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Eleni, the young Greek bride’s first Christmas in Cheshire.

Excerpt from GREEK LETTERS VOLUME 2 It was with this marriage and Christmas that the family and their new mother began to bond together. Eleni Carr loved the tale, told by her husband, about how th…

Source: Eleni, the young Greek bride’s first Christmas in Cheshire.

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“Pavlov’s First Christmas” brief extract from THE PUPPY WHO DIDN’T LIKE RAIN

I was born when the nights get dark very early; later the Persons tell me I was born on Halloween. I am very young when the Persons start talking about Christmas. These days-with-names seem to matt…

Source: “Pavlov’s First Christmas” brief extract from THE PUPPY WHO DIDN’T LIKE RAIN

“Pavlov’s First Christmas” brief extract from THE PUPPY WHO DIDN’T LIKE RAIN

I was born when the nights get dark very early; later the Persons tell me I was born on Halloween.

I am very young when the Persons start talking about Christmas. These days-with-names seem to matter to the Persons. They are always talking about Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday, or perhaps Sunday. Sunday seems very special, they all sit round a big long table and eat a lot of food, which always smells so good. I don’t know why they don’t give me any.

To be honest Christmas seems to get in the way of everything including me getting my ‘puppy sleep’. The Persons are so busy, rushing around, talking in a very excited way and wrapping everything up in coloured paper. But I am only eight weeks old at this stage so my story is going back a bit.

Then they bring a very long stick thing into the house. It has lots of other sticks sticking out of it. It’s the kind of thing I see outside covered in green spikey things. And the Persons bring it inside, with great difficulty, and some very loud voices. Uncle Olly holds it still while Gran-Daddy Person makes sure it stops wobbling. Then they rush about covering it with twinkly coloured things. Suddenly they press a switch and all the twinkly things light up and pretty sounds of music can be heard. It is beautiful and I want to look at it closely. But when I run up to it, all the Persons stop what they are doing and rush to pick me up. “No Pavlov, no, you must not go near the Christmas tree.”

So that is a Christmas tree! “If you are a good-boy Pavlov, there will be a parcel wrapped up for you under the Christmas tree on Christmas Day. ”I don’t spend a lot of time thinking about what they are saying. I am more interested in all the cooking that Groovy Granny is doing. She is always cooking and it always smells so good. “Christmas Pudding, Mince Pies, Christmas Cake, Pavlov,” says Groovy Granny, but I don’t know what she is talking about. “You can’t eat any of the Christmas fruits, Pavlov! Grapes and raisins are very poisonous to dogs, but you might be able to have some turkey on Christmas Day.”

What does poisonous mean? These Persons they have so many long words and they expect me to understand, but I do like it when they talk to me, it is really very nice because it makes me feel included.

“Christmas is very like Sunday lunch Pavlov,” says Mummy Person. “Except we have a really big Turkey on Christmas Day, instead of a roast chicken, but I think you will like it just as much! We will give you a little because, although you can’t have chocolate or any of the sweet things, you can have turkey and carrots.”

When the big day comes, Persons are excited from the moment they wake me up. Aunty Penny Person arrives with Arthur-little-person. She is carrying Arthur-little-person in her arms. To be frank that is also where I stay for most of the day, in Mummy Person’s arms. Unless they put me into my dog-house-crate, which seems to be an awful lot of the time. There is paper and ribbons everywhere, the lights are twinkling on the long stick which is called a Christmas tree. I would love to be running around in all things over the floor.

I think Mummy Person realises this and gives me a parcel of my own. I tear off all the loose wrapping, as you do, and inside is a lovely soft ball with a squeak inside. I am going to be able to drive all the Persons mad, wag a tails! Christmas dinner is more than Kibble good! Why they only give me such a little bit is beyond me.

Buy Now: THE PUPPY WHO DIDN’T LIKE RAIN by Suzi Stembridge, drawings by Anna Falkonakis: http://amzn.to/2fCc5dG

Christmas in the Peloponnese just before the end of the Greek War of Independence.

An extract from BEFORE VOLUME 1 of the GREEK LETTERS QUARTET by Suzi Stembridge, available in paperback at Waterstones and independent booksellers and from Amazon, and e-book: As the year of 1827 d…

Source: Christmas in the Peloponnese just before the end of the Greek War of Independence.

Coming soon: THE VISCOUNTESS AND THE TEMPLARS

thegraceofironclothing

templars_promoThe third volume of my trilogy based on the life of Viscountess Ermengarde of Narbonne, THE VISCOUNTESS AND THE TEMPLARS, will soon be available through Amazon and other online booksellers. 

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THE GLASS CLASS A critique for my novel set in Calderdale, Snowdonia & Greece

Source: THE GLASS CLASS A critique for my novel set in Calderdale, Snowdonia & Greece

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BRIGHT DAFFODIL YELLOW

BRIGHT DAFFODIL YELLOW

FiVE STAR REVIEW by Robert Egby: Bright Daffodil Yellow opens with aging former airline pilot Gerald Duncan posing as a Greek Cypriot innkeeper named Stephanos in the delightful romantic harbor town of Kyrenia of the early 1970s. Colonial Cyprus has long gone and the Turkish forces have not yet arrived while Gerald is lusting after a young English girl named Maeve. From the very start the reader knows Duncan is in trouble, pursued by relatives of former loves and indeed a marriage. As the Turks invade, Duncan flees the Island and in the turmoil adopts another identity in England. One feels like laughing at this hopeless creature as he earnestly seeks the freedom of obscurity only to survive an Underground railway disaster and be thrust into the exposing spotlight of national television. Duncan’s great ambition is be a loving parent for the two sons he fathered by two different women — and stay free. It’s a wonderful but fascinating and taunting story, well written and seemingly reminiscent of Lawrence Durrell who also lived on Cyprus in another age, frequented Kyrenia (Bitter Lemons) and wrote of the loves and agonies of men and women in The Alexandria Quartet. The author’s knowledge of Cyprus and the English Lake District is highly evident, plus she has the ability to portray characters with deep meaningful words. This along with the peculiar, unpredictable and pathetic exploits of a freedom seeker keeps one turning the pages to discover this Romeo’s fate. Incidentally, his encounter with a Harley Street plastic surgeon is classic. A truly delightful saga.