Thursday, 19 January 2012

Featured Author: Chris Longmuir

A warm welcome to Chris Longmuir, who is a writer of many talents based in Scotland. I’m a big fan of Chris’s crime novels (see my previous interview with Chris) and I was intrigued to read her historical saga, A Salt Splashed Cradle, since I like her writing so much. And I love that cover!



The book did not disappoint. From the first page, the reader is transported to a Scottish fishing village in the 1830s. With a strong cast of characters, A Salt Splashed Cradle tells a fascinating tale about the detailed everyday life of the fishing community and the impact on that community by the arrival of beautiful, incomer Belle. Although married to one of the young fishermen, Belle is not immune to the attentions of the local Laird’s son. Belle is an unusually well rounded character, neither wholly good nor completely bad, and the story of her difficulties in being accepted into her new family ensures an absorbing read.

BLURB
 
A Salt Splashed Cradle


This historical saga is set in a Scottish fishing village in the 1830s and reflects the living conditions and the morals of the ordinary fisher folk of that time. The novel follows the relationships of Belle, her husband, Jimmie, her daughter Sarah, her mother-in-law, Annie, and the rest of the Watt family.

James and Annie Watt are a typical fisher family, and Annie is horrified when Jimmie, her eldest son, brings Belle to the village as his new bride. She makes her displeasure obvious to Belle who struggles to find acceptance in the village. Belle is engaged in a losing battle however, because the villagers regard her as an incomer.

Jimmie, anxious to buy his own boat, leaves the fishing village to sail with a whaling ship. The story follows him to the Arctic, and on a whale hunt, before he returns home again. Meanwhile, in his absence, Belle has fallen for the charms of Lachlan, the Laird’s son, and embarks on a tempestuous affair with him. When Jimmie returns she struggles with her feelings for him and for Lachlan.

By this time the women in the village are starting to regard Belle as a Jezebel who will tempt their men away. A mood of hysteria engulfs them and they turn against Belle, in an attempt to force her out of the village.

What will Belle do? And will she survive?

A Salt Splashed Cradle is available from Amazon (UK); Amazon (US) and Smashwords.

You can find out more about Chris on her website and blog.

Chris Longmuir won the Dundee International Book Prize in 2009 with her first crime novel. The prizewinning novel, Dead Wood, was published by Polygon and was so successful that the first print run sold out within four months. Since then Chris has published two further novels as e-books. Night Watcher, her second crime novel, was published in March 2011, and her historical saga, A Salt Splashed Cradle followed three months later. Boosted by the success of her novels, Chris delved into the depths of her computer to dig out her short stories which she published in two volumes as - Obsession & Other Stories, and Ghost Train & Other Stories.


Chris also writes short stories and historical articles for magazines which are published in the UK and the US. She is currently working on a further two crime novels. Chris is fascinated by electronic gadgets of all types and descriptions and is never happier than when experimenting with new hardware and software. She designed and put up her own website and builds computers in her spare time. She describes herself as being a bit of a techno-geek.

23 comments:

Bill Kirton said...

My reactions were the same, Rosemary. I loved the scary crime books and was nicely surprised when I read this one - not that I had any doubts about it, but it shows how flexible Chris is as a writer. The characters, the sense and feel of time and place, and the sheer 'what happens next?' factor make it a great read.

Chris Longmuir said...

Thanks for a lovely review, Rosemary, and thanks to Bill too for his lovely comment. A Salt Splashed Cradle has been more successful than I anticipated so I really must take my head out of my crime writing long enough to write the sequel.

Miriam Wakerly said...

I have not read Chris's books (not because I wouldn't choose to, but just haven't reached them yet!) but the Salt Splashed Cradle looks very enticing. The setting promises to be full of fresh air and colourful characters.

Rosemary Gemmell said...

Thanks for commenting, Bill, it's so true.

You're welcome, Chris - it's good to be so versatile!

Hello Miriam - thanks for commenting. You'll find plenty of both in the book!

Anne E. Johnson said...

Love the title, the cover, and the setting. And your review intrigued me. Guess I'd better read this one!

myra duffy said...

I really enjoyed this book. It shows that it's worth doing something different..and roll on the sequel.

Pauline Barclay said...

Chris is an amazing person and author, I only know Chris through two of groups she is invovled in, but is a great supporter to everyone. Loved the post and I will be adding her books to my TBR pile.

Debs Carr said...

Thanks for the informative review. I love discovering new books.

Joan Fleming said...

Rosemary, this is an excellent feature, highlighting how many strings Chris has to her writing bow. I have thoroughtly enjoyed reading all her books.

Rosemary Gemmell said...

Hi Anne - I'm sure Chris will be glad it caught your attention!

Absolutely, Myra!

Rosemary Gemmell said...

Hi Pauline - that's great!

Me too, Debs!

Thanks, Joan - I love her various writing too!

Sheryl said...

I love the cover too! And the blurb is excellent, sounds really fascinating. I like that Rosemary describes Belle as 'a well rounded character, neither wholly good nor completely bad'. Most enticing. :) xx

Diane Fordham said...

I am very much enjoying learning about other authors and being introduced to their books. Thank you Rosemary. x

Rosemary Gemmell said...

Hello Sheryl - thanks for visiting. Glad it enticed you - she's not your usual heroine!

Hi Diane - thanks for that. I enjoy featuring other writers here.

Melanie said...

I first met Chris in 2001 via e-mail. Since then we've become great friends. I've been to her home in Scotland and she's been to mine in Canada.

I've read all three of Chris's novels and love each and every one of them.

I'm happy to be one of her Associate Readers at loveahappyending.com

This was an excellent review of A Salt Splashed Cradle and if I hadn't already read it, it would be getting prioritized to the top of my TBR list.

Thanks for sharing!

Linn B Halton said...

Chris is an amazing lady and her books are a testament to her talent! She never fails to amaze me with the amount of energy and commitment she demonstrates - A Salt Splashed Cradle is a wonderful novel and has rave reviews!

Rosemary Gemmell said...

Hi Melanie - thanks for that lovely comment!

Hello Linn - well deserved praise!

Chris Longmuir said...

Thank you, thank you, thank you for all your lovely comments. I'll be walking on air all weekend now.

Patsy said...

Rosemary, I've nominated you for the Irrestibly Sweet Blogger award. Please pop over to mine if you'd like to accept it.

lotsocats100 said...

Very nice review Rosemary. This is actually next on my list to read. Thank you for the review. I'm looking forward to reading it even more now.

Rosemary Gemmell said...

You deserve it, Chris!

Aw that's lovely - thank you, Patsy!

Hello lotsocats - thanks for visiting! I'm sure you'll enjoy the book.

Anne E. Johnson said...

Rosemary, I've given your blog an award. Please pop around to my blog to pick it up! http://anneejohnson.blogspot.com/2012/01/award-and-interview-all-in-one-day.html

Rosemary Gemmell said...

Hi Anne - that's lovely, thank you!