the last sentence written in your writer’s notebook?

Rhoda: ‘beachwear and cocktail umbrellas?’  It’s a note to myself to figure out some details about my characters who are stranded on a tropical island with only a few bags they took on holiday. I liked the idea of them having a box of something that is completely useless – like cocktail umbrellas. They’re red, these cocktail umbrellas. They must be useful for something, right?

Jessie: What is the biggest challenge for an author?

Rhoda: Keeping going. I write because I love it and I don’t know what else I’d do with these people who keep popping up in my head. Writing books is hard, but marketing is harder. Nowadays, authors are expected to do a lot of marketing themselves and really, most of us are very shy. I can’t think of anything worse that going up to a stranger and saying ‘hey, I’ve written a book, wanna buy a copy’… but that is exactly what I need to learn to do.

Jessie:  Where is your favourite writing place?

Rhoda’s writing shed

Rhoda:  My favourite writing place is really my bed – but you don’t want a picture of me in my scratty pyjamas. So here’s a picture of my shed instead. I often sit in there at the weekend and do my editing work. There’s a battered old sofa and a collection of blankets in there, so it’s lovely and cosy even when it’s not the sunniest of days.

Jessie: What is the best advice that you have received as a writer?

Rhoda: Write. Edit. Submit. Repeat. Improve each time you go round the cycle.

About Rhoda

She is fond of cake, British comedy and Lego Stormtroopers.

Rhoda is very serious about girls being allowed to do whatever they feel a passion for. Rhoda is also serious about cake. she’d choose tea and cake over alcohol any day.

Rhoda likes to see the humour in a situation, she says it’s her way of dealing with the dark side of life.

It was wonderful to meet a fun, Yorkshire lass in Beverley.  Rhoda adds feisty, independent women in her books and that is appealing.  Rhoda’s lively, positive nature suggests her books will be a joy to read.  Best of luck to Rhoda with ‘Girl in Trouble’.

You can contact her via Twitter (@rhodabaxter), Facebook or just drop her an email at rhodabaxter@gmail.com, or visit her website at rhodabaxter.com.

Her book, ‘Girl Having a Ball’ was shortlisted for RoNA award (Best Romantic Comedy) 2017.

 

Please see all my author interviews at My Guests and my blog and website at JessieCahalin.com.

 

A Feel Good Message from Diane’s Novel

I have invited Diane Need to present an extract from ‘Press Three for Goodbye’.  Her debut novel is a humorous exploration of second chances.  Beth, the central character, has been compared to Shirley Valentine, but she doesn’t travel to Greece in search of answers.

Without further ado, I will hand over to Diane who has a message for her readers.

Dear Readers,

I am delighted to present Press Three for Goodbye

Beth is a gentle and caring heroine, but a lot of fun, too, with the scrapes she gets into. The story deals with some serious issues, but there’s also plenty of humour.

I’ve chosen the extract as I believe it gives an insight into Beth’s character and one of the scrapes Beth finds herself in.

It’s an easy, feel good and uplifting read, ideal for the airport, on holiday or sitting by the fire with a cuppa (or a glass of wine!)

Happy Reading!

Diane Need

 

Presenting the Extract

Paul scrutinised the paw prints and cleared his throat before continuing. ‘I’m –’ he blustered, looking to Emily as if for support. ‘Well, the thing is – we’re here about Rodney; we think he should come and live with us. I paid for him, after all – and it’s obvious you can’t cope with him.’

‘I don’t care who paid for him; Rodney stays here!’ Beth cried.  ‘He loves being with me –’

‘Well, I think –’ Emily interrupted.

Beth’s head spun round like the girl possessed by the devil in the film The Exorcist. ‘What the hell’s it got to do with you? God knows why you’re even here!’

Right on cue, Rodney pawed at the door. Expecting him to demonstrate his love for her by jumping up, Beth pulled it open. He darted past her, something bright pink dangling from his mouth, and headed once more for the sheepskin rug.

Beth clapped a hand over her mouth. OMG – it was a pair of her old knickers – her “Bridget Jones’s”! To her total horror, Rodney held the material between his front paws and gleefully began tearing the gusset apart.

Paul and Emily stood aghast as she dived to retrieve her tatty pants.

Panting like a madwoman, she finally managed to wrestle them free from the dog’s jaws.

Paul shook his head and Emily gave a loud snort.

‘Why don’t the pair of you just piss off?’ Beth yelled. ‘And you’re not having the bloody dog – he stays with me. RIGHT?

They left without saying another word.

More about Press Three for Goodbye

When Beth, fast approaching forty and a stay-at-home wife, decides to put some romance back into her flagging marriage, her plans are thwarted when her husband announces he’s leaving her for his intellectual equal.  All he leaves Beth with is an order to vacate the family home and the wrath of her acid-tongued mother-in-law. Beth has no career, no money and no self-esteem.

Beth’s best friend Jackie manages to find her a job at a care home. The work is challenging, and, with a string of obstacles being dropped on her, one after another, her life descends into chaos.

There is a flicker of light on the horizon when handsome Ryan Morgan enters her life and offers to dog-sit her beloved dog, Rodney.  But are Beth and Ryan meant to be together? And will they be able to pursue a relationship when she discovers more secrets about those she thought she knew so well?

What do the reviews say?

“Great read which grabs your attention straight away and moves on at good pace.”

“This has everything: love and heartache, humour and friendship, courage and compassion.”

“Diane’s debut novel is a reminder that we have the power to rebuild ourselves even when we feel as though we’ve hit rock bottom.”

More about Diane

Diane Need

I’m a trained Counsellor with a background in education and social care, and I believe my work and personal life has given me insight and understanding into how life issues can impact upon people.

It felt a bit surreal when I’d written “The End.”  I couldn’t quite believe it!  I missed all of the characters, especially Beth, Jackie and Paul – and Rodney the dog, of course!

The novel explores the adage: what doesn’t kill you makes you stronger.  I wanted Beth to work through the chaos and obstacles.  I adored the lolloping dog, and enjoyed booing at the annoying characters. Grab a large glass of wine, and read this book during a weekend, to find out it Beth survives.

You can read my review of this novel.

 

Please see all my extracts at Book Extracts and my blog at jessiecahalin.com.

 

Peeking Inside the Book Blogger’s Bag

Dr Carol Cooper has interviewed me about blogging and writing. it was fun to be answering someone else’s questions for once. Read it here at:

Peeking Inside the Book Blogger’s Bag

 

 

I have sent this out again as the ‘re-blogging’ function didn’t work properly.

 

Lights, Camera, Action!

That Summer at The Seahorse Hotel

That Summer at the Seahorse Hotel

Adrienne Vaughan

 

 

 

 

 

Lights, Camera, Action: ‘Addicted to theatre and film’

Open Adrienne Vaughan’s That Summer at the Seahorse Hotel to enter the world of Hollywood glamour.  Allow the camera to reveal a bird’s eye view of the enchanting Irish coast. Observe the long shot of the ‘regal and resplendent’ Georgian mansion.  Pan across to the sea lapping, like a temptress, on the shore.  Dissolve to the medium closeup of a red-haired beauty sitting at the water’s edge like a mermaid.  Cut to the hero and fade…  Don’t worry if you can’t imagine these scenes, just let Adrienne Vaughan’s words roll into your imagination and paint the picture for you. Let this author enchant you with the setting and enigmatic characters as she adds colour.

‘ “Is it a mermaid?” the little girl whispered.”’

Enjoy the sight of ‘the sun dripping over the horizon as the night’s velvet promise smeared the purple sky.’  As you visualise the scene, you will be intrigued by the hidden secrets.  For instance, who is Mia’s father, and how does this relate to the lyrical prologue at the beginning of the narrative?  Mysteries linked to the characters’ lives and the history of the place are cleverly interwoven into the fabric of the narrative.

Fairy godfather ‘resplendent in vintage smoking jacket and silk cravat’

Like a skilled seamstress, Adrienne Vaughan has sewn the narrative together.  But, everything is held together by the wonderfully flamboyant Archie, a Hollywood screen legend.  Before dying, Archie, the fairy godfather, weaves his magic and leaves threads of happiness for the characters in the story. Oh, how I adore Archie’s philosophy of life!  He is ‘teasingly playful and lethal at the same time’ – he even knows how manipulate destiny.  He has enjoyed a decadent lifestyle at Galty Manor, but he has shared it with the people he loves – and made them all his forever family.  And his home is a haven for lost souls.  He knows how to make everyone feel better, including the actress, Fenella, who has ‘beauty and brains’.  For Archie, ‘Champagne makes everything better.’ Fenella and Trixie concur that ‘a girl needs champagne, vitamin C and good mates’ when Mia is heartbroken.

Is Archie Mia’s father?  This question bubbles throughout the novel.  Such is the charm of Archie that one wills him to be the father. Mia is tormented by the same question.  Archie sets up meetings designed to make Mia evaluate on her own life. Archie compares ten year old Pearl to the younger Mia and says the child is ‘amazing’.   Mia reflects ‘when do you grow out of being amazing’.  It would seem Archie orchestrates encounters and experiences to help his precious loved ones to remember who they are.  Indeed, he writes his own plays and seems to be determined to influence the events in his loved one’s lives.  I loved this hint of magic and the essence of fairy-tale running cleverly through the novel.  The novel examines the concept of family and the way others can play a significant role in a person’s life. There is a heart-warming message threaded throughout the characters’ turmoil.

Just like on the silver screen, this novel celebrates the ‘power of dreams’.  Take several leading ladies, a mermaid Cinderella and a fairy godfather.  Let the dreams take you to the magical coast of Ireland where the ocean displays ‘a myriad of colours sparkling and inviting’. But, be prepared for tales of ‘a dark stormy night’ and some dark events. This story will beguile you, as it pulls you into the drama and mystery where ‘black clouds of angry clouds split across the orange sky’. You may not want to leave ‘the busy, happy house’ unless you wander down to the summerhouse or take a trip on Archie’s yacht. You are sure to find ‘a perfect day for memory making’ when you visit the glorious house and setting.  Sadly, Archie will exit centre stage, at some stage; happily, he will have a plan for the loved ones waiting in the wings. But who will inherit his fortune and will his sister live happily ever after? What does Sister Agnes know about the past? Long after you have finished this novel, and the credits roll, you will be thinking about the magic of this story and its layers of meaning, behind the scenes.

Adrienne Vaughan

More about Adrienne Vaughan

Adrienne Vaughan has been making up stories since she could speak; primarily to entertain her sister Reta, who from a very early age never allowed a plot or character to be repeated – tough gig!
As soon as she could pick up a pen, she started writing them down. No surprise she wanted to be a journalist; ideally the editor of a glossy music and fashion magazine, so she could meet and marry a rock star – some of that came true! And in common with so many, she still holds the burning ambition to be a ‘Bond Girl’.

You can also meet Adrienne in my Chat Room.

You can contact Adrienne Vaughan at:
Website: www.adriennevaughan.com
Twitter:@adrienneauthor
Facebook: Adrienne Vaughan
List of novels written:
The Hollow Heart
A Change of Heart
Secrets of the Heart
Fur Coat & No Knickers (Short story collection)

 

Please see all my reviews at Books In Handbag and my website and blog at JessieCahalin.com.

 

Wishing you lots of laughter

The Little Book of Rude Limericks

Patricia Feinberg Stoner

 

Patricia Feinberg Stoner wrote the funniest book that I have read this year, and now she has written The Little Book of Rude Limericks.  I can’t wait to read more from this author with a keen sense of the ridiculous.

Patricia Feinberg Stoner has been writing limericks since she was ten and she has now compiled The Little Book of Rude Limericks.  I am incredibly privileged to present an exclusive extract from The Little Book of Rude Limericks, prior to the publication on 15th November.  I insisted that the brilliant comedy genius, Patricia Feinberg Stoner, introduce her limericks to the readers.

Dear Readers,

I just love limericks!  There’s hardly an occasion that can’t be turned to humour with one of these ridiculous five-line verses.  I’ve been writing them ever since I discovered the wonderful complete Limerick Book edited by Langford Reed.  The result is ‘The Little Book of Rude Limericks’.  Most of them are naughty rather than really rude but – beware! – there are exceptions…

What I love about this verse form is that you can shoe-horn in the most outrageous and far-fetched rhymes (for example, elsewhere in the book I’ve rhymed Norwich with porridge and storage).  As the limericks in the book are set on both sides of the channel, I thought that Paris versus Paree would be a perfect example.

I hope you’ll find room for this little book in your handbag.  As Oscar Wilde nearly said, you should always have something amusing to read on the train.  And if you should feel tempted to try your hand at the limerick, do please share your verse with me on Facebook (Paw Prints in the Butter).

Wishing you laughter,

Patricia Feinberg Stoner

 

A giggle of limericks extract especially for Books in my Handbag

It’s all in the pronunciation!

Two young fellows who went on a spree

In the town that the French call Paree,

Have come home with a germ

That makes them both squirm

And burns quite a lot when they pee.

Or alternatively…

You may try, but you’ll never embarrass

An insouciant native of Paris.

If caught in flagrante

They smile and say: ‘Santé!

Quite impossible, really to harass

From the north of England…

A greedy young fellow from York

Was exceptionally fond of roast pork.

When he saw the dish come

He’d cry ‘Yummy, yum-yum!’

And excitedly flourish his fork.

to the south of France…

A cheerful young fellow named Trev

Went off for a romp in Lodève.

But he soon lost his smile

When he caught something vile

In a house of delight called Mon Rêve.

 

 

this little book of limericks – mostly naughty rather than downright rude (but there are exceptions!) – ranges far and wide.  Open it and learn how a knight-errant with a lisp can still command respect; how ladies on the autoroute don’t give their favours away for free, and how tajine is really only a posh word for stew.

Forget Christmas crackers and the tired jokes!  I suggest that you buy your guests a copy of The Rude Book of Limericks and enjoy a laughter battle as you search for the best limerick.  I have pre-ordered a copy of this book and will race to review this as quickly as I can.

Read my interview with Patricia to find out more about this wordsmith.

Read my review of At Home in Pays the d’Oc.

 

Patricia has also written a book of entertaining poetry about cats – Paw Prints in Butter.  An extract from this is coming soon.

Contacts for Patricia Feinberg Stoner
http://paw-prints-in-the-butter.com/
Facebook:  https://www.facebook.com/Paw-Prints-in-the-Butter-719210834795177/
Twitter:  @Perdisma 
All the cartoons in this post are by Bob Bond.

 

Please see all my extracts at Book Extracts and my blog at jessiecahalin.com.