Author feature (Part 1) – Anne Allen – Dangerous Waters and Finding Mother

By | August 1, 2014

I’m quite beyond any self control when it comes to downloading books to Kindle, and many of them remain unread – and probably always will, overtaken by all the latest reads that come my way.  But I’m so glad I can’t say that any more about the books of Anne Allen.  The synopsis of Dangerous Waters really attracted me – I’ve never been to Guernsey, enjoy a bit of vicarious travelling, and I liked the idea of a contemporary romance with a touch of mystery, along with some Second World War secrets. 

It proved to be a thoroughly lovely read, and you can try it yourself on Kindle with a free promotion running from 1 to 3 August.  Jeanne returns to Guernsey after a long absence to tie up the affairs of her grandmother: she has tragic memories of an accident at sea when she lost her parents, and the flashbacks still haunt her. She decides to stay in Guernsey, to take some time to rebuild her life after the end of a relationship, and starts to renovate the cottage she’s inherited. While doing so, she finds a series of letters revealing wartime secrets, and the story becomes a fascinating exploration of events that happened to ordinary people during the German occupation. The whole book balances superbly the secrets of the past with a present day thread which encompasses an unfolding romance and a gripping story. The author captures the beauty of Guernsey in her every description, and plainly knows it well. 

I really enjoyed it, and was just delighted when Anne offered me a review copy of her second novel, Finding Mother. In this one, Nicole walks away from her cheating husband and decides the time is right to find out who she really is – adopted at birth, she decides to try and find her birth mother, and the search takes her to Guernsey.  The story that unfolds spans three generations of women, with their stories of love, loss and some of the most difficult decisions possible.  The characters are really well drawn – particularly the three women at the centre of the story – and the book is perfectly paced, dealing with some challenging issues but never becoming anything other than a thoroughly enjoyable read.  

And, as with Dangerous Waters, this book has a very strong sense of place – the same vivid Guernsey settings, along with some scenes in Herm (which sounds quite beautiful – when I visit, it’ll have to be a day trip…!). One lovely touch is that Nicole is brought together at one point with the main characters from the first book – Finding Mother would be perfectly readable as a stand-alone, but there’s something rather good about finding out what happened next to characters whose company you’ve so enjoyed.

Anne’s third Guernsey novel, Guernsey Retreat, was originally due for publication on 8 August – but I’m delighted to tell you that it’s already on Amazon for Kindle and Anne tells me that the paperback will be available before the middle of August. I’ll tantalise you for now with the cover, and will be back next week to tell you more about it and share our on-line conversation. 

If you enjoy character driven stories set in lovely locations, romantic stories that dip into history, books that deal with real human and moral issues but never lose their ability to entrance and entertain, then the Guernsey novels of Anne Allen might be just what you’re looking for.

Dangerous Waters and Finding Mother are both available as paperbacks and for Kindle: their prices are always reasonable, but from 1 to 3 August, Dangerous Waters will be on a free Kindle promotion.  Why not give it a try?

Anne Allen was born in Rugby to a Welsh father and an English mother. As a result she spent many summers with her Welsh grandparents in Anglesey and learnt to love the sea. Now she is based in Devon to be near her daughter and 2 small grandchildren. Her restless spirit has meant a number of moves, the longest stay being in Guernsey for twelve years after falling in love with the island and the people. She contrived to leave one son behind to ensure a valid reason for frequent returns. Her younger son is based in London – ideal for city breaks.

By profession Anne is a psychotherapist who long had a desire to write and Dangerous Waters, her first novel,was published in 2012. It was awarded Silver (Adult Fiction) in TheWishingShelfAwards 2012. Her second, Finding Mother, was runner-up in Family Sagas in the 2013 SpaSpa Awards. The third in The Guernsey Novels series, Guernsey Retreat, will be published on 8 August.

Anne has an excellent website, and you can also find her on Twitter and Facebook.

(Other blogging friends were way ahead of me in discovering these books – there are many more reviews, interviews and features to be found, but do have a look at Jo’s review of Finding Mother and her conversation with the author on Jaffa Reads Too, and Anne’s review and interview on Random Things Through My Letter Box.)

3 thoughts on “Author feature (Part 1) – Anne Allen – Dangerous Waters and Finding Mother

  1. Anne Allen

    Anne, thanks so much for your lovely comments on my books! I went quite pink ☺ I think readers fall in love with Guernsey as much as anything, and that is part of my homage to such a beautiful island. I shall be nipping back there soon to launch Guernsey Retreat and I hope you might consider adding it to your collection of books. I look forward to our upcoming chat. Anne

  2. Anne Williams

    Thanks Anne – I'll certainly be reading Guernsey Retreat as soon as I can, and I've already been browsing travel websites for a break in Guernsey in the spring!

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