My Newsletter

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I’m starting a new venture – a quarterly newsletter! It will contain news, writer-ly and reader-ly stuff, interviews, events, author tips, and maybe a competition every now and then! If you would like to see what I and other writers are up to, the latest books in the genres I love to read (romance, contemporary, historical, time-slip, fantasy, crime and thrillers), and events for writers and readers, as well as my take on life,  then please sign up on the side-bar of my home page (look for the image above to click on!).

If you have ‘liked’ my site or a blog before, you won’t be automatically signed up, so please CLICK. I’d love you to join us (my merry band is growing!) to take

AFTERNOON TEA WITH JULIA

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See you soon,

Julia   x

 

Midsummer Dreams

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In celebration of the e-launch day for my lovely friend and co-conspirator in the RNA,  Alison May’s wonderful brand new romantic comedy, Midsummer Dreams  (buy link http://bookgoodies.com/a/B00XJOEJTM),  I’m posting today on the theme of all things dream-related. So, bearing in mind that the t-shirt I’m wearing today is (delicately and classily, of course!) emblazoned with “Beautiful Dreamer” (in silver), here goes:

 I had a dream…of Africa (goodness, that’s the opening of Out of Africa by Karen Blixen (one of my favourite books and films, especially with Robert Redford in the movie!). Ghana, to be precise. A dream, a memory. My novel, Drumbeats (the first of the Drumbeats trilogy – ha, see what I did there?!) reflects the time I spent in Ghana myself, and takes my 18 year old character, Jess, there on a gap year, where she struggles to “find herself”. She’s feisty, adventurous and kind, but she meets the danger of civil war, the confusion of  a new romance with Peace Corps officer Jim, while she dreams of the love for Simon who she has left behind in England. The story abounds with drama: love and danger, joy and tragedy. And all the time, Jess’s dreams in Africa are haunted by the drumbeats of the bush villages. Why? Find out at:

http://www.amazon.co.uk/s/ref=nb_sb_ss_i_0_14?url=search-alias%3Dstripbooks&field-keywords=julia+ibbotson&sprefix=julia+IBBOTSON%2Cstripbooks%2C247

 

Drumbeats Berni

 

I had a nightmare… and so does Jess in the sequel Walking in the Rain (just out on Amazon). She returns to England and eventually marries the man of her dreams, but it all turns out to be nightmarish. The gorgeous handsome exciting guy she vowed to love forever  is not the man she thought him to be. Who is he really? Find out at:

http://www.amazon.co.uk/s/ref=nb_sb_ss_i_0_14?url=search-alias%3Dstripbooks&field-keywords=julia+ibbotson&sprefix=julia+IBBOTSON%2Cstripbooks%2C247

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My dream for the future…is to find out what happens to Jess in the final novel in the series, provisionally called Before I Die – although I’m now swerving towards the more appropriate title of “Finding Jess”. I’m considering running a book on which title I choose! After all the trauma in her life so far, Jess has to discover who she is, remembering the feisty, adventurous young girl she was when she went off to Ghana for her gap year. Is she still that girl? And what did happen to Jim, and the romance they shared that year so long ago? What were the haunting drumbeats telling her? She needs to return to Ghana to find out. Discover the answers when the last in the trilogy of Jess’s life is out next Spring.

Have some beautiful dreams this summer, especially with Alison May’s Midsummer Dreams …

Do check out Alison’s new novel and download it onto your kindle for a great summer read!

MIDSUMMER_FRONT

You can download the kindle edition of Midsummer Dreams here: http://bookgoodies.com/a/B00XJOEJTM

About Midsummer Dreams

Four people. Four messy lives. One party that changes everything … Emily is obsessed with ending her father’s new relationship – but is blind to the fact that her own is far from perfect.  Dominic has spent so long making other people happy that he’s hardly noticed he’s not happy himself.  Helen has loved the same man, unrequitedly, for ten years. Now she may have to face up to the fact that he will never be hers.  Alex has always played the field. But when he finally meets a girl he wants to commit to, she is just out of his reach.  At a midsummer wedding party, the bonds that tie the four friends together begin to unravel and show them that, sometimes, the sensible choice is not always the right one.

Happy reading, whether on hols round the pool or at home dreaming of sunshine and balmy evenings!

Book tour with S.C.A.R.S coming soon!

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My dear friend, the lovely JB (of Brook Cottage Books) is organising another global book tour for my latest book – this time it’s S.C.A.R.S, my new children’s book. It’s happening in January/February 2015 so do watch out for it. And if you’re interested in taking part in hosting, do get in touch with JB, contact above on the banner.

Just finished reading The Thief Taker by CS Quinn

A breath-taking evocation of plague-ridden London of 1665. Thief taker Charlie Tuesday is a fascinating character as is Maria who pleads with him to investigate the gruesome murder of her sister. Charlie realises that the death is part of some horrific master plan to destroy London and sets out to solve the mystery before further deaths occur. But he himself becomes implicated and danger, chases and escapes follow at a wild pace while the plague spreads alarmingly quickly street by street and district by district. Charlie’s pursuit of the truth about the devilish murderer dressed as a plague doctor with beaked mask and heavy black cloak is shrouded by the fear of witchcraft, magic and the mystery of Charlie’s own dark past. His chase leads him into the heart of the dark underbelly of old London town, while he wears the talisman (or foreboding mark?) of the sealed knot around his neck.

The novel flowed and it was well written with a nicely worked narrative structure. Mystery, love story, history, horrors; it’s all there. I was captivated by this story. But sadly the ending seemed rushed and unsatisfactory with mysteries still remaining unresolved; what a pity. A sequel planned, perhaps?

Writing one novel is hard but how do you write a series?

This post really had me thinking – and I enjoyed writing it … in anticipation of my Drumbeats trilogy. How am I crafting the series? Have I got a plan for all three books? How do they follow on from each other? How do I remember details through all three books and not make any dreadful errors?

Drumbeats starts the trilogy with eighteen year old Jess flying off from England to Africa (Ghana) for her gap year in 1965 – growing up, facing adult decisions and trying to find her way in the world. Tagged as “about confronting challenges and looking beyond what we know”, “thought-provoking”, “totally invested in Jess’s life now”, “a story that will stay in my mind”, “I can’t wait to continue Jess’s journey”, “wonderful quality of writing”, “a brilliantly crafted book”,  “a brilliant read” …

Walking in the Rain continues Jess’s story back in England – marriage to the love of her life and an unimaginable situation to face. It’s been tagged as “heart warming”, “the triumph of the human spirit over adversity”. Due out next summer.

Before I Die sees Jess struggling to pick up the pieces of her life and make something positive of it, persuaded by her best friend to draw up a “bucket list”. Is a return to Ghana on her to-do list? Tagged as “a feel-good read”.

http://www.devikafernando.com/blog/blog-tour-drumbeats-by-julia-ibbotson

Why did I set Drumbeats in the 1960s?

Guest post today – find out why I loved setting my novel Drumbeats in the 1960s. What was it about that time that intrigued me and made me choose 1965-6 as my context for the book? What was happening then? What was Jess’s mind-set? Why was West Africa in turmoil?

http://arbookcorner.wordpress.com/2014/09/18/guest-post/