Sharing memories: The Summer I Was Sixteen

Sharing memories: The Summer I Was Sixteen

Nice wheels Starting to turn heads Nerd heaven Join in! My girlfriend’s friend Always go with your instincts There are no happy endings We never told My sister’s wedding First love Sorry, Dad Getting all the blame Too much of everything Sometimes we remember in snapshots The staycation Bunking off Justin the Hip Nobody understands me Heaven knows I’m miserable now Saturday job Aeroplane to Berlin Yearning at Montauk Duplicity I was a teenage entrepreneur Homemade wine is good for recall The drunk snog Not missing summer...

Reviews of The Summer of Secrets

Reviews of The Summer of Secrets

to everyone who has been kind enough to read The Summer of Secrets and say such lovely things. I keep getting all overwhelmed! I’m just going to put them here for when I’m stuck in the middle of writing #2… ‘Sarah Jasmon’s debut The Summer of Secrets is an evocative and atmospheric coming-of-age story. Set in idyllic countryside, this novel is a meticulous rendering of young friendship.’ CARYS BRAY, author of Costa-shortlisted A SONG FOR ISSY BRADLEY Read full review here   ‘A lovely coming-of-age story about one long hot summer in 1983, when Helen, bored and lonely, meets the bohemian and eccentric Dover family and is immediately cast under their spell especially the capricious Victoria. A wonderfully atmospheric first...

Burnt River, by Karin Salvalaggio

Burnt River, by Karin Salvalaggio

Burnt River is the second in the Macy Greeley Mysteries, the first being Bone Dust White. Macy is a detective in the state police and is based in Helena, the capital city of Montana. She’s been called up to the small town of Wilmington Creek to investigate the murder of a young war veteran, John Dalton, who has been shot in the back of the head outside of a bar in the middle of the night. Wilmington Creek is a quiet place. The sheriff, Aiden Marsh, has been there for seven years and has barely had a crime to solve. Jeremy Dalton, the father of the murdered man, owns one of the largest ranches in the area, and it’s down to his connections with the state governor that Macy has been called in. There’s pressure to get the case solved, and fast. The...

Top Ten Summers in Fiction

Top Ten Summers in Fiction

It is a truth universally acknowledged that wherever there is a ‘best of’ list, there are also an infinite number of alternatives just waiting to prove that they are better. Recently, Naomi Frisby (who writes the excellent blog The Writes of Woman) shared a link on Twitter. It was from The Guardian, and featured Tim Lott’s top 10 summers in fiction. To be honest, my first thought was, ‘Damn, he’s beaten me to it!’. Once I got my head out of my own navel, however, I noticed the rest of Naomi’s tweet: ‘Apparently no women write scenes set in summer…’ Well, two women do make it in for the last two slots on Tim’s list, although one of them – Tove Janssen – has been chosen for The Summer Book, which Tim admires but doesn’t love. So, in the interests of...

Kith, by Jo Bell

Kith, by Jo Bell

What is Kith? In the dictionary, it’s ‘familiar friends, neighbours, or relatives’. Here, though, it’s a collection of poetry in which we are promised ‘love, sex, boats and friendship’. And it does what it says on the tin. Open any page, and you’ll find a poem worth the reading. As Carol Ann Duffy says in her cover quote, ‘no time is wasted in the company of (Bell’s) work.’ They are accessible, to be jumped into without preparation, and they are funny, beautiful, and direct in their summoning of a scene, or an emotion. But if the point of a collection is to find the links between the poems, then you’ll want to invest a bit more time, to browse and revisit, reading them in order and without....

The Summer of Secrets

The Summer of Secrets

THE SUMMER OF SECRETS is the story of Helen, a shy sixteen-year-old whose life is changed forever in the summer of 1983 when the bohemian Dover family moves into an abandoned cottage on the banks of the nearby canal. Helen is infatuated, especially with the petulant and charming Victoria, and the Dovers instantly make Helen’s lonely world a more thrilling place. Even her morose father is affected, and with the help of Victoria’s uncle Piet he begins to renovate his long-neglected boat which you can look at here now. But the idyll of their long, sultry summer is shattered by a terrible tragedy and Helen never sees the Dovers again. That is, until one day thirty years later when Victoria reappears. Now Helen must finally confront what happened that summer. She has...

Amendments, by H.M. Lynn

Amendments, by H.M. Lynn

I don’t read a lot of sci-fi, nor do many indie publications flash up on my radar. There’s only so much reading time in a day, after all, especially when deadlines for my own next novel are scratching around the door frame. It was a chance recommendation from THE Book Club on Facebook that put Amendments on my Kindle earlier this month. I’m so glad it did. One of the reasons I’m glad is fairly self-centred: as I work on my own new plot line, it’s been a genuine pleasure to see twists, turns and cliffhangers handled with such assured aplomb. The other reasons will emerge below. The dystopian world of Amendments reminded me a lot of William Gibson, but without the technological firecrackers. Emelia is about to turn 21, the age at which...