Jennifer Gilby Roberts

Women's Fiction/Chick Lit Author

What I’ve Read This Summer

This was written as a guest post for The Book Corner.

Unlike last time, this year I actually got some reading done on holiday. It was so worth paying the extra money for a hotel with a creche. They also had a great playground for Toddler to run around in and get nicely tired out. My Kindle didn’t even wilt in the heat. So, I managed to attack my rather mixed TBR list. Shame I didn’t have it with me when I got locked in the toilet.

christmas-beach-cafeThe obvious first choice for your summer holiday is a Christmas book. Specifically, Christmas at the Beach Café by Lucy Diamond. I confess I was reading it as research for a Christmas story of my own and chose it because the reviews said it really captured the Christmas spirit. And it did, even in Mallorca in July, although I suspect I would have enjoyed it a lot more if I’d read the novel that came before it. I think I’ll read it again in December.

Georgiana Darcy's DiaryThen I went for something different: Georgiana Darcy’s Diary by Anna Elliott. This is a sequel, of a sort, to Pride & Prejudice, but focusing on the minor characters of Georgiana Darcy, Colonel Fitzwilliam and Anne de Bourgh. I’d term it a coming of age story, because it’s really about Georgiana and Anne exercising their “girl power” and going after what they want. I really enjoyed it, plus it was free on Amazon. I think it’s permafree, actually, so I’d recommend getting that one.

Cover-SolicitingfromHome-3d-2-e1400770943412I moved from that to Soliciting from Home: 1970s memories of an English country lawyer by Melanie Russell (told you my TBR was varied!). I’ve got quite into memoirs in recent years – mainly those by nurses and midwives. (NB if you haven’t read Call the Midwife and the follow-ups by Jennifer Worth – do. They go way beyond the TV show.) This one will appeal to you if you like a cozy mystery or tales of working motherhood. It started a little slow and I felt the author included a bit more legal detail than was really needed (it made sense to me because I used to work as a legal secretary, but I suspect it wouldn’t to most people), but the stories made it worth reading none the less.

pink wellies flat capsThe final book I’ll mention is Pink Wellies and Flat Caps by Lynda Renham. I first noticed her name in the “also-boughts” on my author page and I downloaded her free book Confessions of a Chocoholic, which was very funny. Pink Wellies was very enjoyable too. My only criticism is that it got a bit too serious towards the end and there wasn’t enough story after that to fully restore the light-hearted tone. I’ll try another of her books and see if that’s the case in all of them.

So, no additions to my all-time favourites list, but some very enjoyable stories. And who knows what the rest of the summer will bring?

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Welcome to #sunathon…

Blogger Emma Louise is organising a readathon this summer. Although it’s aimed at book bloggers, it’s open to everyone. So if you’ve got a pile of books you want to read, make a date with sunathon.

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Amazon for Readers

Here are a few Amazon programmes you may not be aware of:

Prime
Anyone signed up to Amazon Prime can borrow one Kindle book a month for free.  Not all books are available – they have to be in a programme called KDP Select.  Free trials of Prime are available.  There’s no return date on the book, but you have to return it before you can borrow another.

Apparently, to search the available books you need to use the keywords ‘prime eligible‘ in your search.  I’ve tried it and it seems to work, but I can’t guarantee it’s bringing up every book.

At the moment, The Dr Pepper Prophecies, After Wimbledon and Early Daze are all available for Prime borrowing.

Lending
Anyone (not just Prime members) can lend a Kindle book they have bought to a friend free of charge for 14 days (so long as the book’s publisher has allowed this option).  They don’t need a Kindle to borrow it, just a Kindle app.

All my works are available for lending.

Matchbook
If you’ve bought a paperback version of a book, you may be able to get the Kindle version for cheap or free.  “Matchbook” is quite a new programme and only available in the US at the moment (boo).  Membership is optional, so not all books are part of it, but it’s always worth checking.

TDPP, After Wimbledon and Early Daze are all part of Matchbook.

AmazonCart
A new addition, AmazonCart is fatal to all bookaholics active on Twitter.  Basically, when you see a tweet about a book you want to read that includes an Amazon link, if you reply to it with #AmazonCart (#AmazonBasket in the UK), the book gets added to your cart/basket on Amazon.  First, you need to link your Twitter account to Amazon.  Probably one to avoid if you’re trying to cut down on your spending.

Goodreads
You can now add your Amazon book purchases direct to Goodreads.  The button is on your Goodreads home page.

Have I missed anything good?  Leave a comment and let me know.

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Chick Lit for Chocoholics

Part of the TDPP anniversary celebrations.  Posted at Best Chick Lit.

Mel in The Dr Pepper Prophecies is a raging chocoholic. So, I thought I would look around for other chick lit books where chocolate plays a starring role. Here’s what I found:

Unknown-383 The Chocolate Thief by Laura Florand

Chocolate lovers club The Chocolate Lovers’ Club by Carole Matthews

Chocolate lovers diet The Chocolate Lovers’ Diet by Carole Matthews

The chocolate run The Chocolate Run by Dorothy Koomson

Loveliest Chocolate Shop   The Loveliest Chocolate Shop in Paris by Jenny Colgan

I’ve created lists of these on Amazon.com, Amazon.co.uk and Goodreads.

I can’t believe these are the only books out there.  I found quite a number of romances and mysteries, but few that were pure chick lit.  Does anyone have some good ones to add?

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Where to Find Free Kindle Books UK

A while back, I did a post on 50 Places to Find Free Kindle Books.  The trouble is, a lot of the sites that alert you to Amazon freebies only provide links to the US Kindle Store, which isn’t much help if you’re from the UK.  So, here is a supplemental list of those sites which provide UK links.

Complete Amazon.co.uk free list

Custom search of the UK free store (great tool if you want to use keywords)

UK Sites

Ereader IQ UK

Indie Book Bargains

Ebook Deal of the Day UK

Hundred Zeros UK

Kind of Book

Free Book Sifter UK

Daily Free Books UK

Multi-Region Sites

eReader Utopia

Flurries of Words

Great Book Great Deals (most books have UK links)

Free Ebooks Daily

Kindle Books & Tips (links divert to your local site)

Free Digital Reads

eBook Soda

Bookbub

Have I missed one?  Please leave a comment and let me know.

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The Pitfalls of Dismissing a Book by its Cover

A good article I came across on Twitter on the importance of not judging a book by its cover.

Having Read The Book

download1

This is SO far and away NOT a book I would usually have picked up: there is pink swirly writing and a cartoon woman winking on the cover. But Bolouri is hella funny on twitter, so I thought, what the hell! I CAN read a book with pink swirly writing and a cartoon woman winking on the cover. So I paid my electronic money and downloaded it.

Ever since I discovered Adrian Mole I have been a sucker for calendar based writing, so once I saw “Saturday January 1st” introducing the first page, I was in.

Phoebe Henderson is a woman scorned, still reeling from discovering her ex in bed with another women she is seeing in a new year in a mess. Stuck in a job she hates, with no new relationship, and nothing else on the horizon to keep her chin up (other than being totally happy for…

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Do You Use Wattpad?

Wattpad is a place where writers can post their work for free and readers can read it – also for free.  It’s basically fanfiction.net for original fiction.  And like ff.net, there’s dross.  But there is also free content from top authors – including works in progress offered for comment.  So it’s worth checking out.

And, of course, if you fancy writing something but don’t feel ready to get into self-publishing, you can always post your own work up there.  You might even find yourself with a fan base.

Wattpad have their own Wattpad for Dummies (I hate that series name – not knowing how to do something does not make you a dummy) starter guide, although you may have to sign up to read it.

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Have You Joined Goodreads?

Goodreads is a combination of an online book club and a virtual bookshelf where you can keep track of and discuss what you’ve read and what you want to read.  Also, they do giveaways (including pre-release books by major publishers).  I’ll give you a heads up that I have a giveaway booked for paperback copies of After Wimbledon, which will probably be in April, and you’ll need to be a member to enter that.  So get a head start on the competition and join now!

Need convincing?  I could write a post about the full benefits of Goodreads, but a) I know I don’t use it to its full potential and b) Story Wrought has already done it.  So go read that.

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How to Help your Favorite Author

Love a new author. Want to help them get established? Here’s how.

Mary Fonvielle

A good friend of mine recently self published his first novel. With a good year and a bit separating our publications I’ve been able to step back and observe the similarities that arise from us indie authors who are just starting out. One thing I notice across the board is that at first we depend and thrive on the initial support we receive from friends and family. I am still blown away by the support I get from my friends, and I’m sure there are a lot of other indies who feel the same, no matter their medium. If you happen to be one of those people who has shown support for a budding indie artist, go ahead and get yourself a cookie or something because you deserve it. I’ll wait.

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10 Sites to Go to for Chick Lit Recommendations

When you want a new chick lit book to read, where do you go?  Straight to Amazon?  Or is there a book reviewer whose tastes you know are pretty close to your own?

If you’d like the latter, but don’t have one, here are some sites to check out:

  1. Best Chick Lit
  2. Chick Lit Reviews & News
  3. Chick Lit Club
  4. Chloe’s Chick Lit Reviews
  5. This Chick Reads
  6. Chick Lit Pad
  7. Fictionella
  8. Chick Lit Central
  9. Chick Lit Café
  10. I Heart Chick Lit

Twitter list

Where do you go for recommendations?

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