The internet is a wonderful place – sometimes it can take you on a journey of discovery, there I was on Streetlife promoting my Happy Hookers and Knit wit’s group when up popped a post about local authors selling their books. In no time I had clicked on the link and ten minutes later I found myself fully absorbed in this wonderful book.
I clicked on the link initially because I believe passionately that we should all try and support local artists and writers. I believe publishing has been destroyed; like so many things in our society, where the driving force is make money rather than publish good books.
I have read a couple of self published books before, so I was not expecting a great deal but I was pleasantly surprised. From the very first page, I was absorbed in the story, something quite rare these days, not only was the quality of writing excellent but the characters were engaging from the start.
It was the sort of day when the roads melt. So William and I don’t take them. Instead I clamber over the garden fence … grass ripples around my feet and ankles, filled with the buzz of summer.
So begins the tale of the Cheesemaker’s house – Alice begins a new life in Yorkshire after her divorce – with plans to renovate her barn into a holiday let.
My mental image of a Yorkshire builder was a rotund man in a cloth cap who would exhibit a great deal of sucking of teeth when confronted with my barn. I certainly didn’t expect Richard Wainwright to be tall, dark and handsome.
Welcomed by the locals she soon hires handsome Richard to renovate her barn but they both begin to hear crying that brings Alice to the brink.
Owen a local ‘herbalist and healer’ meets Alice in church – he is quiet and caring completely different to Richard. Pretty soon the three of them become entangled as the past and present meet when the body of a baby is discovered buried in the floor of the barn.
Jane’s writing flows easily from the page, Alice is a strong character – likeable, down to earth and no-nonsense. Her patience with the Owen went beyond mine to be honest. I did find at one point I was rather fed up with Owen’s mood swings. Owen’s disappearance was not fully explained, it was irritating and I never really understood why Alice loved him so much, but then I have never found vulnerability in men appealing.
As a hero in true romantic novel style- Owen is too weak. Yet it is the very fact that he is not perfect brings the story together – it makes Owen a human being and this novel a little less shallow than a romantic romp.
The incidents where the past and present meet – were limited to sound and vision – I would have liked them to be richer – using all the character’s senses but maybe Jane intended them to be fleeting glimpses.
That said it is well worth a read – an engaging tale, light hearted with a little bit of the supernatural but nothing to give you nightmares
The writer self published because because the book doesn’t really sit neatly into a category! Yet, the mixture of supernatural and romance was just what I had been looking for! You can find out about the author, Jane Cable on her website but the really wonderful discovery is that Amazon has now shown me a whole list of authors I hadn’t heard of before to explore.