Monday, December 30, 2013

Bridget Jones Revisited and At Sea

Mad about The Boy by Helen Fielding: It was a delight to catch up with Bridget in (supposedly) her early fifties, a single mother with two small children to bring up, and I thoroughly enjoyed this book - as I knew I would. Fielding has a light touch with the prose, a good sense of comedy and also knows how to make a serious point with grace.

That said, the heroine doesn't strike me as any woman I know in her early fifties, as she is still as scatty and manic as she was in her twenties - so she's not moved on much. Still if you can put that particular reality to one side, you have a very enjoyable read, with a suitably romantic ending (Four Stars).

At Sea by Laurie Graham: This is simply a scintillatingly good book. The prose is fresh, ironic and delightful, and the main character Lady Enid is a delight. I loved the story of how she discovers who her husband Bernard really is and where he came from, and the other people Enid gets to know on the cruise are also very well depicted.

There are some great comic moments on the way, as well as some glorious discoveries, and the manner in which Enid orchestrates her secret revenge on the very tricksy Bernard is very satisfying indeed. I loved it. (5 Stars)

Sunday, December 29, 2013

Books published in 2013 and Coming Up in 2014

A quick recap on the literary year and also what's ahead. In 2013, the following books have been published:

Rosie By Name: a comic romance (Anne Brooke Books)
Taking A Chance: gay BDSM romance (Wilde City Press)
Dido's Tale: FREE romantic short story (Anne Brooke Books)
A Dangerous Man: gay thriller (Amber Allure Press)
Thorn in The Flesh: bisexual thriller (Untreed Reads)
Maloney's Law (Maloney *1): gay thriller (Amber Allure Press)
The Beginning of Knowledge: gay literary erotica (Wilde City Press)
The Bones of Summer (Maloney *2): gay thriller (Amber Allure Press)
The Gifting (Gathandria *1): epic gay-themed fantasy (Anne Brooke Books)
Hallsfoot's Battle (Gathandria *2): epic gay-themed fantasy (Anne Brooke Books)
The Prayer Seeker: FREE Christian novella (Anne Brooke Books)
The Executioner's Cane (Gathandria *3): epic gay-themed fantasy (Anne Brooke Books)

Coming up in 2014 are:
The Girl in the Painting and Other Stories: short story collection (January 2014, Untreed Reads)
The Paranormal Detection Agency: gay paranormal romance (Spring 2014, Amber Allure Press)
Pink Champagne and Apple Juice: romantic comedy (6 April 2014, Amber Quill Press)

You can find out more at the Latest News page on my website.

A Selection of Wordles taken from my fantasy and comic fiction

From romantic comedy Rosie by Name:

From FREE gay-themed fantasy The Gifting (Gathandria *1):

From FREE gay-themed fantasy Hallsfoot's Battle (Gathandria *2):

From FREE gay-themed fantasy The Executioner's Cane (Gathandria *3):

Find out more at the Gathandrian site (all the books in the trilogy are FREE) and the Rosie By Name site.

Saturday, December 07, 2013

Boys, birds and au revoir

Book News:

Gay erotic romance Taking a Chance is now available at All Romance Ebooks. This week, it gained a very nice review at Boys in Our Books Reviews:

"This is my first experience of this author and I really enjoyed this short story - it was very nicely done considering the length. Anne Brooke paints a clear picture of these men not only through Benjamin's point of view but through dialogue … I was fully engaged very early on and was left wanting more."

Not much else going on in Anne's Book World at the moment. I'm waiting for publishers to respond to a couple of submissions but I'm not holding out much hope in either case. The older I get, the more resigned I become to it all, hence the recent stepping back in terms of my writing commitment.

Still, I've started scribbling away every now and again at a straight fantasy/magic realism novel, so I'll see how that goes over the months to come. I think I'm simply rather fed up with the whole cycle, i.e. I throw myself 100% into making something the best it can be, several very lovely people read it and are hugely nice about it (for which enormous and enduring thanks!), other people of course are suitably scathing, but ... um ... very few people actually buy it, no matter how good or bad the reviews. It doesn't seem to be any different from that and, frankly, I find it ultimately very depressing. I've never made any money from this game and I imagine, now, I never will. Hey ho.

Life News:

Still, if the writing world is basically pretty rubbish, at least other things in life are nice. This week's cake is Chocolate and Orange Marble Cake, which has a distinctly Christmassy feel about it. And the garden is somehow full of roses still in bloom in December(!) and a flock of goldfinches also visited us this morning - all very cheery, thank goodness.

Mind you, I played some pretty grim golf on Friday - the amount of laughter was directly opposed to the skill of our game, for sure. However, I did get the car cleaned inside and out by the golf course car cleaners, and a marvellous job they did too.

This morning, a trip to Wisley resulted in a new orchid - with scent! - and an orange tree, so the house has a very exotic feel just now, hurrah. That's certainly set us up for the season.

Anyway, I'm going to give my blog a break for a while, as it's becoming a bit of a chore to be honest - so I hope you all have a very happy Christmas, and that the New Year will be kind to you.

Every good wish

Anne Brooke