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Thursday, 27 August 2015

Author Interview - Kelly Rimmer - The Secret Daughter




As I saw my new-born baby’s face for the first time I tried desperately to capture her face in my mind—to stamp it onto my eyelids. As she was taken from me I knew I might never see my daughter again.
38 years later…

‘You were adopted’. Three short words and Sabina’s life fractures. There would forever be a Before those words, and an After.

Pregnant with her own child, Sabina can’t understand how a mother could abandon her daughter, or why her parents have kept the past a secret.

Determined to find the woman who gave her away, what she discovers will change everything, not just for Sabina, but for the women who have loved her all these years.


From the bestselling author of Me Without You comes another touching, beautifully told story about the pain of separation and the enduring strength of love.
Today we are delighted to welcome Kelly Rimmer to the blog to talk about her new book 'The Secret Daughter'

Hi Kelly
Welcome to Sincerely Book Angels Blog
Thanks for inviting me by your blog!


What was the inspiration behind this novel?
I had the idea for the first scene first. Sometimes my ideas just pop out of nowhere, this was one of them!  I pictured a loving woman who finds out she’s about to become a grandmother but surprises everyone with her reaction. I also quite desperately wanted to tell the story of the terrible impact forced adoption practices had on families here in my home of Australia. Two ideas kind of collided in this story.

Did you always want to be a writer?
I did go through a brief phase in primary school when I thought I’d become prime minister one day…but even so, I thought I’d write in the evenings ;)

What other jobs have you had?
I have also been very lucky to have quite a rewarding career in IT.

How did it feel when your first novel was published?
It was something I’d imagined for such a long time, and that it has happened at all – once, let alone twice - still feels a bit surreal.

Have you ever had writer's block? If so how did you overcome it?
It happens from time to time and I do think its par for the course. I am most vulnerable to writer’s block when a motivation or direction for a character or plotline is unclear. If I know exactly what I’m writing towards, the words tend to flow pretty easily. I am slowly learning that if the words aren’t coming, it’s because the bigger picture of the story or a character’s backstory isn’t yet clear to me and I need to do more work developing my ideas.

What motivates you to keep writing?
I couldn’t stop if I tried. It’s my stress relief, my fun, my therapy and my passion.

Do your characters moods ever affect your mood and vice versa?
Absolutely. I wrote a lot of The Secret Daughter when I was travelling overseas away from my children on a business trip. I was so excited to be there and it was only a few short weeks, but I fretted terribly for my kids. I knew my family was absolutely fine – in fact, I was video-calling them twice a day! But I did let that homesickness seep into the novel, and when I read back on it now, I vividly remember times when I was putting myself in Lilly’s shoes trying to wonder how on earth I’d ever have coped our separation situation wasn’t temporary.

As a general rule, if I am feeling a particularly strong mood myself when I sit down to write, I will try to work on a scene that matches to make the most of it!!

As for the ‘vice versa’ part of your question, I am the kind of writer who will sit at the keyboard and weep for what I’m putting my characters through. I’m definitely affected by their moods. I actually miss some characters when I finish a book - I probably take their lives far too seriously!!

What three pieces of advice would you give to an aspiring writer?
1) Don’t ever think of anything you read or write as wasted effort. Every word you read and every word you write helps you to find your own voice.
2) Do expect your first draft to be rubbish. Writing and editing are two different skills – just get that god-awful first draft done and come back later with your inner-editor to polish it up.
3) Do keep some kind of ‘ideas’ notepad. I tend to have concepts pop into my head and think ‘that’s gold! I’ll never forget that!’ and within about ten minutes that particular brain cell has been repurposed for the week’s shopping list…send yourself an email, carry around a notebook, write it on your wrist – but when ‘the muse’ speaks, make sure you’re taking notes!!


Who is your favourite author and why?
There are so many great writers – please don’t make me pick just one!! I’m immediately excited if I hear about any new release from Cecilia Ahern, Diane Chamberlain, Renita D’Silva or Jodi Piccoult.  When I pick up a book – I want effortless prose, a scenario that makes me think and characters that make me feel. Those fabulous writers always deliver!

If your book was made into a film what song would you choose for the opening credits?
That’s a very hard question! I really don’t know…but I am a crazy Josh Groban fan so I’d probably try to find one of his…

Who would you choose to play your favourite character in the film of your book?
There’s an Australian actress named Melissa Bergland who I think could play Sabina. She’s quite a bit younger than Sabina is… Melissa Bergland is just an incredibly expressive actress and Sabina is a character who shows every emotion on her face – I think it would be a match made in heaven!

What is your next book about?

I’m currently working on a romance…and I mean…literally working on in the window next to this interview – and I am absolutely enthralled by these characters! I can’t wait to see where the story takes us.

Thanks for having me on your blog, Sincerely Book Angels!
It's been a pleasure, thank you for joining us.

Click here to read our review of The Secret Daughter



This Thursday (18th June) Kelly Rimmer’s The Secret Daughter is being launched into the world. A touching, beautifully told story about the pain of separation and the enduring strength of love.

The book can be pre-ordered now:

About the Author 

author kelly rimmer
Pic sourced from KellyRimmer.com

When my childhood friends grew out of make-believe games, I realised that I’d have to become a writer (or join the real world with them, but that seemed far too dull).
Several decades later, I live in rural Australia with my husband Daniel and our two young children, and when I’m not reading, writing, or daydreaming about reading and writing, I have one of those unfathomable IT jobs which no one outside of the industry really knows about.

The Secret Daughter - Kelly Rimmer


As I saw my new-born baby’s face for the first time I tried desperately to capture her face in my mind—to stamp it onto my eyelids. As she was taken from me I knew I might never see my daughter again.

38 years later…
‘You were adopted’. Three short words and Sabina’s life fractures. There would forever be a Before those words, and an After.

Pregnant with her own child, Sabina can’t understand how a mother could abandon her daughter, or why her parents have kept the past a secret.

Determined to find the woman who gave her away, what she discovers will change everything, not just for Sabina, but for the women who have loved her all these years.

From the bestselling author of Me Without You comes another touching, beautifully told story about the pain of separation and the enduring strength of love.

Author: Kelly Rimmer
Title: The Secret Daughter
Publishers: Bookouture
Publication Date: 18th June 2015
Link: Amazon

My Review

Sabina Baxter and her husband Ted couldn't be happier since finding out that they were expecting a baby. However when Sabina announces the pregnancy to her parents she doesn't get the reaction she expected and instead she receives a huge shock when her mother tells her that she was adopted. She tries to find out some more details about her real parents but her adoptive parents act very furtively and deny knowing anything. This causes Sabina a great deal of upset and frustration and the book follows her journey as she begins to unearth the secrets that have surrounded her birth.
The book also travels back in time to Lilly who is an unwed mother-to-be who has been dispatched to a home for unmarried mothers. She desperately writes letters to her boyfriend in the hope that he will rescue her and they will be able to bring up their baby.
The book describes very well the feeling of hopelessness and raw emotional pain that the young women felt, some of whom wanted to keep their babies and some who didn't. It was also very interesting to see the different points of view of the biological mother, the adoptive mother and the baby at the centre of it all. You could actually feel empathy for the adoptive parents on hearing the reasons behind their decisions but at the same time feel anger and resentment for their unforgivable actions. The biological mother's pain was palpable and the trauma she suffered was harrowing.
Although this is a work of fiction there were many forced adoptions carried out during the time mentioned which have impacted so many lives. 
I really enjoyed the book and felt immersed in the heartbreak, frustration and joy that was felt by the characters.

Sincerely
Book Angel x

About the Author

author kelly rimmer

When my childhood friends grew out of make-believe games, I realised that I’d have to become a writer (or join the real world with them, but that seemed far too dull).
Several decades later, I live in rural Australia with my husband Daniel and our two young children, and when I’m not reading, writing, or daydreaming about reading and writing, I have one of those unfathomable IT jobs which no one outside of the industry really knows about.
Click here to read a Q & A with Kelly Rimmer.

Tuesday, 25 August 2015

Out of the Darkness - Katy Hogan


Out of the Darkness is a haunting, sometimes heart-breaking, contemporary novel with a supernatural twist. A tale of friendship and redemption, of love and loss, and life after death. Set in the lively coastal town of Brighton, Out of the Darkness tells the moving story of three women, complete strangers, each burdened by their own secrets, fears and emotional baggage. Their lives are changed irrevocably when they are brought together by one remarkable connection: someone who wants to help them.....from beyond the grave.

Author: Katy Hogan
Title: Out of the Darkness
Publishers: Illumine
Publication Date: 6th July 2015
Link: Amazon

My Review

When I was asked by Katy to review this book I didn't really know what it was about but I liked the cover and the title so was happy to add it to my list of books to be read. However when I read the first line of the blurb on the back and realised it was about a girl who loses her mother then I knew I would have to bring it forward but waited until after my holiday incase it was a tearjerker.
I lost my mum four years ago and am still in disbelief and shock and so many of the feelings I've been going through were talked about and experienced by the characters in the book.

The main character, Jessica Gibson, lost her mother suddenly and as they were so close she has found life unbearably lonely as they were best friends who did everything together. She finds it especially hard on New Year's Eve which also happens to be her mum's birthday, I understood the torment of not wanting a New Year to start without your mother as it makes them seem even further away from you. A chance meeting with a guy called Finn helps her to feel slightly better for a short time and changes her life forever.
Encouraged by a friend to try grief counselling she meets Hannah at the group and also Alex who lives next door to where the group is held. Circumstances bring them together as friends and they soon become inextricably linked. Each of the friends has experienced heartbreak in one way or another and after visiting a medium they begin to receive discreet messages from beyond the grave which bring comfort to their lives. These three friends have been brought together for a reason which becomes apparent as the many twists and turns of the story unfold.
I thought that this book was beautifully written and the difficult subjects surrounding death such as grief and depression were sensitively handled. Many times whilst reading I felt my heart being pulled with emotion and I also shed lots of tears. Although filled with sadness there is a wonderful uplifting feeling of hope throughout this book and the characters are brought moments of joyful happiness.
I could really relate to what the characters were going through and have had lots of signs from my departed loved ones which I find very comforting. I also loved the support that the characters gave each other through love and friendship.
Thank you to Katy Hogan for allowing me to review this beautiful, gentle uplifting story.

To read our author interview with Katy please click here.
Sincerely
Book Angel x


About the Author

Katy Hogan


Having grown up with a mother who consulted her tarot cards on a weekly basis, and who would frequently sense an other-worldly presence, it has always been perfectly natural for me to assume that there is more to this life than meets the eye. I have even experienced a few mysterious encounters myself. But it was only when I suffered the loss of a loved one that I started to question the possibility of life after death, and decided to find out more.

And so began a fascinating quest, where I met 'ordinary' people who claimed to have experienced the extraordinary. This is where I found the inspiration for my debut novel, 'Out of the Darkness'. Although it's fiction, much of the phenomena written about in the story have been experienced by me, my friends or people I spoke to during my research.

I have started work on my second novel, but when I'm not writing, you will find me keeping tabs on my teenage children or walking my dogs in the Hertfordshire countryside.

Please see www.outofthedarknessnovel.com