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THE GIRL IN THE RED COAT: A Review ~Kate Hamer

Monday, August 14th, 2017

I could not put THE GIRL IN THE RED COAT down; I had to read well into the night as this abduction – suspense story just held me captive.  When I did go to bed, I was still thinking about the story and how I might resolve it, as I did not skip to the end to see how it concluded.  The writing was superb and I think many, many people will want to read this story and then Hamer’s next and next and next book.

“Compulsively readable…Beautifully written and unpredictable, I had to stop myself racing to the end to find out what happened.” —Rosamund Lupton (Sister)

A smart and dreamy little girl no longer wishes to hold onto her mother’s hand at the book festival and as the fog rolls in she starts to wander into stories, that she finds under the sales table – the two are separated and a feisty man leads the child away.  The fear and sadness of the mother just filled my whole being and I was deeply hooked into story

  • An Amazon Best Book of the Year for 2016
  • Costa Book Award for First Novel finalist
  • Dagger Award finalist

As a new single parent, the mother is worried and anxious about all the responsibility and she worries that her daughter, 8-year-old Carmel, will wander off and that she will not be able to pay the bills and get all their needs manifested.  The father has a new partner and has not appeared for a long time in their lives. Carmel is trying to sort out her new life and she has a very perceptive view of the world, her mind does wander and she notices details.  They both want to figure everything out and move forward.

The book goes from Mother to daughter as the story progresses and it is fabulous how Carmel works at remembering her Mother and all the wisdom that was imparted.  Her mother’s mind is always trying to connect with where Carmel might be and they are always working on finding RED in their lives.  The police have given up the search and there is a remarkable connection, as both mother and daughter cannot totally believe the other might be dead.

I do not believe I would have chosen this book to read and then it would have been my loss for sure.  So I say thank you to TLC Book Tours for asking me to read and review this remarkable story – THE GIRL IN THE RED COAT.

About the author:

Kate Hamer’s first novel ‘The Girl in the Red Coat’ was shortlisted for The Costa First Novel Prize, the British Book industry Awards Debut Fiction Book of the Year, the John Creasy (New Blood) Dagger and the Wales Book of the Year. It was a Sunday Times bestseller and has been translated into 16 different languages. Kate won the Rhys Davies short story prize and has short stories published in a number of anthologies. She’s written articles and reviews for The Independent, The Sunday Mail and The New York Times. Kate grew up in rural Wales and now lives with her husband in Cardiff, UK.  Her second book is The Doll Funeral (PW August 21,17 review)

Kate Hamer Twitter
Kate Hamer Goodreads

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COINCIDENCE: A Novel ~J.W. Ironmonger

Tuesday, March 18th, 2014

“…not because light will fail to penetrate the darkness, but because very few will choose to look at what is revealed.”

I found COINCIDENCE to be an amazing read. Every time I was interrupted from the pages of this book, I was determined to head right back into the story as soon as possible.  I enjoyed reading this book and I think many people I know would enjoy it.  The words were dynamic and precise. I do so like to look up and study words in the dictionary to pinpoint the meaning the author was determined to reveal and this story the words were truly wonderful.

A three year old is found at a fair on the coast of England.  She knows her name and that she lives at Number 4, but #4 where?  She is not so sure.  The officer writes down Azalea Ives and the search begins for her mother who drove the child to this location; it was a long drive.   It is now 30 years later and Azalea Ives is consulting a Philosopher at the University who specializes in COINCIDENCE.  She wants to figure this out because so many amazing events have all happened on Midsummer or the 21st of June, in the 3rd year of a decade, including Azalea’s abandonment at the fair.   In the between time, Azalea has been adopted and moved to a mission in Uganda, where her adoptive family is murdered by Joseph Kony ( the real person in the story, with lots of abductions, child soldiers and sexual slaves of the LRA) on June 21st 1992, when Azalea was 13.  After a harrowing kidnapping, Azalea is adopted by two medical students to remove her back to England, and she becomes a lecturer in Literature and gains another new last name.

Is life random or determined are we predestined to have patterns and does that mean that on June 21st 2012 it will be Azalea’s turn to die?  The fascinating people along her life path assist her in finding her story and where she was born and which of the blind men claiming to be her father is the real deal.

I enjoyed the interplay and explanation of philosophy and reason, I went back and read several sections again to understand the connections and the thinking patterns, and I thought it was wonderful that the author grew up in Africa, had experienced much of the unrest and could expand my thinking about Uganda and the Sudan.  The characters who delved into religion and interpretations were fascinating and so delighted my senses and my inner dialogue. The philosophy professor tells much of the story by sharing his thinking with his academic mentor who adds a psychological dimension to the whole.

COINCIDENCE  is also a love story about fathers and mothers and a young woman who believes “that everything that happens, happens for a reason.”

This is J.W. Ironmonger’s first novel to be published in the USA and I know you will not want to miss it.

“ But the droll, sharp-witted narrator spins this tale with the lightest of touches, all the way to it’s perfect ending.  I adored this book.”
Christina Baker Kline (author of The Orphan Train)

I could not agree more COINCIDENCE has the perfect ending!

tlc logo This book was sent to me for review by TLC online Book tours and Harper Publishing.  It was a wonderful read and I am extremely grateful to have the opportunity to read this book and tell you about – COINCIDENCE

J.W. Ironmonger online

The author spent many years in East Africa and thought he would return as a zoologist after schooling in UK.  That idea was not to be, and he came back to UK with his wife who is a zoologist and he works in computers.  They have two children and his son Jon went back to explore Uganda with him as he researched the novel.  The family shares life with lots of animals.

If you purchase anything from Amazon or Powell’s  from this site, I will receive a few beans in my bucket. Donations also welcomed. Thank you.

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