This evening I welcome author Mary Grand to my feature A Life in Books.
Can you tell me a bit about yourself?
Thank you for inviting me onto this lovely blog. My roots are in Wales but I now live on the Isle of Wight with my family and cocker spaniel, Pepper. (There is usually a cocker spaniel somewhere in my stories!)
I write Woman’s Fiction, the central character is usually a woman at a decisive point in her life.
“Hidden Chapters”, my latest novel, is set on Rhossili Bay, Gower. The novel is about Catrin who finally has to face those early experiences in her life that she has tried to keep hidden. The story explores motherhood, adoption and family secrets. One reviewer said ‘It shows us that love, especially parental love, should be unconditional, that what we see on the surface are sometimes only coping mechanisms , concealing a deep- felt pain”
Available from Amazon : http://amzn.eu/9D8dlqs
1. What was you favourite book from childhood?
When I was very young my favourite picture book was “Tinker the Kitten”. The first books I read for myself were the My Naughty Little Sister stories by Dorothy Edwards. Years later, when I re read these to my own children; I was struck by how innocent the stories were and was very surprised that I had ever thought she was a naughty child! I moved onto Enid Blyton and the Famous Five and Maroly Towers books. It is interesting that I enjoyed reading, almost exclusively, about children whose lives were so different to my own. I guess there was an element of escapism but I do think my own children were fortunate to have access to a much wider range of stories written by a whole new generation of gifted and inspired authors.
2. What type of books did you read as a teenager?
When I was a teenager I don’t remember books aimed specifically at teens. I simply moved into the adult part of the library and read mainly romances and Agatha Christie
3. When you were at school what your favourite book you studied was?
I was incredibly lucky to have the most wonderful English teacher at A Level. She made me love everything we read from Shakespeare to Orwell. I loved Hamlet and Pride and Prejudice.
4. What is your favourite classic book?
My favourite classic book has to be Rebecca by Daphne Du Maurier. The language, characters and plot are so wonderfully crafted. I have re read this book so many times. Recently I listened to Jenny Aguter reading it and it gave me a whole new perspective on the book.
5. What would you consider to be one of the best books you have had over the last 5 years?
Sacred Hearts by Sarah Dunant is an interesting and well researched historical novel set 1570 in the convent of Santa Caterina in northern Italy. The story revolves around two women who had entered holy orders for different reasons. It is fascinating insight into the life of convents at that time and very different to anything I had imagined.
6. What book do you think you should read but never get round to?
There are lots of them! Sitting next to my bed is the new book by Victoria Hislop, Cartes Postales from Greece. I love her books and am not sure why I keep getting distracted from it, I am sure I will read it soon.
7. What do you consider to be your favourite book?
My favourite book I think is “The Rector’s Wife” by Joanna Trollope. I love the central character Anna who stays with me. Her relationship with her husband who is a rector is heart breaking but very honest.
8. Is there a book that you have started but been unable to finish?
There was a time when all my friends and family were reading “The Lord of The Rings” by J R Tolkien and quoting from it. I really tried to get into it but I just couldn’t…tried again with the films and still not my thing.
9. If you were stranded on a desert Island which 2 books would you want to have with you
I think I would need something to make me laugh, so I think maybe I would choose a Bill Bryson book. ”A walk in the woods” is very funny. I would miss the countryside so I think one of the James Herriot books, an anthology like “All Creatures Great and Small”
10. Kindle or Book?
I read from my kindle a lot nowadays. I like to read long after my husband has gone to sleep and so the light on my kindle is great.
Twitter – @authormaryg
Facebook Author Page – https://www.facebook.com/authormarygrand/
Mary’s books are available to buy now.