A New Cover For ‘1962: A Nostalgic Tale of 1960s Lancashire’ (the relaunch!)

I had a great time writing ‘1962: A Nostalgic Tale of 1960s Lancashire’  which I published in 2017. I had an even better time revisiting the book and have relaunched it this week with a new cover. Later, there will also be a collection of four short stories I wrote at the time, all set in 1962.  😊 My dad provided inspiration for this novel. He was a cycling enthusiast, entered races (and won), and he was in his late 20s in 1962 – so the characters were not based on him, or his life story. He just gave me the idea. In 2012, we were watching a programme that marked 50 years since the Cuban Missile Crisis. Dad turned to me and said ‘You know, people were petrified that we would all be blown up, but I just wanted to get a good time in the time trial race I had entered on Sunday.’ This conversation sparked something in me, and the book was born!  Dad helped me with a bit of research, including asking everyone he knew if they remembered how they felt about the looming threat of nuclear war in 1962 – as a person living in the north of England. Interestingly, Mum said she hardly remembered anything about it! 

I have been lucky enough to join a book promotion called ‘Soulful Reads’ which runs from June 19 to July 19. Well worth a nosy, I’ve had a preview of the titles – some will definitely end up on my reading list. 

Click this link : https://books.bookfunnel.com/soulfulreads/t6p3xc0jiz to check out the Soulful Reads promotion.

I will be releasing the prequel to 1962: A Nostalgic Tale of 1960s Lancashire later this year.

The Queen’s Speech (and other shorts from 1962) is a collection of four short stories I wrote in 2017 when I was researching the novel. I think this prequel will get readers in the mood for reading about 1962.

Photo by Mike on Pexels.com

Unfortunately, there are no MINI’s in the short story collection, just one in the novel.

Happy reading everyone, have a great weekend, Samantha 🙂

I’m Back! (and other mini-dramas)

I haven’t blogged for a while, or participated (properly) with social media. It’s all been for a good cause – I concentrated all of my energies on my BA (Honours) English Literature and Creative Writing degree, of which I have now completed the first half of my third year.

I used to be able to do more – either my MS is getting worse, I’m getting older, or the course is getting more demanding. Probably mostly the latter but also (probably) a combination of the three.

I have still been reading for fun, of course but all the other things (book promotions, reviews, adverts) have had to take a back seat.

I plan to use my summer to write my next standalone novel – I am too anxious to reveal the title today, although I’m not sure why.

First, I plan to relaunch my 2017 novel ‘1962 (an uplifting tale of 1960s Lancashire)

You know, someone hurt my feelings about this cover earlier this year and I could really have done without it. There’s a long story behind the cover, my dad didn’t want his face on the cover (!) and the person I gave the photograph to to draw a picture from didn’t illustrate an image of the bike. Amazon KDP were not happy with the original cover (too blurry) until eventually I was forced to change it. The cover you see above is aiming to be an old Penguin.

Postcards From Penguin: 100 Book Jackets in One Box: Amazon.co.uk: Penguin  Group USA: 8601404201011: Books

Anyway, I plan to change the cover when I relaunch.

One advantage of being an indie author is that I can make these kind of decisions and change things whenever I fancy it. (Although it doesn’t provide protection from busybodies)

Thank you for understanding, I hope everyone has a fabulous summer, Samantha 🙂

PS I wrote these!

A Touch of #History For You ~ Sharing #BookReviews for 1962 (An Uplifting Tale of 1960s Lancashire) @BookFunnel Promotion

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One of my books 1962 (An Uplifting Tale of 1960s Lancashire) is participating in a Book Funnel Promotion There are some really great books on offer (I have read three now) so, if you enjoy novels written with a historical flair, then have a look at the offer and see if there is anything you fancy.

Let me show you a few of the covers and blurb before I tell you about my book.

Rosemary for Remembrance by Nikki Broadwell

Rosemary and Dylan have grown apart since his return from WW2 and prison camp. But when memories from a bygone era begin to haunt them, they are drawn together to discover the source. The key could be the locket that Dylan found in an antique store that bears Rosemary’s initials. ‘Together Forever’ are the words inscribed there, and somehow the daguerreotype portraits seem familiar.

Can the mysteries of the past have an effect on the present? Find out in this gripping tale of love, loss, and secrets revealed.

Based on the wartime diaries of the author’s father.

Click here for details of how to buy this book (it’s on offer)

Book Cover

Abducted as children.

Sold into new lives…

Brother and sister struggle…

Nat is a slave. Ziva is a beloved daughter, purchased to replace a lost child. Her despicable master lusts for her. Her rejection sets off a devastating chain of events that could send Nat to the mines and ruin her adopted father.

Can they avoid the trap?

Will Ziva escape the clutches of the wicked master?

First in the series, Lost Children of the Prophet tells an ancient tale set in the earliest biblical times, following events in Ancient Matriarchs book three. Follow the danger and intrigue of a brother and sister who fight for each other. Available on Kindle Unlimited.

Get it now

A Ring of Truth by Michelle Cox

In this SECOND book of the series, Henrietta and Clive delightfully rewrite Pride and Prejudice—with a hint of mystery!

Newly engaged, Clive and Henrietta now begin the difficult task of meeting each other’s family. “Difficult” because Clive has neglected to tell Henrietta that he is in fact the heir to the Howard estate and fortune, and Henrietta has just discovered that her mother has been hiding secrets about her past as well. When Clive brings Henrietta to the family estate to meet his parents, they are less than enthused about his impoverished intended. Left alone in this extravagant new world when Clive returns to the city, Henrietta finds herself more at home with the servants than his family, much to the disapproval of Mrs. Howard—and soon gets caught up in the disappearance of an elderly servant’s ring, not realizing that in doing so she has become part of a bigger, darker plot.

As Clive and Henrietta attempt to discover the truth in the two very different worlds unraveling around them, they both begin to wonder: Are they meant for each other after all?

Buy it here

1962 (An Uplifting Tale of 1960s Lancashire) by Samantha Henthorn

‘A warm, humane, affectionate, finely-observed tale of a teenage boy, his family, friends and Lancastrian community, set in the sixties against the chilling backdrop of the Cold War and Cuban Missile Crisis’ – Kindle customer.

‘1962 has a playful concept that places one young boy’s dreams in a troubling time. There is a sense of fun with Ernest’s unstoppable optimism.’ Rocliffe

Ernest Bradshaw lives in a two up two down with his mother, Rose and Uncle Billy. They go to church every Sunday, along with most other people in the village. While Rose is praying for peace, Ernest is hoping for two things; that he can run away from the school bullies, and that his mother doesn’t notice the hole in his sock. Ernest’s Auntie Marigold and Uncle Norman live in a bay-fronted detached house, and despite their seemingly perfect life, they too have seen the news and are petrified about events thousands of miles away in Cuba.
With school teachers getting carried away about the Cuban Missile Crisis and Rose having a mini-drama at work, Uncle Norman steps in to solve problems at home and introduces Ernest to a cycling club he has seen advertised in Bolton. Here Ernest meets Christopher and Janet, his new friends, and Mr and Mrs Towers – club leaders. Can Ernest get enough money together to buy himself a racing cycle and win a cycling trophy before the world ends?
An uplifting, heartwarming coming of age, family story with all the nostalgia and charm of 1960s Lancashire.

Get it here

Here are some reviews for 1962 (An Uplifting Tale of 1960s Lancashire) :

A thoughtful, engaging insight into the world of a 15 year old boy and his cycling ambition. I couldn’t put it down as I was introduced to a wonderful array of characters. Such a unique read. Clever and quirky. Look forward to reading more from this author.

This story carries the echoes of the era that seem quite prescient for today.

A warm, humane, affectionate, finely-observed tale of a teenage boy, his family, friends and Lancastrian community, set in the sixties against the chill backdrop of the Cold War and Cuban Missile Crisis.

Light and gentle, this is a nostalgic book that doesn’t worry too much about tense action or vivid drama, but instead relies on the reader’s desire to be swept back in time to a real place. I found this book easy to read, if a little slow, but kind of like a really comfortable old sweater: warm, cozy, a little out of date, but just what you need to escape real-world brutalism. A decent novel!

After the Clarion Palmer Trophy May 1953

^ My dad is holding the bicycle in this photo – he inspired me to write the book and gave me the 1960s research.

 

 

 

1962 (An Uplifting Tale of 1960s Lancashire)

To celebrate almost two years since the publication of my first full-length novel, it has had a bit of a polish, a new cover and the addition of a subtitle.

The book is a 20th century historical fiction about Ernest, who dreams of becoming the next cycling champion to hail from 1960s Lancashire. But his mother is petrified by the events in the news, will he win the race before the world blows up?

It is available to download here US  here UK

Here’s a snippet:

Later that same day, when the Sunday roast had been cleared away, and hours had passed with nothing to do and nothing to say. Ernest, his mother and Uncle Billy took the weekly bus journey to Auntie Marigold and Uncle Norman’s house.

     Marigold Bradshaw was always going to do well for herself in life. This was obvious on the Bradshaw family photograph, captured in sepia when Marigold was fourteen and Rose was nine. Marigold, imposing and impressive on the back row, shoulders straight, hair behaving itself, brand new dress. The centre of the photograph, the centre of attention, her proudly positioned head articulated ‘I plan to marry well’. Marigold stood above her little sister: Rose, who was perched upon a three-legged stool underneath Marigold. Head bowed, small and shy with her hair in her eyes, and a hand me down dress. Rose had no plan, but in life, received a surprise. Marigold pitied her little sister, but it was not her job to pass judgement; not on a Sunday.

Happy reading, Samantha xx

Don’t forget it’s on Kindle Unlimited!

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“I’m putting my foot down Brenda, I’m not parting with it!” Brian and Brenda Towers stood face to face in their lean-to shed. Not by choice, there was little room, especially for both of them to be in there, nose to nose, stomach to stomach.
“Brian!” Barked Brenda “That Pre-war contraption has not seen the light of day since… since… PRE-WAR!”
This was true, the New Hudson bicycle lay cluttering up the final few feet of Brian and Brenda’s lean-to shed. Gathering dust and rust like aphids feeding off a rose bush. The tandem and their newer individual bicycles plus Brenda’s gardening paraphernalia also created chaos and clutter. Brenda did not like this, it made her feel as though her house was about to fall down. If only everything could be tidy, all at once, organised and compartmentalised like the rest of her life. Brian did not see it this way.
“What if it comes in handy one day?” Brian pleaded.
“It has! Today is its lucky day! Young Ernest Bradshaw is crying out for a bicycle to race on, you said so yourself, I heard you and Sid whispering behind his back don’t forget!”
“I’m not a flaming charity, Brenda! That cycle cost me… it cost me… err”
“You can’t remember, can you? It was that long ago… you miserly old buzzard Brian Towers!”

Read 1962 on Kindle Unlimited here

Happy reading, Samantha

 

1962 an uplifting read.

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Later that same day, when the Sunday roast had been cleared away, and hours had passed with nothing to do and nothing to say. Ernest, his mother and Uncle Billy took the weekly bus journey to Auntie Marigold and Uncle Norman’s house.
Marigold Bradshaw was always going to do well for herself in life. This was obvious on the Bradshaw family photograph, captured in sepia when Marigold was fourteen and Rose was nine. Marigold, imposing and impressive on the back row, shoulders straight, hair behaving itself, brand new dress. The centre of the photograph, the centre of attention, her proudly positioned head articulated ‘I plan to marry well’. Marigold stood above her little sister : Rose, perched upon a three-legged stool underneath Marigold. Head bowed, small and shy with her hair in her eyes, and a hand me down dress. Rose had no plan, but in life, received a surprise. Marigold pitied her little sister, but it was not her job to pass judgement; not on a Sunday.

Available UK here

Available US here

1962 Kindle Countdown deal

Marigold Bradshaw was always going to do well for herself in life. This was obvious on the Bradshaw family photograph, captured in sepia when Marigold was fourteen and Rose was age nine. Marigold, imposing and impressive on the back row, shoulders straight, hair behaving itself, brand new dress. The centre of the photograph, the centre of attention, her proudly positioned head articulated ‘I plan to marry well’. Marigold stood above her little sister Rose, perched upon a three-legged stool underneath Marigold. Head bowed, small and shy with her hair in her eyes, and a hand me down dress. Rose had no plan, but in life, received a surprise. Marigold pitied her little sister, but it was not her job to pass judgement; not on a Sunday.

Above is a snippet from chapter one about Ernest’s mother and Auntie Marigold. 1962 is Ernest’s story, he has ambition to become the next cycling champion to hail from 1960s Lancashire… Trouble is, it’s 1962- nuclear war is in the news and his mother is petrified. I hope you will join Ernest in this journey story, especially whilst it is on special offer!https://www.amazon.co.uk/dp/B074P5TNTJ

 

 

Chapter 7 of ‘1962’: The Queen’s Speech

pexels-photo-221166.jpegOn this day in 1962, Her Majesty The Queen, Elizabeth II was preparing to read written words out loud in front of a moving camera. These words formed a speech, drafted by civil servants employed in the utmost, highest positions of the British central government war defence headquarters. Words of an imagined text, envisaging the possibility of war.

Her Majesty The Queen, Elizabeth II executes a busy schedule. Each morning, afternoon and evening are filled by the Lord Great Chamberlain with official engagements. Officiously organised by five departments of the royal household, and safely delivered by the Earl Marshal. State ceremonies and so on, the 1962 calendar never emptied.
Recording a speech is an unusual request from the ministry of defence. Nevertheless, it had been pencilled in by the royal private secretary’s office. Decisions had been made; what would Her Majesty The Queen, Elizabeth II wear? Decisions had been made regarding the location of the filming. Decisions had been made about the safe keeping of the speech; would it be sent to 10 Downing Street? Or straight to The National Archive?
This was an unusual state of affairs because the request for Her Majesty’s time had been processed, but the final decision about whether to record the speech or not was undecided. This was most unusual. The decision lay with two men, the Prime Minister and the Secretary Of State For Defence.
What was more unusual, this secret speech, not intended for immediate public broadcast was to be the subject of a secret decision. Even though there had been multiple quandaries about the speech and it’s filming, the final decision was :
‘the speech is to be axed!’
The request cancelled, and the Queen’s time about to be wasted. There ensued a catastrophe of excitement at Buckingham Palace. No living person at the palace could recall any such disruption to the Queen’s official diary. Another decision followed. Who was going to tell Her Majesty that her morning was about to be ruined? That the speech was redundant? That Her Majesty’s time was about to be wasted?
Straws were drawn over bated breath… there was not a member of the royal household that did not idolise Her Majesty The Queen. They would rather kill themselves than spoil her day. To each and every person in the royal household, Her Majesty The Queen Elizabeth II was their Queen.
Gazing through the window with mournful reminiscence, Queen Elizabeth II thought she could see two cyclists in the distance. Remembrances of her father, King George VI brightened by wonderings about the Olympics. Will they ever be hosted in London again? She sighed a secret sigh to herself, whilst turned away from the court.
Arnold Smyth age twenty, footman and trainee butler of Buckingham Palace had drawn the short straw. A decision had been made that he was the one to deliver the news, thus spoiling Her Majesty’s day.
The note from the Prime Minister, Harold Macmillan had been placed by gloved fingers upon a silver tray. Arnold approached the Queen, and, still in training knelt before her. Bemused at Arnold’s formality, Queen Elizabeth II took the letter and her spectacles (only worn for reading) and skimmed the Prime Minister’s words. Arnold Smyth the trainee footman anticipated the royal look of disdain; instead, he saw beautiful red lipstick lips impulse a small smile. Placing the note back onto the silver tray, Queen Elizabeth II turned to Arnold the trainee footman :
“Thank you, young man, you have just made my day”

 

A chapter from my book ‘1962’, Happy reading! Samantha

Officially a Holiday Read

cropped-20180401_120047.jpgEleven books read during my holiday, reviews to follow…  1962, my book worked it’s way around the pool too! No internet during my holiday, which I got used to after about half a day (or was it half an hour!). Normal service of liking and commenting should return this week.

Happy reading! Samantha