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Sharing our love for authors, and the stories they are inspired to tell.

‘North Of Supposed To Be’ by Marcia Ferguson

The Looking Glass 1997

Think of a puppy. A puppy with melting eyes and velvety ears, the shape of a cracker. A bouncy Boston terrier puppy, crazily chasing a ball.

Moments ticked by as the dog reverie failed to calm Bronwyn’s racing heart.

A sunset over the ocean. No, maybe seagulls gliding on the wind.

Bronwyn breathed a choppy sigh. Her nerves were getting the best of her. Photographing celebrities was effortless, but the Prime Minister of Israel … that would be something else. Gazing intently at her reflection, Bronwyn’s green eyes held a glint of panic; what she needed was vibrant confidence staring back. Waiting was torturous, and the hotel ladies room was like a chilly holding cell.

This book is quite a chunkster at almost 6oo pages, so the first few lines really do need to grab my attention and draw me in.

I think that there are just enough unanswered questions in this opening excerpt to have hooked me into needing to know more!


A picture button for book beginnings at Rose City ReaderWould the first few lines of your book make you want to read on?

If so, would you like to share them with us, (without revealing too many spoilers of course) ?

Click here and visit Gilion @ Rose City Reader

You can then leave a link to your own book beginnings post, or just browse for some great reads, there are always plenty of new authors and titles to be discovered.

Don’t forget that Gilion and all the other contributors to this meme love to hear from you, so why not leave a comment or two at the same time?

I can’t wait to do a little blog hopping myself and check out all the great Book Beginnings you have!


As this was an invitation to read and review, a complimentary Kindle download of ‘North Of Supposed To Be’, was gifted to me, by its author, Marcia Ferguson.

 This will in no way influence any comments I may express about the book, in any blog article I may post. Any thoughts or comments are my own personal opinion and I am in no way being monetarily compensated for this, or any other article.


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I can’t remember a time, even as a child, when I haven’t been passionate about books and reading.
I began blogging, when I realised just how many other people out there shared my passion for the written word and I have been continually amazed at the wealth of books that are available and the amount of great new friends I have made, from literally 'The Four Corners Of The World'.

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    • Hi Sofia,

      Thank you for stopping by Fiction Books today. I love ‘meeting’ new people, so your visits and comments will always be welcome and appreciated.

      On the one hand it sounds as though Bronwyn is an experienced photographer, on the other she seems as nervous as a ‘newbie’ on her first assignment …. intriguing indeed!

  • I agree….there are just enough unanswered questions in your opening that it makes me want to know much more. Yes, that’s a long one so I hope it good and you enjoy it!

    I’ve just begun Mink River by Brian Doyle. Here are the first few sentences:

    “A town not big not small.
    In the hills in Oregon on the coast.
    Bounded by four waters: one muscular river, two shy little creeks, one ocean.”

      • Hi Kelly,

        Don’t you just hate it when you have hit the ‘send’ button and it’s too late to do a darned thing about it!!

    • Hi Kelly,

      There are quite a few unanswered questions bubbling away here that I can think of, but the thing which strikes me the most, are the ways in which Bronwyn tries to remain cool and calm in the face of her building nerves. I have never been very successful with these kind of relaxation techniques, but I think that is because I don’t enter into the spirit of the exercise with an open mind, so the mental barriers are already there!

      ‘Mink River’ certainly has some very descriptive opening lines, especially regarding the relative sizes of the individual waters. I did have to cheat a little and check out the premise for this book and despite the amazing ratings and reviews it has received, I am not sure that this is a book for me, unless it is written in such a way that I can dip in and out of it, without feeling I have to treat it in the same way as a traditional novel.

      I shall look forward to hearing what you think about this one … I love that amazing cover by the way!

      Have a good weekend.

    • Hi Laurel-Rain,

      With some books, you can gauge exactly what you are going to be getting from a book, just by reading the opening lines. With ‘North Of Supposed To Be’, there just aren’t really any clues as to where those opening lines are going to lead …. just the way I like it!

      Thanks for stopping by this week, I appreciate your comments and hope that you enjoy your weekend.

    • Hi Anne,

      I’m not sure if the Prime Minister of Israel has any significance in the overall storyline, however I shall come clean and say that as far as I know, ‘North Of Supposed To Be’ isn’t set in the Holy Land, in fact it is much closer to your home State!

      Thanks for your interest in today’s post and for taking the time to comment, I really appreciate it.

    • Hi Sandra,

      At almost 600 pages long, I think that maybe this book is going to be choc full of descriptive passages and it is good to see that we are off to a flying start with this opening paragraph. Bronwyn certainly sounds like one mixed up character right now!

      Thanks for the visit and I hope that you are enjoying your weekend.

    • Hi Katherine,

      There was a time when I liked nothing better than getting stuck into a chunkster novel, however these days, I tend to opt for a more manageable portion of a great read, simply because I get so small a window in which to enjoy my reading, that too many lengthy tomes take up so much of the available time.

      Marcia has had me hooked on ‘North Of Supposed To Be’ for some considerable time now and I am determined not to keep her waiting any longer to get stuck into it. I just know that with all the research Marcia has so obviously put in, to both her characters and storyline, I am not going to be short changed in the descriptive department!

      Thanks for stopping by, I always value your comments.

    • Hi Naida,

      It isn’t often these days, that I will get stuck into such a long book, with relish. This is for no other reason than that I have so little free time to read, that a book of these proportions will probably take me an age to finish.

      Come to think about it and after having checked out my bookshelves, there is a noticeable trend in the newer publications, for much slimmer books, with quite a scant number of pages. I wonder if this is a deliberate ploy by publishers to get us readers to buy more books, by advising the authors to make stories shorter, thereby hoping we will need to replenish our reading stock more often. Or because authors want and need to churn out books at a greater rate to make any money, and are therefore making their own stories shorter by default?

      You commented that you like the name Bronwyn, as do I. I already know this name to be of Welsh origin, but I did find out this little tidbit of information, which I thought might interest you.

      “Bronwyn is a Welsh-derived feminine given name, an anglicized variant of the Welsh name Bronwen. Because the suffix -wyn is grammatically masculine in Welsh, this variant spelling is generally only used in the English-speaking world outside of Wales.”

      Thanks for taking the time to comment. I hope that all is well with you and enjoy your Sunday.

        • I don’t really mind, so long as the shorter stories still maintain their level of quality writing. However, that publishers are still quite happy to charge the same price for a very slender book, as they do for a chunkster read, I don’t think is quite fair somehow!

  • I read this book. It was very long with a lot of characters, but the author provides a run down of all of them.

    It was pretty good, and it was set in my neck of the woods….Pittsburgh. I hope you enjoy the book.

    Happy Weekend.

    Silver’s Reviews
    My Book Beginnings

    • Hi Elizabeth,

      Okay! So I know where Maine is, and I know that Pittsburgh is in Pennsylvania, but I have to confess that I had to check out the relative position of Pennsylvania to Maine!!!

      I have had this book in my review pile for an age and I feel a little guilty about the delay, after the lovely guest post which Marcia put together for me.


      I haven’t been a part of the Goodreads community for too long, however I have you as one of my friends and I have tracked your review of ‘North Of Supposed To Be’, along with the many other excellent ratings and reviews it has been receiving.

      I am looking forward to starting this one, although given the speed of my reading just lately, goodness knows how long it will take me to finish!

      Thanks for stopping by and enjoy the rest of your weekend.

  • Hmm, intrigued as I am by those first few paragraphs I’m not sure I’m intrigued enough to actually want to read the book. I’d have to read more before making up my mind.

    ‘March 2000.
    North Haverhill, New Hampshire.

    Several miles into his journey, Jack St Bride decided to give up his former life.

    He made this choice as he walked aimlessly along route 10, huddling against the cold.’

    – Salem Fall, Jodi Picoult.

    • Hi Tracy,

      Some of the reviewers for ‘North Of Supposed To Be’, have commented that the book is quite a chunkster at almost 600 pages and there is quite an array of characters to keep track of, so much so that they have an index all of their own. The writing is also very detailed and descriptive, so probably isn’t a book which everyone would enjoy. Personally, I quite enjoy good descriptive writing, so I am approaching this one with a totally open mind and plenty of quiet reading time in which to digest it!

      Your opening lines for ‘Salem Falls’ had me really intrigued, not least because I needed to know exactly what or who ‘Salem Falls’ was, only to discover it is a ‘where’! I’m afraid I succumbed immediately and have added this one to my Goodreads ‘Want To Read’ list, it sounds amazing and I can’t wait to read what you think about it.

      Thanks for commenting and sharing your own lines, I always enjoy checking them out.

Written by Yvonne