PARISIAN LEGACY is a Good Housekeeping BEST SUMMER READ August 2023!

What an absolute thrill to have Parisian Legacy appear in the Good Housekeeping Summer Reading Special supplement this month! This marvellously escapist story follows three generations of a family in beautiful locations! Together with the sequel, Windsong, you will have your Summer Holiday Reading sewn up! Parisian Legacy is just £1.99 on Kindle to get you started!

Windsong News!

I have big news to tell you!  ‘Windsong’, the sequel to Parisian Legacy is available now! 
The story is set in three beautiful locations, Captiva Island in Florida, the Loire Valley in France and the iconic south coast of England. 
If you would like to catch up on Parisian Legacy first, you can buy it here. Enjoy!

Arles and the Legacy of Van Gogh

House sitting in the south of France has enabled me to see so many beautiful places! Arles was a feast of colour and sunshine.

After a leisurely lunch under a shady tree, we strolled along the River Rhone to admire the view that inspired Van Gogh’s painting, The Starry Night. I was privileged to see the painting at the Musée d’Orsay in Paris, a few years ago. It is spectacularly beautiful, but somehow, smaller than I expected. Perhaps that is because of the vastness of the gallery and it having its own spacious wall. (The painting is actually 74cm x 92cm)  

We explored narrow lanes, little boutiques and beautiful architecture. We even saw a wedding, with lots of bright petal confetti and a beautiful couple emerging from the church! There were just not enough hours in the day to see everything in Arles. Everywhere I looked there was a potential photograph! 

Van Gogh spent barely 18 months in Arles, and yet his legacy is everywhere. What a memorable day!

Feeling inspired!

I had no idea Montpellier would be so beautiful! It is a leafy enclave with little cafes and restaurants along interesting, narrow streets filled with boutiques and stylish shops. The Place de la Comédie is the centre of the lovely old part of the city, home to the opera house, magnificent statues and a cosmopolitan throng of people sitting outside in the sun.

House sitting, I can hardly believe it!

When I left my last stopover on the way down to the south of France, I was among beautiful mountains, grey skies and lots of drizzling rain. It was 9 degrees and chilly. After breaking into the supply of jumpers I was sure I wouldn’t need, I set off for the last, fairly short part of my journey.

Two hours later I was basking in 26 degrees! and enjoying this view from my bedroom door! Wow! To say I feel lucky is an understatement. This lovely place will be my base for the next 5 weeks, while I care for a beautiful ginger cat, just like Cedric. I am certain I won’t run short of inspiration!

Beautiful Château de Chenonceau!

Nothing prepares you for the magnificence of this beautiful Chateau. From the tree lined avenue approach, to the majestic sight of its white turrets and stone arches standing over the River Cher. The Château is much smaller than many, and has an intimacy about it, so that you can almost imagine living there. Cosy is not the right word, but it has the feel of a home rather than a monument. It has a marvellous history of strong and powerful women, most notably Catherine de Médicis, once the Queen of France.

It was so good to come here again to refresh my memory, even if the skies were a dramatic dark grey with the occasional shower! I have taken lots of notes and photographs, as Chateau de Chenonceau will appear in some scenes in Windsong, the sequel to Parisian Legacy!

On my way to France!

Not looking like this probably, but you get the idea! Final packing is underway for an early departure in the morning. I’m so excited to be crossing the channel again, it has been too long! I’m taking the ferry over with my car, all the better for unrestricted luggage and all kinds of things I might need over the next 5 weeks! Tea bags were the first into the car. I never travel without them!

Last time I took the ferry I managed to trip on a raised door bar in the corridor, and before I knew it I had flown through the swing doors to the kitchen, straight into the arms of a startled chef! I’m hoping this time that the crossing will be event free!

I’m heading down to Montpellier to look after a lovely house and little cat. I have several stops planned en route, the first will be the Chateau de Chenonceau in the Loire Valley. I want to refresh my memories of this beautiful place, as it will feature in the sequel to Parisian Legacy. Stay tuned for more news over the next few days 😉

Our Magnificent Queen

This week we said our final goodbye to Queen Elizabeth II. The colourful pomp and ceremony accompanying her final journey was unlike anything this country has seen in recent history. As the bagpipes played to accompany the start of the procession, it became very emotional. It was a marvellous day to celebrate the life of a truly magnificent Queen.

Hailsham Festival

It was a real treat to join so many talented writers today at the glamorous cocktail bar that is B12 in Hailsham.

Marvellously witty poetry and prose, balanced poignant, poetic moments in the mix of readings.

I was privileged to read out my own short story submission, as well as an extract from Parisian Legacy to an appreciative audience.