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New Book – THE HOUSE OF YORK by TERRY TYLER

Firstly, thanks so much to the New Romantics Press for featuring my new book here – it is an honour indeed!

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Terry Tyler – author

It’s a pleasure to support a fellow author, Terry, and we have learned so much about the publishing world through following yours and Rosie Amber’s blogs (to name but two). So, fire away and tell us all about your new novel – The House of York.

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The House of York is a contemporary family drama, spanning the years 1993 – 2014. A bit darker than my previous novels, it features some dastardly secrets and a smattering of murderous intent, not to mention a couple of inappropriate relationships. The story centres around Lisa Grey, a widowed single mother from a fairly working class family who meets wealthy businessman Elias York. Enter stage left: the rest of his dysfunctional family 🙂

The story was inspired by the events of the Wars of the Roses, though it’s not an actual retelling of history, like Kings and Queens and Last Child (about the Lanchester family, modern day Tudors). I hasten to add that you don’t need any knowledge of history to enjoy this book, though anyone who knows a bit about the Plantagenet era will recognise the York brothers, and others.

I hadn’t intended to write a sequel, but my test readers all say that the massive twist at the end made them want to carry on reading, so I shall be starting that very soon; it’s already begun in my head, usually when I’m doing things like cooking (cue overcooked vegetables).

I’m thrilled that the book has already gained some very positive reviews, and even more delighted that several people started reading it the minute it was published – the biggest compliment a writer can have. THANK YOU!

If you live outside the UK, you can take a look at The House of York here:

New Romantics Press is really looking forward to reading and reviewing THE HOUSE OF YORK, Terry. You may not know this, but we live in Leicester and recently, Lizzie visited the Richard III exhibition. Here are a few photos to get you writing that sequel. A turbulent time in history, indeed. Good luck with this and all future projects.

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The stone catafalque which marks the place where KRIII was re-interrred

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A detail of the pall which covered his coffin while it was waiting to be re-interred

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KRIII statue outside Leicester Cathedral – recently moved from Castle Park.

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A reconstruction of Richard Third. They now believe that he had ‘dark blond’ hair and are about to change the wig to reflect this!

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Lizzie’s Real Life Ghostly Experience

This is a true story, verified by Lizzie’s sisters –

Ellen Humber and Phyllis Fell.

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Here I am with sister Ellen, Phyllis and brother William outside of our house in College Avenue, Leicester.

KNOCK, KNOCK, WHO’S THERE?

 – Leicester circa 1964

In 1962, my family –including Granny and the dog all moved from Scotland to live in Leicester in a rambling palisaded villa. Apart from my Granny, all the adults went out to work – Mother in one of the many shoe factories dotted around Leicester and Dad on a building site as a scaffolder. I was thirteen years old and my siblings ranged below me at eight, six and four years of age respectively. We were rarely alone in the house as Granny was there to welcome us home from school and to give us our evening meal before the adults arrived in from work.

There was something spooky about that house in College Avenue, it had a long dark corridor which led from the front door to the breakfast room, scullery and kitchen at the rear. Other doors opened off the corridor giving onto a sitting room and a gloomy dining room in turn. Once, the house must have been splendid, in a Gothic sort of way; high ceilings, marble fireplaces, deep cornices and even bells to ring for the servants in each room. But to us kids it was a scary place and we didn’t like to be left on our own. In fact, there were certain rooms which the dog wouldn’t enter – without its hackles rising.

One day Granny decided to visit her brother in London which meant leaving us alone for several hours until Mother returned from the factory. Granny was very unhappy with this arrangement, but eventually agreed to visit her brother – albeit with the proviso that all four children, plus dog locked ourselves in our parents’ bedroom and stayed there until Mother came home.

Granny left, and I locked us in our temporary prison with food, drink, comics, toys, radio, the dog and a chamber pot in case of emergencies! We watched Granny walk to the end of the street and then settled down for a boring couple of hours until Mother arrived home. Time passed slowly and we tried to guess where Granny was on her journey – Luton, Bedford, St Pancras, the underground . . .

Then, the strangest thing happened.

We heard Granny’s footsteps climbing the stairs and coming along the landing towards the bedroom. The door knob turned once and then sprang back to its original position. Being kids we thought nothing of it. Ours was an old house and things were always sticking and jamming. Then, stranger still, we heard Granny calling out my name: ‘Betty. Betty,’ in her unmistakable Scottish accent. I looked at my sister Ellen for confirmation of what I’d heard and then walked over to the bedroom door and tried the handle. The door was still locked and the key was on our side, just as I’d left it. I went to unlock the door, but remembering the promise I’d made to Granny to stay put until Mother came home, I changed my mind.

My sister and I sat down on the bed and looked at each other, more puzzled than frightened.  When Mother came home, we were simply glad to be allowed to run outside and play and didn’t tell her about Granny’s voice, the footsteps or the door knob turning.

Years later I brought up the subject with my sister.

‘We did hear Granny’s footsteps and her voice, didn’t we?’ I asked.

‘We did,’ my sister Ellen replied, emphatically. ‘She called out your name, twice and the door handle turned.’

We exchanged a look and shuddered, knowing that, as adults, we were only just beginning to comprehend we’d seen and heard that day. Had Granny been so worried about us being in the house alone, that she’d projecting her anxiety across the miles from London to Leicester? Or was it something ‘else’; something which wanted us to leave the safety of the bedroom and venture out on to the landing where it was waiting?

The same nameless terror which made us run down the long dark corridor to the safety of the kitchen every time – and the dog refuse to enter the large cupboard under the stairs where we played? Or, was it the old lady my father (the least fanciful of men) purported to have seen on several occasions standing at the foot of his bed looking distracted and mournful?

You decide.

My sister considers herself a ‘wee bit psychic’, while I consider myself a complete pragmatist. My other sister, Phyllis, told me recently that she’d seen the door handle turn on a couple of other occasions and had been too scared to leave her bedroom.  I know there must be a logical explanation for what happened and I’d feel a whole lot better if someone experienced in this field could explain it to me.

Then I could finally lay this story to rest – where it belongs.

This tale is included in this book of 13 supernatural short stories, which also features one written by fellow New Romantics Press author, Adrienne Vaughan – Seed of Doubt.

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#best seller

Adrienne and LIzzie at the Belmont with their copy of Hocus Pocus. No comments about them being witches . . .

Adrienne and LIzzie at the Belmont with their copy of Hocus Pocus. No comments about them being witches . . .

Just for fun – work out what your witch name would be.

WHAT IS YOUR WITCH NAME?

WHAT IS YOUR WITCH NAME?

A MOST DEADLY AFFAIR – LONGLISTED FOR COVETED AWARD

Adrienne Vaughan Author at RNA Conference

Picture by John Jackson

Adrienne’s first historical novel, A Most Deadly Affair, set in the 1950’s, was longlisted for the coveted Elizabeth Goudge Trophy at the Romantic Novelists’ Association (RNA) conference held at the Queen Mary University in London, recently.

The annual competition, which is judged on the first chapter of a so far unpublished novel, received a record number of entries this year and Adrienne was bowled over when it was announced A Most Deadly Affair had made it into the top six.

Award-winning author and current RNA Chairman, Eileen Ramsay, commented that the standard this year was extremely high, and A Most Deadly Affair’s premise of a heroine with exactly the same birthday as the Queen was fascinating; especially as she inherits the family business – a funeral parlour – at the same time as the Queen ascends the throne.

Adrienne is adding this achievement to a growing list of accolades. Debut novel, The Hollow Heart and follow-up, A Change of Heart were both shortlisted for awards at the Festival of Romantic Fiction 2013 and 2014 respectively whilst the conclusion of the trilogy, Secrets of the Heart will be submitted later this year.

Currently working on her new novel, Scandal of the Seahorse Hotel, Adrienne is taking a break to attend the Romance Writers of America’s (RWA) conference in New York next week.

“I am thrilled to have my work recognised, especially as many of the writers who entered are long-established, best sellers who I have always admired. It goes some way to demonstrate my writing career is moving in the right direction, keeping everything crossed – even my eyes – when I say that, of course.” She commented.                              

The Elizabeth Goudge trophy was donated by the English author and distinguished former Vice President of the Association, Elizabeth Goudge. Since 2000 it has been associated with—and presented at—the RNA‘s Annual Conference. The award is open to all RNA members attending the conference, published or unpublished. The theme of the competition is set by the chairman and varies from year to year; this year’s theme was Family Values.

Adrienne Vaughan was interviewed recently by Rosie Amber, blogger and book reviewer, read what she had to say.

Author Event at Waterstones, Kensington, London brings another successful year to a close!

 

The Girls in the Band

 

We are happy to ask you to join us in celebrating an exciting and successful year for the New Romantics Press.

Adrienne’s story:

When you think about it, our story might not be amazing, show-stopping or world-breaking …but it is interesting. What started as June’s original concept: “Let’s hold a showcase for our work.” Quickly followed by Amanda Grange’s advice: “Publish independently and then you’ll have something to show.” Add Lizzie’s gritty determination to keep us all on track; my PR background and Mag’s literary connections and I must admit, as my third novel sits patiently in the wings (ready to be launched at the end of this month), I feel a tiny smidgen of pride for what we have achieved. Nine novels, each individually penned, and one anthology of short stories, to which Lizzie and I have contributed … in just two years, is not bad going. 

Add, excellent reviews, not-to-be-sniffed at sales and some fabulous author-events, topped off with our ‘packed-house’ showcase at Waterstones, Kensington earlier this month and well, it could all be deemed rather dazzling, and perhaps one could take just a second or two to rest on one’s laurels. Ah, what a team!

Not flippin’ likely. Bag about to be packed for the ‘World Premiere’ of Secrets of the Heart, to take place where the story opens, Neary’s Cocktail Bar, Chatham Street, Dublin 2 on Wednesday, December 3rd, 7.30pm – 9pm. See you there? Did I ever tell you, “Don’t Stop Me Now,” by Queen, is my anthem? 

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June’s story:

Too far out? Too close to the City.

Pub, Club? Bar or Bookshop.

When son Patrick and his partner Tom suggested hosting a launch for us in London, it set them off searching the streets for weeks – (a bit like trying to find a house, but cheaper.)

Tricky stairs, dicky lift. Too blow-all-of-the-budget? Ooh, no buzz. A little bit Rovers Return?

Then Adrienne wrapped it all up with her cracking connection – Waterstones!

And, it was wonderful – a real winner,(see pictures!)

Wine flowed, books were sold, lots of lovely people came to support us,(thank you, all of you!!) and, as you can see from those pics – apart from missing Mags and her fab new book – we all had A Jolly Good Time.

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Mags’ story:

At a Romantic Novelists Association conference I remember a talk by a Literary Agent with a fearsome reputation saying she expected her writers to be healthy, and had no time for sickly ones. How ruthless, how unfeeling, I thought, but as an Indie author-cum-agent-publisher I now understand her. I was gutted not to be able to join my three New Romantics mates, Adrienne, June and Lizzie at our Author Showcase at Waterstones Kensington just 4 weeks after I had a much-needed, total right-knee replacement. Although in my head I believed I could be there, it finally dawned – duhh, no way. To compound my disappointment, my second novel Twins of a Gazelle was ready to be uploaded as a paperback on Create Space, and as an eBook ready for the event. I believed as soon as I was home from hospital I would steam ahead with this. Well, what did I know about how I’d actually feel in the aftermath of surgery?

I published my debut novel Last Bite of the Cherry) in 2012, and my second, Twins of a Gazelle will be available, I hope, in a couple of weeks. I can’t claim either novel is ‘romantic’, though both have a similar theme – clever woman, emotionally naïve, initially makes disastrous choice of man (men) before meeting ‘The One’. Not the conventional Girl-Meets-Boy love stories, but about love in its many guises nevertheless. To quote the latest reviewer of Last Bite of the Cherry, “This wasn’t going to be a straightforward romance. There were darker layers to this story. I was intrigued.” (Sharon Booth, Amazon and Goodreads). I hope readers will be equally intrigued by Twins of a Gazelle.

*****

Lizzie’s Story:

We little thought when we published Tall, Dark and Kilted, The Hollow Heart, An Englishwoman’s Guide to the Cowboy and Last Bite of the Cherry two years ago that we would go on to write second and third novels. Nor did we imagine, even in our wildest dreams, that we would hold an Author Event in a top London Bookshop – yet that’s exactly what we’ve accomplished. How? Through team work, keeping our eye on the ever changing publishing world and having determination by the shedload. For me, the Waterstones evening was a personal and professional milestone. When I set out to become a published author I thought I’d be happy with a few paperbacks to give to friends and rellies at Christmas, and to have the satisfaction of seeing my work in print. Yet, here I am – with readers emailing how much they loved both books; and with an accountant who, when asked what I could do to make his life better, said: “Get another book out there.” No pressure then.

Writing is a bit like trying to climb K9 – just when you think you’ve reached the summit, there’s another hill to climb to break through the clouds and into the sunshine. I couldn’t have got this far without the help of my husband Bongo Man, my many friends and fellow writers. So . . . Thanks to everyone who came to our Waterstones gig, even the Russian gentleman in tracksuit and combat jacket who drank a bottle and a half of red wine, ate all of M&S canapés and then scarpered when asked to buy one of our books. I only hope he wasn’t a famous editor/agent in disguise – or one of Vladimir Putin’s henchmen.

*****

Thank you for helping us have such a terrific year and here’s to a wonderful 2015 for everyone!

(All photographs are the copyright of The New Romantics Press/Carole Matthews)

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Breaking News – Adrienne shortlisted for award at Festival of Romantic Fiction

Adrienne Vaughan

The New Romantics 4 are delighted to announce that Adrienne Vaughan’s 5 star novel  A Change of Heart has been shortlisted in the Romance Reader Awards at the Festival of Romantic Fiction.

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As Sarah Taylor, awards organiser, says: “With the highest number of entries the awards have had in their four year history, the standard this year was exceptionally high with many highly rated novels not making the shortlists. The breath and depth of quality writing in romantic fiction should be celebrated and that’s what these awards are all about.”.You can read the complete lists for all categories here but this is the line up for Adrienne’s category:

Best Author Published

A Change of Heart by Adrienne Vaughan

Mary Bennet by Kate Allan

Sweet Occasions by Linn B Halton

Drumbeats by Julia Ibbotson

Fairlights by Jan Jones

Christmas Yves by Nicola May

 

The award ceremony is at the Festival of Romantic Fiction on the evening of Saturday 13th September 2014 at Leighton Buzzard Theatre. There are many fabulous events happening at the Festival to interest readers and writers alike. . . .the book fair in Leighton Buzzard High Street from 10am to 3pm and the Traditional Afternoon Tea with the Authors at The Green House, Market Square, Leighton Buzzard. Adrienne will be attending all of these but especially the Awards ceremony in the evening, The other members of the New Romantics 4, sadly cannot attend this year – Lizzie is chasing men in kilts in the highlands of Scotland (all in the interests of research, of course). June is packing up thirty years of her life in boxes prior to moving house and Mags is putting the finishing touches to her second novel. But we all say to our darling Ade – break a leg, sweetie, you have worked so hard to complete your ‘HEART’ trilogy and deserve all the accolades you can win. 

Here we are at last years Festival of Romance held in Bedford with all our gorgeous books on display. Hopefully, we’ll all be there next year with our third novels in tow.  

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