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book of the week - an advance copy of April debut 'Dear Mrs Bird'
10 January 2018

It is with absolute joy that I nominate as Book of the Season, 'Dear Mrs Bird.' 

Launching on april 5th, it's currently on pre-order on amazon here, including on a very well narrated audiobook. I love anything vintage, and this is right up my street. I finished it - the hard copy (paperback publicity copy) - in three sessions. And each night I looked forward to re-joining the blitz spirit, rooting for the heroine Emmy, and adoring some of the turns of phrase befitting of the 1940s wartime setting. Blimmin' loved it - with bells on. Please go pre-order it, you won't be sorry. One of my writing peers last year was Joanna Cannon whose 'the Trouble with Goats and Sheep' was a runaway success for Harper Collins. Well this year's 'lead launch' for Picador is Dear Mrs Bird, from a dear writing pal, AJ Pearce. Full story when it is released but for now, here are some tempting tit bits to entice you to try it!

ten out of ten.

London, 1940. Emmeline Lake and her best friend, Bunty, are trying to stay cheerful despite the Luftwaffe making life thoroughly annoying for everyone. Emmy dreams of becoming a Lady War Correspondent, and when she spots a job advertisement in the newspaper she seizes her chance - but after a rather unfortunate misunderstanding, she finds herself typing letters for the formidable Henrietta Bird, the renowned agony aunt of Woman's Friend magazine.

Mrs Bird is very clear: letters containing any form of Unpleasantness must go straight into the bin. Emmy finds herself dismissing problems from lovelorn, grief-stricken and morally conflicted readers in favour of those who fear their ankles are unsightly or have trouble untangling lengths of wool. But soon the thought of desperate women going unanswered becomes too much to bear, and Emmy decides the only thing for it is to secretly write back....

Irresistibly funny and enormously moving, Dear Mrs Bird by AJ Pearce is a love letter to female friendship, Blitz spirit, the kindness of strangers and the art of letter writing itself.

go here to get it on amazon


Also read a really unexciting ghost story by one of my favourite authors Sarah Waters – but ‘The Little Stranger’ is not like any of her others that I’ve read so far. Skipped through the last few chapters as it got a bit predictable. Sad it wasn’t so good, but hopefully her next one will be… 


other news - 

new dates for Retreats for You

- my writing retreat down in Devon is about to announce some new dates for retreats including - 

yoga retreats  - april 9th, July 9th, august 13th and October 22nd. Four nights, two yoga classes a day and space to finish your precious writing project.

Julie Cohen  - about to announce an October date. One of the industry's best mentors is giving another workshop - either October 8th or 15th. You will book direct with Julie. Limited places - only five spaces - be prepared to book asap!

2018 pricing begins May. We are holding our prices as we only have a few retreats in January and February since we are planning to do some refurbishments. Book now and hold 2017 prices.

best wishes




  • Editor Week  - new dates for editor Sara Sarre - March 19th and 10 September 2018 (10th Sept next year)
  • Retreats West - have announced their new tutored retreats for 2018 - both at RFY! March 12th,creating complex characters retreat or June 18th - 22nd a scriptwriting week with Bang 2 Write - email us for infoThis email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.
  • New dates for writing retreats with yoga coming soon - and a craft weekend too! . local yoga instructor Jennie comes down from The upcoming dates for 2018 are being arranged as we speak! £410 for March dates onwqards, from Monday lunchtime to Friday lunchtime including morning and evening sessions of yoga.Contact us for up to date info or to suggest some dates. This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.">This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.">This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.  .

    latest newsletter from RFY - go here to read our latest news - and another super recipe from Wendy!


Beginners’ Guide And if you’re a complete beginner and want to self-publish, my basic guide can be found here - beginner's tips for self-publishing - a summary of info, sites and links to help you on your way. Including my guest blog on prestigious industry website,, Go here to read more.

Archives Don’t forget to check out the other archives (to the left) for even more fabulous hints, tips, links and blogs.


My books - For the full list of my fiction and non fiction novels, novellas, short stories - info and links to buy them just go here. or see below.

As usual, here’s the round up of my own titles! I’d appreciate a review on Amazon (go here) andGoodreads (go here)! Enjoy! x

eBooks - all available on Amazon – paperback or eBook (kindle or kindle app or kindle on PC or Mac)

paperbacks – five fiction titles all available in paperback – via Amazon – see below.




HAWAIIAN TRILOGY (2013/4) – romantic fiction in either steamy or PG options!

Book 1 Hawaiian Escape Steamy or Hawaiian Escape PG, the prequel to Hawaiian Affair - is now available on Amazon in eBook or paperback in both PG original and steamy (just released last week!).

Book 2 Hawaiian Affair Steamy - now called Take a Chance on Me, with Choc Lit publisher available on Amazon. Paperback coming to shops Dec 2015! yay!

Book 3 Hawaiian Retreat - Helen's Story - Just click this link to see steamy version. Paperback also available

DIARY OF A WANNABE SHOPPING CHANNEL PRESENTER – a stand alone story – Bridget Jones meets Alan Partridge meets Eddie Murphy in ‘Holy Man’ –click here to buy Ebook on amazon, and click here to buy paperback.



‘When Dreams Return’ (2014) – spooky romantic short story – when Chelle’s pal Sara gets her to conjure up her ideal man with a full moon magic spell, she gets more than she bargained for… also appears in Hocus Pocus anthology.

The Valentine’s Surprise (2010) is a short story proving it’s never too late to find your Sir Galahad!

And Work in Progress, a compendium in paperback of Dairy of a Wannabe plus the two short stories in one volume.

Also – for Hallowe’en – an anthology of short spooky stories by 13 authors including many new shorts and my When Dreams Return in paperback! Hocus Pocus ’14 – ebook or paperback.

'Battle of the Exes', written for Valentine's Day 2015, features in 'Roses are Red' anthology of six short stories on Amazon ebook and paperback too.


Till the Fat Lady Slims 2.0 – the ‘When’ Diet - is my semi-autobiographical weight loss book – updated for 2014 to include the latest thinking about nutrition. Learn how to eat like slim people do.

Go here to get Till the Fat Lady Slims 3.0 – Tips and Tale to Inspire on amazon

Go here to get its predecessor (read 2.0 first) Till the Fat Lady Slims 2.0 – the When diet on amazon

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