Related to: 'Rosanna Ley on landscape and creativity'

Quercus

Her Mother's Secret

Rosanna Ley
Authors:
Rosanna Ley

Escape to the heart of beautiful, sun-drenched Brittany with the bestselling author of The Villa and The Little Theatre by the Sea. The perfect treat for fans of Santa Montefiore and Veronica Henry.For most of her life Colette has avoided returning to her homeland - the beautiful island of Belle-Ile - afraid to confront the painful memories she left behind. She is living on the Cornish coast when she hears about her mother Thea's failing health and reluctantly she decides to return. But can Colette ever forgive Thea for what she has done?Despite Colette's wariness, romantic Belle-Ile, where her mother runs the local flower shop, still fascinates her and as Thea opens up to her for the first time, Colette finds herself softening and being drawn back into the landscape of her past. She meets Étienne, a tortured soul who shares her confused feelings towards the island, and a strong bond begins to develop between them.But the ghosts of the past still linger. What happened all those years ago and how did it cause the rift between mother and daughter? It becomes clear that the beauty of Belle-Ile hides a devastating family secret - one that Colette is determined to unravel at any cost.

Quercus

The Little Theatre by the Sea

Rosanna Ley
Authors:
Rosanna Ley

The bestselling author of The Villa and The Saffron Trail returns with a gorgeous summer read about love and starting over - set in West Dorset and beautiful Sardinia. Perfect for fans of Santa Montefiore, Dinah Jefferies and Harriet Evans.Faye has just completed her degree in interior design when she finds herself jobless and boyfriend-less. While debating what to do next she receives a surprise phone call from her old college friend Charlotte who now lives in Sardinia and is married to Italian hotelier, Fabio.When Charlotte suggests that Faye relocate for a month to house-sit, Faye wonders if a summer break in sunny Sardinia might be the perfect way to recharge her batteries and think about her future. But then Charlotte tells Faye that there's something more behind the sudden invitation: her friends Marisa and Alessandro are looking for a designer to renovate a crumbling old theatre they own in the scenic village of Deriu. The idea certainly sounds appealing to Faye, but little does she know what she's letting herself in for if she accepts this once-in-a-lifetime opportunity . . .

Quercus

The People We Were Before

Annabelle Thorpe
Authors:
Annabelle Thorpe

If war is madness, how can love survive?Yugoslavia, summer 1979. A new village. A new life. But eight-year-old Miro knows the real reason why his family moved from the inland city of Knin to the sunkissed village of Ljeta on the Dalmatian Coast, a tragedy he tries desperately to forget. The Ljeta years are happy ones, though, and when he marries his childhood sweetheart, and they have a baby daughter, it seems as though life is perfect. However, storm clouds are gathering above Yugoslavia.War breaks out, and one split-second decision destroys the life Miro has managed to build. Driven by anger and grief, he flees to Dubrovnik, plunging himself into the hard-bitten world of international war reporters.There begins a journey that will take him ever deeper into danger: from Dubrovnik, to Sarajevo, to the worst atrocities of war-torn Bosnia, Miro realises that even if he survives, there can be no way back to his earlier life. The war will change him, and everyone he loves, forever.

Quercus

Last Dance in Havana

Rosanna Ley
Authors:
Rosanna Ley

Cuba, 1958. Elisa is only sixteen years old when she meets Duardo and she knows he's the love of her life from the moment they first dance the rumba together in downtown Havana. But Duardo is a rebel, determined to fight in Castro's army, and Elisa is forced to leave behind her homeland and rebuild her life in distant England. But how can she stop longing for the warmth of Havana, when the music of the rumba still calls to her?England, 2012. Grace has a troubled relationship with her father, whom she blames for her beloved mother's untimely death. And this year more than ever she could do with a shoulderto cry on - Grace's career is in flux, she isn't sure she wants the baby her husband is so desperate to have and, worst of all, she's begun to develop feelings for their best friend Theo. Theo is a Cuban born magician but even he can't make Grace's problems disappear. Is the passion Grace feels for Theo enough to risk her family's happiness?From bestselling author Rosanna Ley comes an exotic tale of love, family and friendship set between England and Cuba.(P)2016 WF Howes Ltd

Heron Books

The Road to Rangoon

Lucy Cruickshanks
Authors:
Lucy Cruickshanks

In 1980s Burma, the British ambassador's son goes missing.Discovered in the north of the country, Michael Atwood is in imminent danger, trapped between sides fighting a bitter civil war and with no way of getting back to Rangoon. His best hope of salvation is to trust Thuza, a ruby smuggler who offers to help him escape.Beautiful and deeply scarred, Thuza has spent her entire life in a frontier town between rebel and government forces, never choosing a side but trying to make a living from both. For Thuza, the ambassador's son is her ticket out of poverty. For Than, an ambitious military officer, exploiting those caught up in the war offers an opportunity for promotion and distinction.But as all three learn to their cost, in this exotic, enigmatic and savage country, everyone has a price.This is a tale of ambition, salvation and hope that confirms Lucy Cruickshanks as a master storyteller.

Quercus

The Saffron Trail

Rosanna Ley
Authors:
Rosanna Ley
Quercus

Return to Mandalay

Rosanna Ley
Authors:
Rosanna Ley

Quercus

Bay of Secrets

Rosanna Ley
Authors:
Rosanna Ley

Spain, 1939. Following the wishes of her parents to keep her safe during the war, a young girl, Julia, enters a convent in Barcelona. Looking for a way to maintain her links to the outside world, she volunteers to help in a maternity clinic. But worrying adoption practices in the clinic force Sister Julia to decide how far she will go to help those placed in her care. England, 2011. Six months after her parents' shocking death, 34-year-old journalist and jazz enthusiast Ruby Rae has finally found the strength to pack away their possessions and sell the family home. But as she does so, she unearths a devastating secret her parents, Vivien and Tom, had kept from her all her life.(P)2014 WF Howes Ltd

Quercus

The Italian Quarter

Domenica De Rosa
Authors:
Domenica De Rosa

Sophie is only a quarter Italian. But that quarter is her charismatic grandfather Cesare, and he has instilled in her a great love of her Italian heritage. So when a journalist starts to investigate Cesare's war record, Sophie reluctantly questions just how proud she should really be. She embarks upon a journey into the past which takes her from nineteenth-century Naples to London's Italian quarter and one of the war's forgotten tragedies. And along the way she also learns something very important about herself...

Quercus

The Eternal City

Domenica De Rosa
Authors:
Domenica De Rosa
Quercus

One Summer in Tuscany

Domenica De Rosa
Authors:
Domenica De Rosa

Rivalries and romance in a Tuscan paradise. A relaxing writers' retreat? If only! Perfect holiday reading from Domenica de Rosa, author of the bestselling Dr Ruth Galloway series under the name Elly Griffiths. Previously published as SUMMER SCHOOL.Patricia Wilson's carefully composed ads for the writers' retreat she runs at her thirteenth-century Italian castle promise so much. But while the splendour of their surroundings and chef Aldo's melanzane never fail to wow the guests, huge maintenance bills and bad news from the bank threaten to close Patricia down. It's make or break time for the Castello.Each of her seven aspiring authors arrives with the inevitable baggage alongside their unpublished manuscripts. But this August something is different, and soon lifelong spinster Mary is riding on the back of Aldo's vespa, and smouldering odd-job man Fabio has set more than one heart racing.As temperatures rise, the writers gossip, flirt and gently polish their prose by the pool. But with ghosts, scorpions, and some unexpected visitors to contend with, one thing's for sure: neither the Castello, nor Patricia, has ever seen a summer like this.

Quercus

Villa Serena

Domenica De Rosa
Authors:
Domenica De Rosa

A heartfelt, witty story of one woman's journey from heartbreak to adventure, full of gorgeous Italian flavour. Emily Robertson looks like the woman who has it all: the lovingly restored Tuscan farmhouse, the three beautiful children, the successful, attentive husband. But when her husband dumps her by text message, she has to face up to some stark home truths. How will Emily cope, stranded in the countryside with no man, no money, dodgy phrasebook Italian and a psychotic cleaner? Her eldest girl is out of her depth with the local seducer, her middle daughter is dangerously underweight, and her darling baby is fast becoming a brat. But soon Emily finds herself being drawn into the village of Monte Albano, and discovering a more genuine Italy, darker and more intriguing than she had ever imagined.  She and her children are outsiders no more - and if she can get over a slightly embarrasing obsession with her youthful first love, an attractive stranger might be about to show her the time of her life...

Quercus

The Villa

Rosanna Ley
Authors:
Rosanna Ley

Rosanna Ley

Rosanna Ley works as a creative tutor and has written many articles and stories for national magazines. Her writing holidays and retreats take place in stunning locations in Spain and Italy. When she is not travelling, Rosanna lives in West Dorset by the sea.

Rosanna Ley's top tips for fiction writing

Rosanna Ley is the best selling author of The Villa, Bay of Secrets and the forthcomingReturn to Mandalay. She has worked as a creative tutor for over twelve years, leading workshops in the UK and abroad, and has completed an MA in creative writing. Her writing holidays and retreats take place in stunning locations in Italy and Spain. Rosanna has written numerous articles and stories for national magazines. When she is not travelling, Rosanna lives in West Dorset by the sea. www.rosannaley.co.uk ROSANNA’S TOP TIPS • Let the idea for your story compost while you indulge in free writing/ thought-storming/ day-dreaming/ going for long walks etc. Create a space for your story. • Switch off your phone and avoid Internet and social media for at least 3 hours a day to enable more writing time. • Don’t just write what you know – write what you want to explore and discover. • Get inside your characters’ heads by being there with them – as far as you are able. • Check that your dialogue sounds natural, isn’t written in speeches, is not too heavy on dialect and doesn’t include too many extravagant tags like ‘he enthused…’ • Remember – every scene should progress the story in some way. • Create characters who are believable, interesting, fully rounded and who don’t do impossible things. • Forget the word count and cut, cut, cut – especially the waffly and self-indulgent bits. Less is more. • Never forget that readers are intelligent. They do not have to have everything explained to them as if they were four years old. Have faith. • Read your work out loud to yourself and the dog or a willing partner. Not so much for feedback (esp from dog) but to listen to the rhythms of your writing and to spot slow pace, repetition and sag. • Listen to criticism. Take most of it on board. Don’t allow yourself to be destroyed by negativity. Re-work. Re-write. Persevere. • Remember that writing is work. And you’re on your own. But you can still have fun.

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Paul Engles: MacLehose Editor in the hot seat

Quercus Summer Quiz

What would you pick as your perfect poolside read? I might go nuts and re-read Game of Thrones or Conn Iggulden's War of the Roses series. Though last time I was away I read a submission that ended up being too good to turn down: The President's Gardens by Muhsin Al-Ramli, out in April. What five items would you take with you to a desert island? A drum kit, a kindle, an ice cream van, a Blackadder Boxset and a football (and 9 other people to play with if possible). If you could travel for 6 months with a fictional character, who would that be? Oedipa Maas from The Crying of Lot 49 by Thomas Pynchon. We'd be guaranteed crazy adventures. Describe the best meal you’ve had while on holiday Fresh fish from the sea in Sri Lanka -- but bear in mind that was the most recent holiday. What’s your favourite setting in a book that you’ve read? The world building in A Song of Fire and Ice is the most convincing I've ever come across. Jurassic Park would be fun to visit, of course. Quick fire round Beach break or city break? City Hot climate or cold climate? Hot Plane or boat? Boat Scuba dive or pedalo? Pedalo Sandcastle or bat and ball? Sandcastle UK or abroad? Abroad Pool or beach? Beach Have you ever had a nightmare holiday? I went one too many times to celebrate King's Day in Amstersdam. And the vibe is changing there, seems more narrow-minded to me. If you could do any job in the world, what would it be? I'm not falling for that one!

Paul Engles, editor of MacLehose Press takes our quick-fire quiz

The #QuercusSummer Quiz

What would you pick as your perfect poolside read? I might go nuts and re-read Game of Thrones or Conn Iggulden's War of the Roses series. Though last time I was away I read a submission that ended up being too good to turn down: The President's Gardens by Muhsin Al-Ramli, out in April. What five items would you take with you to a desert island? A drum kit, a kindle, an ice cream van, a Blackadder Boxset and a football (and 9 other people to play with if possible). If you could travel for 6 months with a fictional character, who would that be? Oedipa Maas from The Crying of Lot 49 by Thomas Pynchon. We'd be guaranteed crazy adventures. Describe the best meal you’ve had while on holiday Fresh fish from the sea in Sri Lanka -- but bear in mind that was the most recent holiday. What’s your favourite setting in a book that you’ve read? The world building in A Song of Fire and Ice is the most convincing I've ever come across. Jurassic Park would be fun to visit, of course. Quick fire round Beach break or city break? City Hot climate or cold climate? Hot Plane or boat? Boat Scuba dive or pedalo? Pedalo Sandcastle or bat and ball? Sandcastle UK or abroad? Abroad Pool or beach? Beach Have you ever had a nightmare holiday? I went one too many times to celebrate King's Day in Amstersdam. And the vibe is changing there, seems more narrow-minded to me. If you could do any job in the world, what would it be? I'm not falling for that one!

Annabelle Thorpe

Annabelle Thorpe has been a travel and features journalist for fifteen years, writing for national print and online media. She currently works as a freelance, writing mostly for the Times, Telegraph and Guardian, alongside copywriting, non-fiction travel books and PR consultancy work for the National Trust. Alongside her journalism, Annabelle completed an MA in Contemporary History in September 2012 and is an alumna of Curtis Brown Creative. She lives in Angmering, West Sussex

Domenica De Rosa

Domenica de Rosa started her career working at the Bookseller, and went on to work in children's publishing, in publicity and in editorial. Under the name Elly Griffiths she is the author of the acclaimed and bestselling Dr Ruth Galloway series of mysteries, and the Stephens and Mephisto mysteries. Domenica is half-Italian and loves the Tuscan coast, although she mainly settles for Brighton, where she lives with her husband, their twins and their cat.