Friday, January 05, 2007

Early morning surprise...

The boyf gets up stupidly early for work every day and this morning I couldn't get back to sleep, so I got up at 6.45am and decided to get some words in early. Of course, I wrote about a sentence and then decided to reward myself with some surfing. Checked out the new Richard and Judy Book Club list (which looks fantastic - last year, I only really fancied The Island, but this year there are so many titles I would love to read, especially Half a Yellow Sun).

Fridays are The Independent's book review days - they have a little supplement. They very rarely review chick lit (well, very few national newspapers do - and frequently only feature the stuff to have a go at falling moral standards, appalling writing, the depraved nature of modern publishing etc.), but they have good profiles which I like reading. So imagine my surprise - and, my anticipated horror - when I saw Brown Owl's Guide to Life listed under the Paperback section.

I was sure I knew what was coming. It was BOUND to be evil: an excuse to lay into vapid female writers etc etc. But, like picking a scab, I had to have a peep. And this is what it said:

Brown Owl's Guide to Life, by Kate Harrison (ORION £6.99 (408pp)
The 35-year-old heroine of Kate Harrison's spirited third novel is used to being bossed around. For the first 18 years of her life it was her mother, a Brown Owl, who ruled the roost, and now her husband Andrew ("the civil service equivalent of Mr Universe") dictates the pattern of her life. Following her mother's death, Lucy reconvenes the Pixie troop of her childhood, and finds that the Brownie Handbook is the self-help manual she's always been searching for. A larky and undemanding tale of mid-life redemption that leaves even the most organised Girl Guide unprepared. (Emma Hagestadt)

Now, OK, maybe 'undemanding' is not a word to have me singing in the rain, but the rest of it is a good summary of the book and I very much like 'spirited' and 'larky' - and the tiny quotation gives a good flavour of my style. And I can't even quibble with undemanding, as when I checked my 'Fog Index' statistics on (can't find them now, they've disappeared), it made it crystal clear that my vocab and sentence structure wouldn't tax a bright nine-year-old. But I don't think you need complex language to say what you want to say.

Anyhow, it's just nice to have a review, and one by someone who seems to have found the book entertaining - which is precisely what I'm aiming for. So thank you, Emma (never met her, by the way).

Back to the words...


Blogger Jane Henry said...

Hey Kate, way to go girl!!!
That's wonderful.

Must email you and find out
a) how to sublink on my blog or whatever it is I'm supposed to be doing.

b) how to add that word counter thingy.

Don't think I'll be counting any words just yet, as am still sorting the plot out in my head. But after a sleepless night I just thought of a BRILLIANT beginning. So may write that next week and sod how disorganised/unresearched I am.

Of course, by next week my brilliant beginning will seem like a pile of...

I nearly bought Brown Owl yesterday as kids' were spending Christmas money and the oldest wanted to go into Ottakers to buy a book. Was planning to follow her with the rest, but she was too quick for me!

Will get it soon I promise...

love Jane/Juliax

11:00 am  
Blogger liz fenwick said...

Great review :-)



11:17 am  
Anonymous Jessica said...

ooh that's excellent. Well done!

11:30 am  
Blogger Hera said...

Oh that just reeks of fabulous!
And am I too late to join the race? Say it ain't so. I haven't felt this motivated since searching for the last fudge quality street Chrimbo Eve. V. inspiring. Ta!

12:54 pm  
Blogger Cathy said...

Congratulations on the great review! Have just started it myself and can agree with the reviewers opinion....

3:29 pm  
Blogger Bernardine Kennedy said...

I will join the race, I really will but right now the copy-edits of 'Past Chances' are delaying me and also I have to figure out how to do links and things.
I need an experienced blogger at my elbow! Help.....

7:35 pm  
Blogger Caroline said...

Great start to the year.

8:18 pm  
Anonymous Keris said...

Congrats on such a great review and I'm even more desperate to read Brown Owl now (it's 7th in the review queue ...). Not only was I a Pixie (seconder) I adored the Handbook and was only thinking the other day (whilst watching that programme about Scouts) that I should look for one on ebay. Thanks for reminding me!

2:16 pm  
Blogger Hannah's Pet Hamster said...

Ooh yes, that's good. Hurrah!

10:19 pm  

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