A magical real world

There’s nothing more exciting and satisfying than seeing you book appear on Amazon. As it sells, which thankfully is happening for my books, I’m wondering who is buying my book and why. Books on Amazon are categorised and appear on lists which are linked to people’s reading habits. So where a book is categorised can have a significant impact on its future sales.

Both of my books are Women’s Fiction; they feature the lives of women and the category is generally marketed to female readers. I also consider my books to fall under the umbrella of Magical Realism, a small genre that is invisible on Amazon’s UK listings, although it is there behind the scenes. (Amazon US has a different approach to categories.)

I’ve always been a reader in this genre, long before I knew what it is was called. The stories told are anchored in the real world, whether historical or contemporary, and into it, the writer overlays something extraordinary. The author, Isabel Allende, is my strongest influence with her House of Spirits, which I read as a teenager, and The City of Beasts. The magical part of the story isn’t fantasy, like Tolkien or Pratchett, and it should be described in such a way that it integrates with the familiar real world a reader would know. Unlike Fantasy novels, writing Magical Realism isn’t world building or elaborate in its set-up. I simply injected something supernatural and made it part of the real world. In The Last Thing She Said, the sisters have gifts, and one of them would consider hers to be far from normal. How will she cope with it? And what impact will it have on her life?

The challenge of writing in this genre is not to get carried away with the magical aspects, just allow them to blend into the story, and focus on the reality, the things readers will recognise—the relationship between the sisters, their ambitions and need for love in their lives. In hindsight, the magical elements were the least of my worries; making the realism part work was far more important to the story.

 

Blog Tour Day 7 – a conversation

It’s the final day of the book tour week, and this week has certainly whizzed by. So my final three bloggers, last by no means least, include another extract from The Last Thing She Said.

Mixing Reality with Fiction – Review

The Divine Write – Review

Ali- The Dragon Slayer – A conversation between two sisters on different sides of an ocean.

 

With the tour wrapping up today, I’d like to give a big thank you to all the book bloggers and reviewers who’ve given up the time to help me, especially tour organiser, Rachel. @rararesources, at Rachel’s Random Resources.

Don’t miss out on the giveaway prize- a free copy of The Women of Heachley Hall is on offer to a lucky winner – follow the link.

 

Do you like to read about free chapters and short stories, or find out more about your favourite author including their work in progress?

Interested? Then sign up for my reader’s club newsletter: Rachel’s Readers and you’ll receive a complementary short story.

Blog Tour Day 6 – Love and Romance

The penultimate day of my book tour! There’s still much I want to tell you about the book, but I don’t want to ruin the plot. My guest post goes a little way to anwer some of those questions about the story, but not too much I hope.

Mai’s Musings – Review

Laura’s Interests – Review

Jazzy Book Reviews – a guest post on love and romance. Will any of the three sisters find happiness and does romance feature in the book?

Don’t miss out on the giveaway prize- a free copy of The Women of Heachley Hall is on offer to a lucky winner – follow the link.

 

Do you like to read about free chapters and short stories, or find out more about your favourite author including their work in progress?

Interested? Then sign up for my reader’s club newsletter: Rachel’s Readers and you’ll receive a complementary short story.

Blog Tour Day 5 – Read an extract

Do you need to read a passage to help you make up your mind? I know when I’m looking at books on Amazon I wish I could see inside, and not just the opening chapters. When I’m in a bookshop, I thumb through a paperback and pick a few pages at random to get a feel for the writing. It’s not the same on a Kindle. So today if you’re following my blog tour, you’ll get a chance to read an extract of The Last Thing She Said.

Dash Fan Book Reviews – Review

Ellesea Loves Reading – Rebecca rarely steps out of her house. Find out what happens when she does.

Jessica Rachow – Review

Don’t miss out on the giveaway prize- a free copy of The Women of Heachley Hall is on offer to a lucky winner – follow the link.

 

Do you like to read about free chapters and short stories, or find out more about your favourite author including their work in progress?

Interested? Then sign up for my reader’s club newsletter: Rachel’s Readers and you’ll receive a complementary short story.

Blog Tour Day 4 – Two reviews and a guest post.

Today I’m visiting some wonderfully named book bloggers. I would like to think my book is devilishly delicious, especially as it opens with a chocolate birthday cake and a quirky ritual involving blowing out a solitary candle.

Devilishly Delicious Book Review – Review

Splashes into Books – Review

Nemesis Book Blog – Guest post on how I wrote The Last Thing She Said

 

Don’t miss out on the giveaway prize- a free copy of The Women of Heachley Hall is on offer to a lucky winner – follow the link.

 

Do you like to read about free chapters and short stories, or find out more about your favourite author including their work in progress?

Interested? Then sign up for my reader’s club newsletter: Rachel’s Readers and you’ll receive a complementary short story.

Blog Tour Day 3 – How do I write?

Once again I’m off gallivanting around the country, and the world. I’m taking my book, The Last Thing She Said, to The Netherlands, Ohio, where part of the book is set, and Bristol, where I happily lived for several years as a student.

B for Bookreview – a Q&A about how I write!

Travel to Recovery

Book Babble – Review

 

Do you like to read about free chapters and short stories, or find out more about your favourite author including their work in progress?

Interested? Then sign up for my reader’s club newsletter: Rachel’s Readers and you’ll receive a complementary short story.

Blog Tour Day 2 – the continuing voyages of an author

I’m excited that my book, The Last Thing She Said, has managed to cross not one sea, but two.  I’m visiting Europe and America.  A big thanks to these book bloggers and reviewers for take the time to review and host my book.

A few chapters of the book are set in the farming communities of Ohio, so I’m intrigued what readers over in the US think of my portrayal of rural life.

In de Boekenkas – Review

Rev. Rebecca Writes: Read, Write, Pray – Review and Q&A including a question on how to write about playing an musical instrument.

Stardust Book Review – Review

 

 

Do you like to read about free chapters and short stories, or find out more about your favourite author including their work in progress?

Interested? Then sign up for my reader’s club newsletter: Rachel’s Readers and you’ll receive a complementary short story.

Blog Tour Day 1. Come meet the book bloggers

I’m excited to be setting out today on a book tour featuring The Last Thing She Said.  It’s a seven day amble, taking in book bloggers and reviewers, and I’m delighted they have offered to host me on their websites. A big thank you to everyone helping me promote my new book.

Today I’m visiting …

Trail of Tales  – review

The Magic of Wor(l)ds – Featuring a guest post on Magical Realism

Herding Cat – Review

I hope you find the time to stop by and join us.

AMAZON

The Last Thing She Said – who will believe her?

Birthdays are family time. The giving and receiving of presents, a cake maybe, and perhaps a party.

For Rose, a birthday is a day to spend in the company of her granddaughters. She likes cake, especially chocolate cake, and always has one candle on top of it to blow out. What she also does is say something, a few words. The trouble is, they don’t make much sense to her granddaughters. They listen, and forget, or so it might appear. What do you do if your grandmother claims to know the future, hears things that will come true? Each of the three sisters has to decide what to do. What if Rose really does have a gift?

Rose puckered her lips and slowly expelled a stream of air. The diminutive flame flickered for a second then died. Through the threads of smoke that lingered above the birthday cake, Rose’s pale eyes fixed on Naomi. When she spoke, her warbling voice was stretched, but the revelatory words were enunciated clearly.

‘Beware of a man named Frederick and his offer of marriage.’ Rose blinked and gave a small satisfactory nod. ‘Cut a slice for me, love.’

Naomi glanced to her side. Rebecca was poised, holding the fake ivory handle of the cake knife with a white-knuckled grasp.

‘I don’t know anyone called Frederick,’ Naomi whispered into Rebecca’s ear. She’d no plans to marry gaming geek Kyle, or any other man for that matter, at least not until she could see the benefit outshine the exuberant cost and extensive planning needed.

Rebecca pressed the knife through the layer of marble icing. ‘She’s done it. That’s all that matters,’ she said quietly.

‘What’s that?’ Rose cocked an ear towards her granddaughters. Even if Naomi bothered to ask questions, Rose, with a humorous twinkle in her eye, would likely shrug dismissively. Sometimes she claimed it was a spirit that dropped the thought into her head, other times she implied the eruption of a whispering voice was due to the revitalising energy of her birthday. The lack of consistency significantly weakened Rose’s sage advice.

On the other side of the stained kitchen table, Leia removed the plate from Rose’s hand.

‘Here, Gran, let me help you.’ She thrust the plate at Rebecca. ‘Just slice the cake. She’s had her moment.’

Her moment, as Leia put it, was something of a tradition on Rose’s birthday. The sugary-topped sponge, which Rebecca had baked that morning, the solitary pink candle and the customary extinguishing of the flame, were a necessary precursor to the miniature party. Without fail, every year, Rose, with her salt and pepper hair swept back from her face into a bun, leaned toward the candle, and spoke her words of prophecy. The only difference this time was she had said them directly to Naomi instead of to a spot on the far wall.

 

If you’re intrigued, then head over to Amazon. The Last Thing She Said is now live, available on Kindle and in print. Don’t miss out on finding out a family secret.

Three Sisters. Three Gifts. One Prophecy

“Beware of a man named Frederick and his offer of marriage.”

Rose’s granddaughters, Rebecca, Leia and Naomi, have never taken her prophecies seriously. But now that Rose is dead, and Naomi has a new man in her life, should they take heed of this mysterious warning?

Naomi needs to master the art of performing. Rebecca rarely ventures out of her house. She’s afraid of what she might see. As for Rebecca’s twin, everyone admires Leia’s giant brain, but now the genius is on the verge of a breakdown.

Rebecca suspects Naomi’s new boyfriend is hiding something. She begs Leia, now living in the US, to investigate.

Leia’s search takes her to a remote farm in Ohio on the trail of the truth behind a tragic death.

Just who is Ethan? And what isn’t he telling Naomi?

In a story full of drama and mystery, the sisters discover there is more that connects them than they realise, and that only together can they discover exactly what’s behind Rose’s prophecy.

The Last Thing She Said

Who will believe her?

Amazon

(Print and Kindle)

Interested? Then sign up for my reader’s club newsletter: Rachel’s Readers and you’ll receive a complementary short story.