A real pleasure today to be joining the blog blitz for The Wrong Envelope by Liz Treacher: my thanks to Kelly at #LoveBooksGroupTours for inviting me to take part, and for her support with the post. This book was published in March 2018, available both for kindle and in paperback. I’m really not sure how it’s managed to escape my radar until now – very much like my kind of read, and I’m rather kicking myself that I couldn’t read it in time for the tour.
Let’s take a closer look…
Summer 1920. Two worlds are about to collide.
Evie Brunton loves her job. Twice a day, she spins along the narrow lanes of Devon on her bicycle, delivering letters from a heavy post bag. When the flamboyant London artist, Bernard Cavalier, drops like a meteor into her sleepy village, everything changes. Bernard is supposed to be painting for an important exhibition, but the countryside has its own charms, in particular his young post lady…
Light and witty, and full of twists and turns, The Wrong Envelope is a charming romantic comedy. It captures the spirit of another age – when letters could change lives.
Doesn’t that look good? Let’s try an extract – this one explores the conflicted feelings that Evie has for Bernard…
At dinner that evening, Evie struggled to do justice to her brisket and afterwards she wandered into the garden to think. Bernard was impossible, but he had prospects. Impossible-prospects, the two words melded in her mind till they became a new kind of flower, like holly-hocks. He was a man of opposites: overconfident yet vulnerable, deeply absorbed in his work one minute, flighty and distracted the next. He often acted without thinking but he was never unkind; in fact, he was very sweet and sensitive. And he seemed to like her. He seemed to like everything about her – even her mole. And he seemed to live – really live. While others tiptoed through life, he sang and swam, painted and partied. This bold approach was the bit about him that worried her the most, but it was also the bit of him she felt jealous of. She would love to stop caring so much about everything.
Evie had been brought up to care about all sorts of things, but she suspected that none of these things really mattered. They mattered when she was sat at the dining table with her parents, eating brisket; they didn’t seem to matter when she was with Bernard. In his studio, she didn’t worry so much about what other people, particularly her parents, thought about ‘all that stuff.’ Every little thing she did was done for other people, as if other people were watching, checking, nodding their approval. Instead of living her life she was acting it. Her life was a play. She had been given her lines and she had to be sure to remember them and trot them out at the appropriate moment, when it was her turn to speak. If she forgot her lines then there was a prompter, off stage, just out of view, who would hiss them to her until she picked up the thread again. If she changed the lines or missed her cue, there would be a general gasp from the audience, and the other actors in her play would glare at her as if she had betrayed them completely.
How different it was with Bernard. With Bernard she never knew what her lines should be. Anyway, he was always changing the plot – that was part of the excitement of being with him. She couldn’t fall back on well-versed patter; she had to think on her feet and she had to think for herself. He spoke to her directly and, when she was brave enough, she spoke directly back. There was muttering from the stalls – the audience never liked surprises; they liked a predictable storyline. But maybe she was learning to ignore the mutterings, or perhaps she didn’t notice them as much. Being with Bernard was a bit like being under the sea, the din of the everyday was muffled. She was swimming in inky depths and below her shone treasure. She just had to ignore the noise on the surface, dive down and touch it. She realised that if she had the courage to do this then everything would change for her. Perhaps he would give her the strength she needed?
Evie tried to remember what her life was like before Bernard arrived. She was happy enough before she met him. But now he was here, well everything was different. And he was only staying five weeks. How long had he been here already? She racked her brains. Two weeks? Three? He was almost certainly halfway through his stay. And then he would be gone. What would life be like when High View was empty again?
I really do like the look of this one – that’s another added to my kindle…!
About the author
Liz is a writer, a Creative Writing teacher and an Art photographer. She lives in the Highlands of Scotland with a view of the sea. Her love of images influences her writing.
Her debut novel, The Wrong Envelope, is a romantic comedy, set in 1920 in Devon, England. It tells the story of Bernard, an impulsive artist and Evie, his beautiful post lady. Light and witty, and full of twists and turns, The Wrong Envelope captures the spirit of another age – when letters could change lives.
The sequel, The Wrong Direction, follows Evie and Bernard to London, and charts their further adventures in Mayfair’s high society. Wild parties, flirtatious models, jealous friends – Bernard and Evie must negotiate many twists and turns if they are to hold on to each other.