OUT NOW: The Dance of Love by Angela Young

The Dance of LoveAngela Young is a graduate of Middlesex University’s MA in Creative Writing and her first novel, Speaking of Love, was published in 2008. The Dance of Love is her second novel. Angela lives and writes in south-west London.

The Dance of Love

The Dance of Love is a coming-of-age tale that
spans more than two decades of vast change.

Against a backdrop of high Edwardian luxury, Natalie Edwardes is poised on the brink of adulthood and, in an age when a woman’s destiny is decided by marriage, her beauty, wit and money would seem to guarantee her a glittering future. But, isolated by her father’s position as a self-made man, Natalie has never felt at ease in a society bound by a maze of conventions. Heart, for her, will always rule head, and so it seems that an encounter with a dashing yet gentle artist-soldier contains all the seeds of her life’s happiness.

The dance of Natalie’s life whirls her from the glittering ballrooms of London and the grand houses of Scotland and Devon, to the Scottish Highlands. But the strictures of polite society are far-reaching and Natalie’s happiness is abruptly snatched away. She is forced to compromise her romantic ideals and it is only when the tragedy of the Titanic touches
her life, years later, that she discovers what love really means and the heartrending choices it poses.

Buy your copy of The Dance of Love here

Angela Young Discusses the Titanic Struggle Behind The Dance of Love

The Dance of Love Angela YoungAngela Young is a graduate of Middlesex University’s MA in Creative Writing and is the author of two novels. In 1995, BBC Books published Angela’s 30,000-word ending to Edith Wharton’s last, unfinished novel, The Buccaneers, a story of love and marriage set among the British aristocracy and the American moneyed classes in late nineteenth-century England.

Speaking of Love is Angela’s first novel. It follows the relationship of a mother and daughter and what happens when people find it difficult to say the things that matter the most. It’s also a novel about hope and the restoration of trust and has been described as ‘beautifully written’ by Joanna Lumley, and ‘suffused with a love of storytelling and a warmth that makes it a pleasure to read’ by the Daily Mail.

Angela’s second novel, The Dance of Love, is a coming-of-age tale set in the same era as Downton Abbey. It spans two decades (1899-1919) of vast historical change and, through the joys and disappointments of its heroine, the beautiful, wealthy but independently minded Natalie Edwardes, it reveals the many faces of love.

Combining fact and fiction in THE DANCE of LOVE

When my agent, Heather Holden-Brown, suggested I write a novel about an ancestor of mine who survived the sinking of the Titanic, I enthusiastically agreed. I researched the era and, of course, the Titanic,but the writing proved difficult.

You’d think, wouldn’t you, that a character who was a wife and a mother, a daughter and a friend and a survivor of the Titanic, would provide the beating heart of a tragic, page-turning story. But, in my hands, she didn’t.

I tried different narrators. I tried beginning in the middle and at the end. I tried a modern frame story. I tried parallel stories. I began work in 2008 but by 2012 – the 100th anniversary of the tragic sinking – I still hadn’t written a story with a proper beating heart. By that time I’d worked with two editors, and with Heather, and they’d done their best to help me find the heart of the story. I’m sure other writers would’ve succeeded: the editors asked searching questions and made excellent suggestions. But I hadn’t succeeded so I sent the manuscript to The Literacy Consultancy and, in August 2012, Melissa Marshall wrote this:

At [the novel’s] heart is a complicated love story. But then it steers hugely off course with the Titanic episode. This is a massive story in itself and rather dilutes the impact, importance and credence of the main storyline, which is the story of unrequited love … . I would urge you to consider removing [the Titanic episode] from this story.

You’d think I’d cry when I read that, but I didn’t. I laughed with relief and recognition. I’d been trying to combine fact and fiction without realising – this is my first historical novel – that the two must be seamlessly interwoven and there must be synergy between them. I’d been trying to find a reason for my protagonist to board Titanic (my ancestor’s reason was quite mundane) rather than asking how the tragedy might affect the course of her life.

So … I made the Titanic story serve the complicated loved story (instead of dominating it) and when I realised my protagonist would make a brave and heart-rending decision as a direct result of the sinking (not as a result of being on board herself) I knew I’d found the heart of the story.

I’m delighted Buried River Press are publishing THE DANCE of LOVE on 31st July.

– Angela Young

[This piece first appeared, in a longer version, on Shiny New Books BookBuzz]

For more info, check out www.angela-young.co.uk

Carole Llewellyn Launches ‘For the Love of Catherine’ in Devon

Carole Llewellyn was born in Bridgend, South Wales and previously worked in PR and in the theatre before becoming a successful businesswoman. She has written a variety of short stories for national magazines and newspapers including The Daily Telegraph and Woman’s Weekly and is now a full-time writer. Her previous novels, Megan and Rhiannon were also published by Robert Hale Ltd.

Here’s what happened when Llewellyn’s new book For the Love of Catherine was launched at the Torbay Book Shop in Paignton, Devon on 4th April:

My book launch party, held by Matthew Clarke at The Torbay Bookshop, Devon (one of the top independent booksellers), was a resounding success. All were invited to meet me for a glass of wine and a chat. The turn out surpassed all my expectations. The atmosphere in shop was buzzing and my pen was kept busy. A great night! A big thank you to all those who attended.

Carole Llewellwyn

Carole Llewellyn is currently working on her next novel WOMEN OF STRAW

For the Love of Catherine by Carole LlewellynFOR THE LOVE OF CATHERINE OFFICIAL PLOT – SYNOPSIS

14th APRIL, 1912.

RMS Titanic Struck by an Iceberg!

In the chaos of the sinking ship, Mair Parsons is separated from her infant daughter, Catherine, and her travelling companion and future mother-in-law, Ethel Jenkins, the kind woman who has tried to compensate Mair for the mother’s love she has never known.

The disaster changes all their lives. During her repatriation to Britain Mair has time to reassess her life and knows that before she can find true happiness she must find out the truth about her absent mother, even if it means leaving her beloved Wales and the fiancé and family who care for her.

Her search takes her to London where she becomes a Nightingale Nurse at St Thomas’s hospital and meets the exciting doctor, Andrew Baxter. With new love and a new career, can she be truly happy? Or will her heart be forever bound to those she loves in Wales?

OUT FRIDAY: For the Love of Catherine by Carole Llewellyn

For the Love of Catherine is out this Friday and is available now for pre-order with a 30% discount for a limited time only.

Praise for the author:

‘I was sorry when the last page had turned’  –  Myshelf.com

‘It is difficult to put down…a book well worth reading’  –  Red Roses for Authors

Here is the official plot:

For the Love of Catherine by Carole LlewellynFOR THE LOVE OF CATHERINE OFFICIAL PLOT – SYNOPSIS

14th  APRIL, 1912.

RMS Titanic Struck by an Iceberg!

In the chaos of the sinking ship, Mair Parsons is separated from her infant daughter, Catherine, and her travelling companion and future mother-in-law, Ethel Jenkins, the kind woman who has tried to compensate Mair for the mother’s love she has never known.

The disaster changes all their lives. During her repatriation to Britain Mair has time to reassess her life and knows that before she can find true happiness she must find out the truth about her absent mother, even if it means leaving her beloved Wales and the fiancé and family who care for her.

Her search takes her to London where she becomes a Nightingale Nurse at St Thomas’s hospital and meets the exciting doctor, Andrew Baxter. With new love and a new career, can she be truly happy? Or will her heart be forever bound to those she loves in Wales?