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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

The Innkeeper’s Sister
A Tale for the Time Being


Monday, October 17th, 2011

ladybird_2I started out the week asking questions. (I was searching for a new oven)  I just wanted to know especially what other people thought. I hungered for the conversation and the thrill of the reply.

My book group was so excited about not having to pay for books and how to get everything for free and, and how the Library in Seattle was doing all sorts of audio books for free downloads.   I asked them how they thought the authors would get paid?  Would the authors still want to write for us to read if they could not make a living?

Marketing and value were the main words of their reply.  “I do pay for my books because I pay my taxes for the streets, schools, buildings and books within.”

I went back to the internet and wandered through all the free words and giveaways, clicking bravely on every link that I saw.

I found visual beauty.

I found the art of listening.

I found the understanding of staying young.

I found new thoughts about money and worth.

And the Rooster crowing.

I found beauty. The Feynman Series  Beauty  Part I

and then came full circle to the celebration of exploring curiosity.

The Feynman Series  Part III Curiosity

( Where I found the last two videos, and this post included lots more amazing links: Sightline  Writer’s recommendations)

Do you get curioser and curioser as you explore?

I would love to find and read your comments.

If you liked what you read here you might also enjoy my other sites  Biking Architect and Wise Ears.

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Related Reading:
Second Thursday Teaser Post
The Art of Racing in the Rain
The Social Animal
You Are Not Your Brain

Four Great Books to Add to Your Reading List

Thursday, May 12th, 2011
Book at the Beach

Book at the Beach

Here are some great reads that I wanted to share with you because I enjoyed them.  None of these books are on easy topics, but they are all valuable story lines and explore the concept of children experiencing trauma.

1.     The Girl Who Fell From The Sky by Heidi W. Durrow  Based on the author’s own  adapting to prejudice towards being a biracial individual as she relocated  to the United States.  The author premised the book around an incident she read in the newspaper soon after she arrived in the USA.  A gentle story of a young girl figuring out who to be after the death of her mother. Appropriate for young adult readers.

2.    ROOM by Emma Donoghue  This story is told by a five year old boy about how he experiences his life and his mother’s role in keeping him healthy and strong in the worst of circumstances.  I thought I did not want to read this story, but then Delia of RealDelia http://realdelia.com/
described it as a WOW and the next thing I knew I was hooked.  Very well written book – I would not recommend this book to my children – it is adult reading.

3.     Imperfect Birds by Anne Lamott    I read everything Lamott writes and I use her How to Write Book as my writing guide – Bird by Bird. This story does not disappoint and it was hard to put down and go do something else.   This is a contemporary story about how dabbling in drugs helps to mask a teen’s emotions and confusions; those experiences which can enable them to mature and problem-solve. The story is told both by the mother and the daughter as they push against each other and sort out how best to encourage their growth.  Lamott’s ability to create the web of lies involved in covering up is just wonderful, and I wish I had read this story when I had an omitting teenager in my daily life.  The cues and words are all right there as a parental guide book for those with “good, smart kids.”

4.   Apologia to My Second Child by John Hodgman – you know the PC guy on all those funny ads and often a commenter on The Daily Show.   This is an essay from Psychology Today, that made me laugh and brought me to tears as he shares with his yet to be born male offspring.  It is pure pleasure to read – just a joy to discover.

Feel free to share this list by using  the share buttons.

I did not receive any copies of these books and was not asked or paid to review them. If you order these books and purchase new books from Amazon, I will receive a few beans in my bucket.

What are you reading these days?   Have you discovered any of these books already?  What did you think?    Let me know your thought about Hodgman’s essay – please.

I would like to just add that I do not review, recommend, or write about books that I do not like or did not find some level of enjoyment – I have made 2 exceptions.

Related Reading:
American Wife
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The Highest Tide
The Help

In a gentle way – Inspiring Myself

Monday, April 11th, 2011


I have a hand woven flour storage basket.  It has never held flour of any kind, rather I keep it on my desk and undo the hook and latch to drop quotes in that I find pleasing.  When I need a bit of a push with my thinking, I open the lid and reach within and pull out slips of paper.

Yesterday, I played in the sunshine all day.  After 60 days of straight rain, we had a wonderful day of sunshine.  I did not write, instead I walked and greeted my many neighbors who were out and about.  I weeded and puttered in the garden and I just enjoyed the stunning beauty of the sky.

Today the next storm is fast approaching and the wind is picking up; the clouds have gone from white puffy to gray and now with charcoal out over the water soon to be stuck on the mountains as a downpour. I feel cold and I want to eat and break my fast.   Walking, prayers, meditations, laundry, even errands are completed and now soup is simmering on the stove.  Hammer and saw work on the garden beds to prepare for the season ahead and I find I am in need of a shove to get going on these words.

I opened my basket and randomly pulled out 10 slips of paper and here is what I discovered:

7 quotes from Gandhi:
1.    In a gentle way, you can shake the world.
2.    First they ignore you, then they laugh at you, then they fight you, then you win.
3.    An error does not become truth by reason of multiplied propagation, nor does truth become error because nobody sees it.
4.    A man is but the product of his thoughts what he thinks, he becomes.
5.    You must be the change you wish to see in the world.
6.    We must become the change we want to see in the world.
7.    We do not need to proselytize either by our speech or by our writing. We can only do so really with our lives. Let our lives be open books for all to study.

1 Quote from Martin Luther King, Jr.
Our lives begin to end the day we become silent about things that matter.

1 Idea from Einstein
The important thing is to not stop questioning; curiosity has its own reason for existing.

And 1 Exercise from Steve Pavlina, I had just placed in the basket this week:
…sit down with a piece of paper, ask yourself what your life purpose is, and keep writing down answers until you come to the one that makes you cry.

I was filled up and ready to go and my mind was in full swing and thinking.  It is a rather magic basket.

One of my daughters keeps a journal of quotes that inspire her.  She keeps them in a rather neat order and within categories.   I kind of like my random jumble.  Do you keep quotes that inspire you?  Orderly or jumbled?  Nature inspires me and relaxes me too; sometimes I just get too relaxed in the great outdoors!

I was even inspired by getting so many quotes from people who practice nonviolence and were concerned with justice.  What do you think about this random selection, I would like to know what motivates you and inspires good thinking and encourages your actions?

A reminder:  there are two book” give aways” happening on Patricia’s Wisdom right now:

April 22, 2011 will be the drawing for a copy of the book THE LONG GOODBYE – all you need to do is be from the USA or Canada and leave a comment.

April 28, 2011 The author of the book THE PROCRASTINATION EQUATION is giving away a copy to the best procrastination story or anti-procrastination technique from the comments section.

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