15 February 2017

Ros Rendle's Flowers Of Flanders is this week's Book Revisited

Please welcome Ros Rendle to The Heart of Romance's Books Revisited today.

Flowers of Flanders


About the book
A malicious lie between rival sisters changed lives. Which sister does Michael need to  survive?
Set just before and during WW1 this book is a commemoration of both the living and the dead and those who fought so bravery. While it’s not their story my grandparents were the inspiration for the book and it’s my Granny’s picture of the front cover.
I’ve been told the research ‘is impeccable’ which is so important for the setting to enhance the story but it’s ultimately a feelgood read about both men and women surviving intolerable times with dignity

Shortly to be published is a novella to complete the two older sisters’ story and a sequel will be coming soon set in Vichy France in 1940. A third book, set during the Cold War will follow.
Extract:~
Early summer 1912 – A town near Manchester, England
 
Rose’s heart was singing with the joy of the sun and the birds and the glossy, bright leaves above her head. She and her two younger sisters strolled home along the lane when the peace was shattered by a lot of clattering and shouting.
“What on earth is that noise?” She stopped to listen.
 Izzy, only twelve years old, grabbed Rose’s arm and whispered, “I don’t like it, Rose. What should we do? It may not be safe to venture further.”
“Oh don’t be such a wet, Iris,” Delphi said, using her given name as she often did. She tossed her head.
Rose, who always maintained the peace, answered her youngest sister, “Don’t worry Izzy, it’s probably the boys playing rowdy games.”
“I don’t think…” Delphi’s words were interrupted.
There was an ear-splitting bellow and then, “Bloody hell, Crispin.” It was a deep male sound.
Rose, certain she recognised the voice, felt her stomach churn and her heart beat faster. She had known Michael nearly all her life and loved him for almost as long.
The older girls looked at each other with widening eyes and ran. Izzy followed. Their steps were short and quick; long, narrow skirts hindered their progress. They didn’t have far to go round the corner of the lane when through the trees their fourteen-year old brother, Hector, came bounding.
Seeing his sisters he called out, “That stupid fellow Crispin has walloped Michael good and proper. We were play-acting but he’s done it now.”
“What do you mean?” wailed Izzy.
Delphi ran ahead. She held onto her hat with one hand.
“These wretched skirts,” Rose heard her say to no-one in particular as she hitched them up. “It’s alright for you Hector,” she called as he disappeared through the trees ahead of her. Rose knew that as the most active sister, it was frustrating for Delphi to endure her skirts. Many times she had said it was so much easier for men.
There were shouts at the hapless Crispin as she arrived.
Rose came with Izzy through the trees that bordered the lane. Her gaze, generally gentle and myopic, took in the situation and she looked on in horror. The sun through the branches slapped the group with searing tiger stripes. Michael stood with head bowed. The deep gash on his forehead was a slash of vermillion vividness which dripped unheeded; a violent splash on his shirt, so white. A long log of wood lay at his feet and three other lads stood and looked aghast but clueless.
Delphi’s voice rose as she berated them all for their stupidity but Crispin, as the main culprit, received her full wrath.
“You’re fighting with sticks! What on earth for?” Delphi demanded. “Hector you should know better,” she continued, looking at her brother who had got back to the scene of the crime ahead of her. With the full force of her words again upon Crispin she added, “That’s a dirty great log. It’s not even a stick, you dolt.”
Rose saw Crispin regard Delphi. She recognised the look he gave, admiring her beautiful face with its prominent high cheekbones. Rose felt a pang of envy. Everyone looked at Delphi that way including Michael. At that moment, though, Delphi was frowning yet it still didn’t detract from her exotic looks. Her lovely dark eyes, so often dancing with fire lights glared at the culprit.
 

About the author:~

Having worked as a Headteacher, Ros has been used to writing policy documents, essays and stories to which young children enjoyed listening. Now she has taken up the much greater challenge of writing fiction for adults. She writes both historical sagas and contemporary romance; perfect for lying by a warm summer pool or curling up with on a cosy sofa. Her books are thoroughly and accurately researched. This is her third book.

Ros is a member of the Romantic Novelists' Association and the Historical Novelists' Society.

Praise for Flowers of Flanders
An industry professional: I like the idea of setting these successive stories against the backdrops of the great conflicts of their ages, and in the strong family you have created an interesting web of family relations with some vibrant and interesting characters. You have also done a huge amount of research to anchor it in the era. There were several tear-jerking moments, and it is fascinating also to have a more female, familial perspective on the events of the Great War, as you do in Flowers of Flanders.
An Amazon customer: A thoroughly good read which held me gripped right up to the end. The characters are well drawn and the descriptions of the trenches.
Samben: An engaging and heart-warming story set before and during the First World War. Ros Rendle has captured the era beautifully and has vividly portrayed the lives of people who endured such turbulent times.

 

1 comment:

Rosalind Rendle said...

Thanks for the opportunity and I hope your readers like a great #feelgood read for St Valentine's week.