Friday, January 10, 2020

The Thorn Girl - this is a well paced and unforgettable story

From the first sentence of this exciting psychological thriller by popular author, Laura Elliot, my interest was caught and held. Following the rather shocking beginning with the group attack on fifteen year old Marianne, the action swiftly moves forward 25 years. There it takes up the story of Adele. Clearing out the attic on the death of her grandmother, she is looking forward to flying off to a new life in Colorado with her fiancé when, amongst the cobwebs and clutter, she comes across a diary, written by the young mother she never knew. Reading the scribbled entries she is swept into a conspiracy of betrayal, brutality and corruption. She sets off down the country to Reedstown, allowing nothing, not even her love for her fiancé and their shared plans, get in the way of uncovering the closely guarded secret, buried all this time. Giving the excuse of writing a documentary, Adele meets lies, hostility and resistance everywhere she turns. As she gets pulled deeper into the intrigue and suspicion surrounding her teenage mother's attack, she begins to suspect the identity of the three men responsible. Gradually she comes to know more about her grandmother who had naively committed her pregnant young mother to the questionable care of the Thorn Mother and Baby Home in Inisada, and carried the truth with her to the grave. Before long, Adele's rented house is broken into and she is menaced by a group of young people wearing masks. Terrified by the ordeal, she comes to realise her own life is in danger and the people responsible for the coverup of her young mother's brutal attack, will stop at nothing to conceal the truth. The gripping story, related so movingly by Marianne in the diary and Adele's driven search for answers in her uneasy encounters with the evasive Reedstown inhabitants, remain in your mind long after the final page. This is a well paced and unforgettable book. Highly recommended.

Friday, October 26, 2018

'Holding Pattern' out now in paperback on Amazon.

The good news is Holding Pattern, my new Irish airline novel, is out now in ebooks and paperback. It can be got from Amazon and my first review has been posted by Tulip on

This reviewer notes that it is set in the 70's and early eighties and the novel starts with the crash of a passenger jet in the jungle of Ceylon. Air hostess Kay believes her lover married pilot Graham dead and marries a friend.  However, he is held hostage by a local mercenary group and returns to Ireland  after a few years to find his wife remarried and his lover married with a baby.

She likes the many details and airline characters. For someone born in 1968, it was like revisiting things of her past , the watching of a video of a wedding with  a whole group in pre Facebook days, the renting of a video in a shop, the discrimination of married women on a job, child custody given to one parent after a divorce, the not attending a wedding due to being in mourning. It is also the days before AIDS with pilots and crew merrily frolicking during layovers in New York'

She adds, 'In my line of work I saw the last Tamil refugees-waves applying for asylum. It was interesting to read about the start of that conflict.'  With a discussion started in Goodreads maybe others will join in and give their views.  Could prove to be very engaging.

Friday, October 12, 2018

Holding Pattern my airline novel.

Yesterday was the big day, the day my airline novel Holding Pattern went online. It was for sale on Amazon as well as many other outlets. Not everyone has gone digital and emails are coming in with the vital question. 'When will it be available in paperback?'

Just finished reading the proofs so should know soon.  Rough estimate 2/3 weeks   Will be sure and let you know.

Monday, September 17, 2018

Holding Pattern will be online end of Septermber.

I didn't realise when preparing to convert my novel to digital I wasn't allowed to include the link to my Amazon page.  No, really. It seems other distributing outlets don't like it, consider it a downright unfair disadvantage.  Not to me, of course, but well, I can see their point now.  So won't do it anymore. Promise!
 Not when it's stopping my book from going online for another whole fortnight.   

The paperbacks will be a little later but I expected that.

Saturday, September 8, 2018

My new airline book Holding Pattern

Holding Pattern will be online middle of September, in paperback by end of the month. Available from Amazon. Married on  the rebound, air hostess Kay Martin, is shocked to discover her former lover, Captain Graham Pender, believed dead in a Colombo Air crash some years earlier, is alive and a hostage in the Ceylonese jungle. After being rescued, Graham returns to Ireland and flying, and meets up again with Kay.  In the aftermath of a foiled hijacked flight out of JFK to Cuba passions run high in the Miami hotel. But their love affair and Graham's career end abruptly when he is forced to return to Colombo  to face terrorist charges and Kay's world crumbles about her on finding herself pregnant with his child.

Monday, December 4, 2017

Freebie time again Short Story Collection The Straw Hat.

With Christmas coming close - twenty days to go - you might like a few Christmas stories to read on your Kindle over the festive season. The Straw Hat  can be downloaded for free from my Amazon page between 7th to 11th December .This week in fact.
 Sister Enda's Lamb started out as a BBC Morning Story, before being published in various magazines. From the eye view of well-behaved Maria who has high hopes her tiny woolly lamb will make it to the top of the crib steps by Christmas. Certainly, if Sister Enda has anything to do with it she will, but sadly, Sister Healy takes over the Montessori class and, alas, Maria will never be her favourite. Home for Christmas is about a pilot on reserve whose wife is very upset when he is stuck on a flight to New York over the Christmas period. It looks like he will be sharing Christmas turkey with his crew when, in flight, a fire breaks out in an engine and they are forced to turn back for home. The Usual Arrangement  got a repeat on BBC Christmas Day and tells of Mrs Mooney's anxiety as she waits for her son Patrick to call and take her out to spend Christmas at his house. But he is late and she is convinced he has forgotten all about her and not coming.Not so, but the imagination is cruel and unforgiving and she experiences a lot of emotions before he arrives flushed and contrite, full of Christmas cheer.  There are another seventeen stories to enjoy, some with a rural flavour.

Sunday, May 28, 2017

#poweredByindie Day four of free download Up Up and Away

So it's the fourth day of the free download of Up Up and Away. Few know this book started off with the working title of Standby For Take-off. Tomorrow will be the last day to get it for free on Amazon. A humorous, sometimes wry look from the inside of Celtic Airways, a thriving Irish airline. Romantic too depending how you feel about an air hostess madly in love with a four gold striper, married pilot. Don't miss it. Sequel coming online soon.

Thursday, May 25, 2017

#poweredByindie - Today's the day free download of Up Up and Away

Today you can download for free Up Up and Away on Amazon.  Offer lasts until Monday, another five days to go. Get it, read it and enjoy this tale of an Irish airline and the pilots and air hostesses, their loves, lives, thrills and spills of flying and romancing.

Monday, May 22, 2017

Free Download from Amazon 'Up Up and Away'

So here goes. Kicking off Amazon promotion on my first airline novel Up Up and Away on Thursday 25th May with five days of freebies. Set in the 1960's it will give you an idea of what it was to work for an Irish airline in those years.  Quote from fellow air hostess on reading it. 'I don't remember it being so much fun back then'  In retrospect we did have a lot of fun. Read
for free and tell me if you agree.  Maybe write a review. Enjoy!

Monday, May 15, 2017

Maya Angelou a remarkable Black woman, her autobiography a must read.

When I saw a documentary made by the BBC I was filled with admiration for Maya Angelou and immediately wanted to read more about this remarkable Black woman. I started with her autobiography 'I Know Why The Caged Bird Sings' As it happened, I had the book already on my shelves having picked it up in Oxfam, along with two others, some years ago. What a treat was in store. 

From the start her resilience impressed me, her originality, her style and most of all her big heart and her determination to succeed in a world where to be Black was to be already judged and found wanting. Nothing fazed her despite the hardship of being abandoned by her separated parents at the age of three and sent to Arkansas by train with her four year old brother, Bailey, to live with her paternal grandmother. She remembered their name tags attached to their wrists and the train tickets pinned to the inside pocket of her brother's jacket. 

Touching are her memories of that poverty stricken childhood and her fast held belief that inside she was really a blonde, pink-cheeked little white girl and it was only a matter of time before this would be revealed to all about her. She was an avid reader with an inquiring mind and high grades soon passing out the other school children. She grew to love poetry and to write it. She was fortunate to have a stalwart, principled grandmother who brought Bailey and herself up strictly but with an abiding love and understanding and taught them how to hold up their heads and be proud of who they were. There was a school teacher in the town of Stamps who saw Maya's potential and befriended her, particularly in the traumatic years following her rape at the age of seven by her mother's lover when brought home to live in St. Louis with her mother. 

After this terrible experience Maya didn't speak for five years. Her kindly insightful teacher persuaded her to believe that until she spoke poetry aloud and let it sound on her tongue and pass her lips she would not move forward in her life. Fortunately, Maya triumphed over the poverty and prejudice of her existence and in her lifetime wrote two collections of prose and many books of poetry most evocative is entitled 'And Still I Rise.'. which summed up her valiant courageous spirit. Famous her historic poem 'On The Pulse Of Morning' written for President Clinton's inauguration. She had a life-time appointment as Reynolds Professor of American Studies at Wake Forest University of North Carolina. Not a woman who will ever by forgotten nor her wonderful prose and poetry.

#poweredByindie Another week to go.

Another week to go before my first airline novel Up Up and Away is available for free downloading on Amazon. Just awaiting confirmation that Thursday 25th May is the kick-off date. Anyone interested has five days to get it for free! Set in the 1960's against the glamorous background of an Irish airline when overnights and sun holidays were a big part part of being aircrew, it gives a humorous, sometimes wry, look at the loves and jealousies of the hostess section and the tensions on the other side of the cockpit door

Tuesday, May 9, 2017

Two weeks to go then free download Up Up and Away.

Just to let you know the moment is coming when my first airline novel will be available for downloading for free. Will confirm the date later. This is the cover for eBooks edition. When the paperback was coming out the publisher gathered together 'bits and pieces' of uniform. Grey jackets and flat airline hats. From where I don't know but even before I had signed a contract -  I had already read and rejected three - he staged a photo shoot with models and one four gold striper captain and, in spite of myself, I was excited.

When it came to the present eBook edition I gave the designer a line about the air hostesses and pilots having 'their heads and hearts in the clouds,' and viewing the result one amused friend remarked, 'Yeah, this lot look like they are ready to party once they land.' So they are too. It's a fun read, a  sometimes wry look at an Irish airline, the loves and lives of pilots and air hostesses. Take time and enjoy!

Wednesday, April 5, 2017

Review by Meg of Up Up and Away-

on March 31, 2017
Format: Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase

Up Up and Away
by Nesta Tuomey

As I read Ms. Tuomey’s’s novel Up Up and Away, I was
captivated by Kay Martin, the Irish protagonist (heroine), in the story.
Kay is lovely, young, and winsome. Her only ambition in life is to become an
Air Hostess for Celtic Airlines. The story is doubly intriguing since
I was the same age as Kay living in the turbulent times of the mid-1960’s.
Ms. Tuomey paints convincing images of the cultural and historical
period during which Kay lives. In the same way, Kay’s emotional and
moral struggle with her impassioned love for Captain Graham
Pender causes real conflict within herself and the reader.
Personally, I didn’t know whether to cheer Kay on or counsel
Ms. Tuomey takes the reader into the bewitching but provocative
world of Irish Airlines to view the rivalry between young
Air Hostesses struggling for independence and competition
in a world fraught with changes. As for the character
of each Airline Captain , I give you leave to draw your own
conclusions. It isn’t quite the undertaking one may imagine. Think
conquest, sex, and infidelity.
A delicious must read.

South Carolina

Wednesday, March 22, 2017

#poweredByindie Enrolling another book on the Amazon program

Following the success of Like One of the Family enrolled in the Amazon exclusive program in December and kicking off on 1st December with five days of freebies, my thanks to all who downloaded copies. Just to let you know I propose to enrol another of my books shortly. Up Up and Away is all about the loves and lives of pilots and air hostesses in an Irish airline and two aircrew in particular: one is married and mature. the other young and free to love but as Pascal says more eloquently -  the heart has its reasons of which reason has no part. Keep you posted!

Thursday, February 23, 2017

#poweredByindie Review of Kate O'Brien's The Land of Spices

I read The Land of Spices over twenty years ago and immediately became a fan of Kate O'Brien's books. Recently I was drawn to read it again and enjoyed it even better the second time around. Once again I was filled with admiration for her style, her beautiful, evocative writing, erudite and dramatic, the depth of her character portrayal, the tautness of the story. Set in an Irish convent school the two main characters are the highly intelligent Reverend Mother Marie-Helene Archer, a rather lonely introspective figure who is daunted by the Irish environment, so rustic and unsophisticated, very different to her cultivated English background. Through her letters to her superior in Belgium we learn that although challenged by it, she is not satisfied with her task as convent head and wishes to be recalled. But when six year old Anna Murphy comes as a boarder to the school because of the unsettled atmosphere at home between her parents, her father who drinks too much and has a roving eye, her mother who thinks it best for her child to go to the nuns who educated her and with whom she has kept in close contact since her schooldays, Reverend Marie-Helene changes her mind, thrust into a protective role towards Anna with whom she identifies, reminded of herself at that age. The child has the same gift for remembering and reciting poetry, the same quest for knowledge. She recalls her own childhood with her erudite father who had early on mapped out a career for her, a college education followed by a brilliant career. At eighteen Helen Archer witnesses a traumatic incident only gradually revealed and it changes the course of her life, causing her to enter the religious order against her father's wishes. As a result the relationship between them is never the same. Mere Marie-Helene has a great influence on Anna's life and supports her against the bias of some of the nuns who, in the name of character building, wish to make humble and submissive the bright, intelligent little girl, as well as the cruel snobbish attitude of one or two of the wealthier pupils who have heard the rumours of her parents' breakup. But most of all Helen Archer influences Anna in her choice of an academic career, encouraging her in face of her grandmother's opposition, for this proud wealthy old lady holds the old fashioned belief that it is only men who should continue on to higher education and a woman's place is in the home as wife and mother. An erudite and compelling book. Now that I am reacquainted with Kate O'Brien I hope to reread more of her work; in particular my favourite set in Spain, Mary Lavelle.

Wednesday, February 22, 2017

#poweredByindie Just when I thought I had made a breakthrough..

Just when I thought I had made progress I took two steps back. I am referring to blog sharing on Google+. Tonight is one night I was convinced that I wouldn't be up until the small hours trying to solve the problem and all because I managed to write and share a blog with Google+ without having the blown up profile photo dominating the post.

How did this happen?

Well, for the first time when I hovered over the enlarged profile photo I got the option of a clicking on a lefthand arrow which returned me to the blog. When saved it was sans photo. Next time out, however, I couldn't share the blog at all so this one is in the nature of a test.

There is a saying beware of getting what you ask for. Maybe I should have left well alone!

Tuesday, February 21, 2017

#poweredByindieThe malice of inanimate objects

I think it was Evelyn Waugh who said something about 'the malice of inanimate objects' I think he was talking about such things like the sweeping brush lying in wait for you on the floor which you step on by accident and it leaps up and bashes you on the nose.

 One of the worst incidents I ever heard was about the man who went up the ladder to knock a nail into the wooden beam and when it wasn't in the right place and he needed to take it out again, he slapped the wood in his frustration hoping to loosen it and it flew right back at him and embedded itself in his brain. Sadly, with fatal consequences. Minor irritations would be energetically brushing sand from the car seat and being almost blinded in the process or when the toggle on your overcoat gets caught on the door handle firmly yanking you back and making you drop the tray you carry.

What is bugging me at the moment is my profile photo which has somehow blown itself up to full size and appears embarrassingly in addition to my thumbnail photo as a background to all my shared blogs. How it came to do this I don't know only that I've wasted too much time on it already.

Seeking help from Google+ I was directed to Blogger Forum Help by an agent who shall be nameless and when not having solved my problem I turned back to Google+ for assistance encountered this same person again who this time sent me a message asking me how much money was it worth to me to rectify the fault, this was followed promptly by an appearance on screen of the smiling would-be assistant himself who declared that he was now free to personally deal with my problem, estimating upwards of £30 for a successful outcome and a variety of credit cards for ease of payment. At which point I exited the conversation.

Thursday, February 16, 2017

The story of four sisters and much more

The Lost Sister Laura ElliotThe Lost Sister by Laura Elliot
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

The Lost Sister caught and held me right from the beginning. So much so, having finished this remarkable book, travelled so far with the Lambert sisters since the time of their parents death in a car accident until they set out together some twenty years later to journey to New Zealand for their youngest sister's wedding, I must confess to feeling acutely lonely for them all. Rebecca, Julie and Lauren have not heard from Cathy, since she ran away from home aged fifteen. When they receive a phone call from her asking them to attend her wedding in New Zealand they are unable to refuse this olive branch and, with mixed feelings,decide to go. So many questions need answering, so many personal issues to settle.
Beautifully written with a wonderful mix of poetry, music and depth of feeling the author brings us back in time using the medium of letters from the eight year old Cathy to her dead parents - touchingly addressed to Nirvana - which allow the reader come to know the child and her older sisters,the terrible loss and upheaval they experience in the aftermath of the tragedy.
Rebecca, the eldest, takes responsibility for her younger sisters' welfare even though her actions and decisions sometimes made her unpopular with them. On arriving in New Zealand this role is still hers as she makes them keep to their tight schedule while covering huge distances of this immense country packed into the cramped quarters of a camper van. They combine travel with sightseeing and we come to know not only about the Lambert sisters and the tensions between them with past hurts and grievances sometimes bubbling to the surface, but the spectacular landscape and the fascinating ethnic lore. But this is a close loving family who have shared a lot and survived in a fashion. The darkness of the past, with its secrets and betrayal, while always in the background there, nevertheless, exists great affection between them. There are funny moments bonding them even closer - like urging each other to go with the flow and discard their bras following the example of travellers before them and to tie their bras to a fence festooned with garments of every size and colour.. Bikers arrive on the scene and Julie and Lauren rush to take cover behind the camper van. Rebecca, the only clothed one, draws the men off and makes them tea in the camper. When her sisters finally emerge they take it in good part. There are even romantic encounters on this journey that might result in worthwhile relationships and time for the sisters to explore their strengths and weaknesses and face up to certain issues. When the sisters finally reunite with Cathy at Havenswalk old memories are painfully revived and searing self-knowledge experienced. As the drama unfolds, the past revisited and painful issues faced there is the hope of better, happier times and more honest relationships between them in the future. Very enjoyable book. Highly recommend.

View all my reviews

Wednesday, February 15, 2017

#poweredByindie The best thing about my Ipad

How do I love my Ipad. Let me count the ways.

There are so many. The neat look of it, the ease of carrying it about, not to mention the long battery life. But without a doubt what I like best is reading Kindle books when tucked up warm in bed, these times the best place for catching up on my reading.

I have come to appreciate this particular pleasure all the more since losing the facility a few weeks ago because of an error in my Ipad to do with the email and password used for setting it up some years ago and recently changed. Many frustrating hours trying to puzzle it out, seeking help from Amazon through my Author Central Page and making at least ten changes of AppleID password all became clear at last.

It came down to the cloud setting and by exiting all devices managed to regain my sanity and my reinstalled Kindle. The downside was the loss of all my purchased books, many still unread.

So what about all those people almost religiously clinging to their print books, enthusing about the smell and feel of them. Well,  I suppose they have a point. But better than anything to my mind is that bright screen, the ability to increase the font size - no need for glasses - and the way each new page jumps to attention when, anxious to get on with the story, you lazily swipe it.

Okay, so there's no new book smell but that's a small price to pay.

Thursday, February 9, 2017

#poweredByindie Makeover for writers.

Chatting with a writer friend recently she told me that someone she knew was getting a new knee. 'I wish I could get a new me,' she added wistfully. She's not the only one I suspect when the years have taken their toll on ageing limbs and dulled the faculties.

Whatever about new body parts writers can start over it seems, reinvent themselves by using a new author name and republishing their books online with new covers and even new titles. Only the plot remains the same but, if altering details here and there suited their purpose hey, that too can suffer a change into something rich and strange.

There are advantages, of course, to presenting yourself as a brand new author. You gain a new readership and another chance to draw attention to your books published a decade or two before. But what about giving up your name that has stood you in good stead for so long?  It must be like relinquishing your identity. and the actual rewrite of your novels a form of forgery.

 It makes you wonder if it's worth it all, running the risk of losing your former hard-earned readership. The thing is you won't know, will you, until you have taken the plunge and tried it  Last word those writers who have taken that step tell me they are very pleased with the way their writing career has taken off second time around, some have been launched in America and their readership is growing fast.  And they are making money. In this regard no doubt Dr Johnson would heartily approve having had very decided views on the subject..