Related to: 'Voices in Summer'

Julie Sarkissian blogs about the problems facing the protagnist of her debut novel, DEAR LUCY

Something's Wrong With Lucy - But What?

Lucy is different – that much is clear. She speaks like a child, doesn’t recognize social boundaries, flies into rages, and treasures rotten food. Her cognition is impaired, her vocabulary is very limited and she cannot read or write. But what – precisely – is wrong with her is left up to the reader. Lucy is the protagonist of my novel, DEAR LUCY, and from the first sentence of the book I ever wrote it was obvious that Lucy was cognitively different. The way Lucy describes herself is as “missing too many words.” Her mother calls her “difficult.” Readers of early drafts of the book had a few theories as to Lucy’s condition; autism, Williams Syndrome, Down Syndrome. But Lucy’s mother has kept her from going to school and Lucy has never seen a doctor. So in the fictional reality of the book there is no official diagnosis. But as the novel progressed I wondered – should I have one? I was torn. If Lucy was presenting enough symptoms to point to a real condition, was I ignoring the obvious not to fold that condition into my development of her character? Was it insensitive of me to allude to aspects of certain real, life-altering conditions but not assign a specific condition to Lucy? I worried about appropriating aspects of serious conditions without treating those conditions with proper respect and acknowledgement. And though any clinical diagnosis would probably not be explicit in the novel, I wondered if I would be ignoring an opportunity to bring attention to a real disorder when people asked me about Lucy’s condition, the way The Curious Incident of The Dog in the Night-time did for autism. On the other hand, I had concerns that if I chose a diagnosis for Lucy, I would be ascribing to her qualities that she wouldn’t have otherwise presented. Lucy had her own will over my writing and over the novel. I didn’t want to yoke Lucy’s expression by keeping her behavior and abilities consistent with a clinical condition. Accuracy would also become a critical issue if Lucy’s condition was named. Ultimately I chose not to diagnose Lucy, though I worry the artistic freedom provided by that decision comes at the price of being judged for being too liberal with my treatment of cognitive disorders. Now that publication is a few months away, I am apprehensive of how my treatment of Lucy’s cognitive limitations will be judged. I have yet to talk to a reader who has a learning different child, or works with learning different people, and that conversation is one I will be honored, and not a bit anxious, to have.

Hodder & Stoughton

Flowers in the Rain

Rosamunde Pilcher
Authors:
Rosamunde Pilcher

Enter Rosamunde Pilcher's world of simple joys, of crisp country air and crackling log fires, the pleasures of family reunions and rediscovered friendships.Through thick mist and a cold east wind, Lavinia returns to Scotland. Up at the big house Mrs Farquhar is dying. Seeing Lachlan again, Lavinia remembers her childhood holidays there: swimming in the loch, the picnics, bottle-feeding the lambs down at the farm and the evenings when they danced reels. Most of all, she remembers Mrs Farquhar's grandson Rory.In the house, as the old lady lies serene and beautiful in the bed she has slept in since coming home to Lachlan as a bride, Lavinia meets Rory once again.Flowers in the Rain is one of sixteen stories, each giving another magical glimpse into Rosamunde Pilcher's world. The world in which most would prefer to live all the time.(P)2018 Hodder & Stoughton Limited

Hodder & Stoughton

The Day of the Storm

Rosamunde Pilcher
Authors:
Rosamunde Pilcher
Hodder & Stoughton

The Blue Bedroom

Rosamunde Pilcher
Authors:
Rosamunde Pilcher

Escape into Rosamunde Pilcher's world and meet characters who will become instant friends. The big bedroom was lovely: all pale blue and white, satin and muslin, cool and airy, the windows looking out over the garden to the creek. But to fourteen-year-old Emily, beautiful though it was, it was all wrong. Her stepmother's bedroom now: everything changed since her own mother had died.And stretched out on the bed: Stephanie, very white and pained. The new baby on its way, a month early. All of a sudden, with her father away on business, Emily had to take charge, keep calm, ring for the doctor and the ambulance. The time for looking back had gone.The Blue Bedroom is just one of Rosamunde Pilcher's magical collections of stories. Stories that will enchant everyone who has read and loved The Shell Seekers.(P)2018 Hodder & Stoughton Limited

Hodder & Stoughton

Under Gemini

Rosamunde Pilcher
Authors:
Rosamunde Pilcher
Hodder & Stoughton

Coming Home

Rosamunde Pilcher
Authors:
Rosamunde Pilcher

Rosamunde Pilcher's bestselling, heartwarming tale of innocence and youth set during the 1930s. Born in Colombo, Judith Dunbar spends her teenage years at boarding school, while her beloved mother and younger sister live abroad with her father.When her new friend Loveday Carey-Lewis invites Judith home for the weekend to Nancherrow, the Carey-Lewises' beautiful estate on the Cornish coast, it is love at first sight.She falls in love too with the generous Carey-Lewises themselves. With their generosity and kindness, Judith grows from naive girl to confident young woman, basking in the warm affection of a surrogate family whose flame burns brightly. But it is a flame soon to be extinguished in the gathering storm of war. And Judith herself has far to travel before at last . . . coming home.(P)2018 Hodder & Stoughton

Hodder & Stoughton

The Carousel

Rosamunde Pilcher
Authors:
Rosamunde Pilcher

One of Rosamunde Pilcher's classic novels. Prue is intelligent, artistic, independent - and bored. Pressurised by her mother to make a conventional and dull marriage, she is delighted to escape London and seek retreat with her eccentric and bohemian aunt in Cornwall. A chance encounter with an attractive young artist on the sea shore leads to day after idyllic summer's day of exploring the Cornish countryside and coast. But there is something troubling Daniel and Prue, now deeply entangled, feels compelled to discover what it is. (P)2018 Hodder & Stoughton Limited

Hodder & Stoughton

Another View

Rosamunde Pilcher
Authors:
Rosamunde Pilcher

One of Rosamunde Pilcher's classic stories. Emma Litton can't get on with her life until she finds out just what place she has in her father's heart. She'd been at school in Europe since she was fourteen, then found a job in Paris, always wondering what her famous artist father was doing in Japan or America or at their cottage in Cornwall. Even after she meets Robert Morrow, the handsome gallery owner, and rediscovers her step-brother, Christo, she still feels compelled to probe into the truth about her past. But Emma might learn too late that it is the truth about herself she has to find and that letting go is the first step to keeping love.(P) 2018 Hodder & Stoughton Limited

Hodder & Stoughton

Winter Solstice

Rosamunde Pilcher
Authors:
Rosamunde Pilcher

Rosamunde Pilcher's captivating bestseller of loss and the healing power of love.Elfrida Phipps loves her new life in her pretty Hampshire village. She has a tiny cottage, her faithful dog Horace and the friendship of the neighbouring Blundells - particularly Oscar - to ensure that her days include companionship as well as independence. But an unforeseen tragedy upsets Elfrida's tranquillity: Oscar's wife and daughter are killed in a terrible car crash and he finds himself homeless when his stepchildren claim their dead mother's inheritance. Oscar and Elfrida take refuge in a rambling house in Scotland which becomes a magnet for various waifs and strays who converge upon it, including an unhappy teenage girl. It could be a recipe for disaster. But somehow the Christmas season weaves its magical spell and for Elfrida and Oscar, in the evening of their lives, the winter solstice brings love and solace.(P)2017 Hodder & Stoughton Limited

Hodder & Stoughton

Sleeping Tiger

Rosamunde Pilcher
Authors:
Rosamunde Pilcher

Are you brave enough to wake the sleeping tiger?Selina Bruce has impulsively left behind her lawyer fiancé in London and flown alone to a tiny island off the Spanish coast. She is searching for the father she has never known, but what she finds is an unexpected truth about herself and the man she plans to marry. For exotic San Antonio offers Selina more than the penetrating brilliance of the noonday sun. It offers the mysterious George Dyer, who holds the key not only to her past . . . but to her heart.(P)2017 Hodder & Stoughton Limited

Hodder & Stoughton

The Shell Seekers

Rosamunde Pilcher
Authors:
Rosamunde Pilcher

For the first time in unabridged audio download comes Rosamunde Pilcher's phenomenal, heart-warming bestseller, read by Hayley Atwell.Artist's daughter Penelope Keeling can look back on a full and varied life: a Bohemian childhood in London and Cornwall, an unhappy wartime marriage, and the one man she truly loved. She has brought up three children - and learned to accept them as they are.Yet she is far too energetic and independent to settle sweetly into pensioned-off old-age. And when she discovers that her most treasured possession, her father's painting, The Shell Seekers, is now worth a small fortune, it is Penelope who must make the decisions that will determine whether her family can continue to survive as a family, or be split apart.(P)2017 Hodder & Stoughton Limited

Hodder & Stoughton

September

Rosamunde Pilcher
Authors:
Rosamunde Pilcher
Hodder & Stoughton

The Shell Seekers

Rosamunde Pilcher
Authors:
Rosamunde Pilcher
Hodder & Stoughton

The End of Summer

Rosamunde Pilcher
Authors:
Rosamunde Pilcher
Hodder & Stoughton

The Day of the Storm

Rosamunde Pilcher
Authors:
Rosamunde Pilcher

At her dying mother's bedside, Rebecca Bayliss is shattered to learn of a family she never knew existed. Determined to find them, Rebecca journeys to Boscarva, a beautiful mansion in Cornwall, to meet a family torn by passion and greed. From her grandfather Grenville Bayliss, who is hiding an explosive secret, to a handsome cousin, whose kisses are dangerously seductive . . . to sensual craftsman Joss Gardner, whose past hints of intrigue, Rebecca becomes entangled in a family mystery . . . and unravelling it holds the key to her future and her heart.

Hodder & Stoughton

Snow In April

Rosamunde Pilcher
Authors:
Rosamunde Pilcher
Hodder Paperbacks

The Empty House

Rosamunde Pilcher
Authors:
Rosamunde Pilcher
Hodder & Stoughton

Sleeping Tiger

Rosamunde Pilcher
Authors:
Rosamunde Pilcher

Selina Bruce has impulsively left behind her lawyer fiancé in London and flown alone to a tiny island off the Spanish coast. She is searching for the father she has never known, but what she finds is an unexpected truth about herself and the man she plans to marry. For exotic San Antonio offers Selina more than the penetrating brilliance of the noonday sun. It offers the mysterious George Dyer, who holds the key not only to her past . . . but to her heart.

Hodder & Stoughton

Rosamunde Pilcher Giftpack

Rosamunde Pilcher
Authors:
Rosamunde Pilcher
Hodder & Stoughton

The Before-Christmas Present and Miss Cameron at Christmas

Rosamunde Pilcher
Authors:
Rosamunde Pilcher

A moving pair of classic Rosamunde Pilcher short stories. Each one is a welcome invitation into a world of warm surprises, beguiling memories and enduring love.

Hodder Paperbacks

Coming Home

Rosamunde Pilcher
Authors:
Rosamunde Pilcher

Born in Colombo, Judith Dunbar spends her teenage years at boarding school, while her beloved mother and younger sister live abroad with her father.When her new friend Loveday Carey-Lewis invites Judith home for the weekend to Nancherrow, the Carey-Lewises' beautiful estate on the Cornish coast, it is love at first sight.She falls in love too with the generous Carey-Lewises themselves. With their generosity and kindness, Judith grows from naive girl to confident young woman, basking in the warm affection of a surrogate family whose flame burns brightly. But it is a flame soon to be extinguished in the gathering storm of war. And Judith herself has far to travel before at last ... coming home.