We are so close now, just one week away from the launch of Kindred Spirits: Ephemera… After our jaunt on Eurostar last week, we’re at the end of our journey, in glorious Paris itself.
First though, I’m thrilled to share the first review of the collection, from Aunt Allie (not an actual aunt of mine, I hasten to add – that’s her Amazon review name!).
Here’s what she has to say:
“Every once in a while, a series comes along that makes my heart sing! Could be the plot, the characters, the writing or the gem of an idea. Sometimes everything combines together (like Kindred Spirits) and you just have a truly enjoyable mix that is a joy to read. This little series for me is perfect.
As well as being a huge Richard III fan, I’m fascinated by Charles Brandon, John of Gaunt and a host of familiar characters. I do like the full length stories but this mix of short tales is ideal to pick up after work. Thoroughly entertaining and a very enjoyable read.
Loved the big hint in the final story as to who may appear next and be it another compilation or a novel, I’ll be first in the queue to buy it – just hope we don’t have a long wait! More please…..”
Well, you can imagine how I felt when I read that first thing before work!
Honestly, reviews are so important, especially when, like with Ephemera, it’s the first time I’ve done something different, i.e. a short story collection. And that ‘big hint’ as to who may appear next? Well, you’re going to have to read it yourself to find out, aren’t you?
Back to Paris though. I’ve been visiting since childhood, as I wrote about last week, and it’s always been my foreign second-city, after glorious Edinburgh. It was where I went for my first holiday with a friend, first trip abroad with a boyfriend, and my first solo holiday overseas a couple of years later, so it holds a special place for me. I was then, very keen to explore the ghosts of the city. In Kindred Spirits: Ephemera, we have one short trip, to Pere Lachaise cemetery, where we meet the spirits of two characters I find fascinating – Abelard and Heloise. These medieval lovers were infamous for scandal at the time, and yet, both became important religious characters too, and following a bit of adventure with their bones, are now buried in a beautiful monument in the graveyard, which I visited several years back.
There are some incredibly tombs in there, but it wasn’t just Abelard and Heloise who drew my attention. How could I not be drawn to the ‘wall of ghosts’, on the outer wall? This is actually the Communards’ Wall, remembering those who were executed here, but as you can see, the way time has eroded parts of the statues which originally surrounded the formal memorial slab, it’s the most obvious nickname for the place. I found the whole site particularly moving, and knew I had to write more about it going forwards. Since I have had Mary Queen of Scots arriving in the French capital, there’s definitely scope for a whole novel set in Paris at some point. Strangely enough, I’ve already written the final scene, inspired by a moment in Les Miserables, but you’re going to have to wait for me to get through the 60,000 or so words which come before it!
Have you visited Paris? Were there any particular spots which struck you as being haunted? I’d love to hear from you…