Foreword for Guest Blog

Readers and Writers, I published my medieval fiction Heir to Malla in 2020. The story unfolds as Princess Meera learns her brother Crown Prince Jay is missing. She sends the man she is in love with, Rish Vindhya, to search for him. Prince Amar of Padi, known for his penchant for violence, harbors desires for Malla and Meera. Suddenly, Meera is catapulted into the battle for her kingdom. If Jay is not found, the price she needs to pay is steep, her love and happiness.

As a 2020 Debut author, I wanted to showcase a fellow author’s book in my blog this week.

Guest Blog by Elizabeth Holland

The Vintage Bookshop of Memories

The Vintage Bookshop of Memories follows Prue Clemonte as she returns home for her grandmother’s funeral. Settling back into village life isn’t easy, especially when Prue becomes the victim of village gossip. As she re-arranges her life Prue stumbles upon a web of secrets that is about to turn her life upside down. To complicate matters even further she’s beginning to fall for Elliot Harrington, however his father is intent on splitting them up.

Prue won’t let a village full of people who hate her stop her from living her life and being happy. With the help of Elliot, Prue is determined to win the village over and make herself a life back home in Ivy Hatch. However, she soon begins to realise that she’s lost herself in her quest for the truth. As Prue battles to find herself can she save the bookshop, whilst also stopping the village from ruining her life?

The story behind The Vintage Bookshop of Memories 

The Vintage Bookshop of Memories was created from my desire to write a book that felt comforting. I wanted it to encompass everything that I enjoy, from an idyllic village life to vintage fashion. This book is everything that I would want to read. Essentially the story is about a woman’s quest for happiness. 

Ivy Hatch is based on a quintessential English village and every village needs an old-fashioned bookshop. The description of the bookshop has an almost magical edge to it, drawing the reading in and making them fell as though they are standing in the middle of the shop. 

‘A gasp escaped Prue as she stepped inside the shop. The smell of mustiness hit her senses as she blinked to adjust to the dim lighting. It was beautiful, a hidden treasure trove of books. If Prue could have designed her dream shop, this would be it. She stepped into the shop, leaving the door open slightly to allow some light in. A switch was to the left of the door but as she flicked it nothing happened. She would have to make do with the little natural light that the door was letting in. Books lined the walls from the floor to the ceiling. On the back wall stood a balcony, overlooking the entire shop with an old-fashioned ladder leading to it. Prue tiptoed around the room, running her fingers along the spines of all the books, they were thick with dust but they’d be fine after a good clean. There had to be thousands of books in here. She had always known her mother was a keen reader but she hadn’t known the true extent of her mother’s love for books. To the right of the shop was a counter in the same dark wood as the bookshelves, perched on the top was an old fashioned till. It was beautiful. Prue had come across a few of these during her time working in auction houses but never had she found one in such pristine condition, at least it would be pristine if it wasn’t covered in a layer of dust.’ – Chapter 4, The Vintage Bookshop of Memories.

The Vintage Bookshop of Memories uses creative and imaginative language to make the reader feel as though they are within the pages of the book. 

The Character’s in The Vintage Bookshop of Memories 

When creating my characters I want them to be fierce and inspiring and yet I don’t want them to lose that human edge. Therefore I immediately knew that whilst Prue had to be strong and independent she still had to have flaws. She makes bad decisions, drinks too much gin and all too often allows her decisions to be swayed by her emotions. 

‘With a sickening realisation Prue saw a delivery driver stood on the driveway surrounded by boxes. She had forgotten that she had spent a small fortune (actually, there was nothing small about it) on clothes last night. With some reluctance she opened the door and signed on the dotted line…

With a growing sense of excitement Prue pulled out the first garment. A crop top. What had she been thinking? As Prue pulled more items out she noticed a few that she liked the look of and so she put them to one side, the rest she could return. She would have donated some of the items to a charity shop but she couldn’t see the women of Ivy Hatch wearing a spangly diamanté handkerchief top.’ – Chapter 29, The Vintage Bookshop of Memories

Prue is the kind of woman that I aspire to be. Strong, resilient, focused on her own happiness and occasionally ordering too many clothes. 

A final word…

The Vintage Bookshop of Memories will transport you to Ivy Hatch and you’ll find yourself not wanting to leave. 

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