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The First Book Of The Year 2017

The lovey Sheila at Book Journey is on a mission to get as many pictures of books being read on 1 January 2017, so pop on over to see how many she managed to get!

The book I have chosen as the first read of the year is A Dangerous Crossing by Rachel Rhys which will be published on 23 March 2017, chosen by me for a very special reason…

The 6 March 2016 would have been my son Owen’s 22nd birthday, the day we had designated as the one where we would spread his ashes, and because the fates were determined to do their very worst, it was also Mother’s Day here in the UK. Owen’s birthday had coincided with Mother’s Day only once before, when realising Mum would do without her day, as his birthday was far more important, we exchanged cards that cold March morning with his to me saying ‘Celebrating OUR special day xx’ For the two special days to coincide this year, my first without him, seemed almost too much to bear – but as they say, the show must go on, and it did.


In memory of Owen pictured here in 2012

At the same time a group of authors were holding an auction to raise funds for CLIC Sargent, a charity that supports children and young adults from the moment of a cancer diagnosis onwards. Now we didn’t have the support of this charity, but I’m well aware of the different needs of someone Owen’s age to a cancer diagnosis. It is particularly tough that at a time when youngsters think they are invincible, that they are forced to confront something so tough.  That’s not to say we had no support, we did and all the healthcare professionals we met were exceptional, but on a small island there was no-one else Owen’s age, dealing with that kind of news, and I wish there had been something more tailored to his needs.

The closing date for the auction was, yes – 6 March 2016, and I was determined to give funds to this charity, and to do so, I had to win an auction. I entered several knowing that we would be having our special meal for Owen at the time it closed. Having eaten a lovely meal and raised my (final) Gin and Tonic, I checked the website and was thrilled to see I had won the prize I really wanted – to be named in one of Tammy Cohen’s books! When the formalities were done, she told me (I had to keep it secret) that she was writing a historical novel and she didn’t think my name would fit in that one, so did I mind waiting, I didn’t – and then she surprised me – I have a cameo role in A Dangerous Crossing under her pen name Rachel Rhys! How cool is that? She kindly sent me the proof a while ago and it was instantly reserved for this post.



It was a first class deception that would change her life forever

1939, Europe on the brink of war. Lily Shepherd leaves England on an ocean liner for Australia, escaping her life of drudgery for new horizons. She is instantly seduced by the world onboard: cocktails, black-tie balls and beautiful sunsets. Suddenly, Lily finds herself mingling with people who would otherwise never give her the time of day.

But soon she realizes her glamorous new friends are not what they seem. The rich and hedonistic Max and Eliza Campbell, mysterious and flirtatious Edward, and fascist George are all running away from tragedy and scandal even greater than her own.

By the time the ship docks, two passengers are dead, war has been declared, and life will never be the same again. Amazon

So with a huge thank you to Rachel Rhys especially for her kind words in my signed copy, and in the sincere hope that my small donation will help another young person, I’m eager to see what my cameo role is!

Now the point of Sheila’s post was to collect pictures and unhappily I’ve had a vicious virus since Christmas, so here I am hiding behind A Dangerous Crossing so not to scare you all too much. After all it is New Year’s Day not Halloween!!


What is your first read of 2017 going to be?

Wishing everyone of you much health, happiness and good books in 2017.


A book lover who clearly has issues as obsessed with crime despite leading a respectable life

111 thoughts on “The First Book Of The Year 2017

  1. When I was directed here after reading FF’s review of A Dangerous Crossing, I had no idea I was in for such a moving story. I’m so sorry to hear about your son, Cleo.
    And what a wonderful literary keepsake you have!


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