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

New On The Shelf At Fiction Books This Week

Why are some authors just so nice! Hattie Holden Edmonds, wrote a lovely email to request a review of her debut novel and it took no more than a few moments for me to become intrigued and captured by the unique premise for this story, especially as one of my fellow blogging friends had already beaten me to it, read ‘Cinema Lumiere’ and given it a glowing 5 star rating.

Hattie even delivered on her promise of  a guest post in double quick time, so this is going to be a combination post, which I hope you will enjoy.

Welcome to – ‘CINEMA LUMIERE’

What if someone had secretly made a film of your life?

Hannah Bailey has resigned herself to a dead-end job, she’s sealed her heart against love and her catastrophic thinking is out of control. In fact, she’s hard pushed to find a single reason for her existence – until the day she stumbles across a tiny one-seated cinema and its mysterious French owner Victor Lever…

Set in West London’s Portobello, and Paris, Cinema Lumière is a story of love, loss and seeing your life on the big screen. If you liked The Time Traveller’s Wife and One Day, this could well be the book for you.

Cinema Lumière doesn’t screen Hollywood blockbusters or even low budget arthouse indies. Instead it shows people films of their lives. But how does Victor create such unique biopics and why is he so determined to coax Hannah into that single red velvet seat?

Hi, I am HATTIE HOLDEN EDMONDS

Image Of Author Hattie Holden Edmonds And Her Floating CinemaI was born in the village of Sarratt, Hertfordshire, UK. After a childhood spent at boarding school, followed by Exeter University, where I studied German, I finally escaped to Berlin for a year to teach English.

Four years later and now back in London, I was still seeking a career, ideally something that I was passionate about, that would pay the rent. Even after landing a job as the London correspondent for the German pop magazine Bravo, interviewing all sorts of 90’s music luminaries from Iron Maiden, Mariah Carey and Oasis to Bon Jovi, East 17 and Whigfield, I was still left feeling strangely unfulfilled …

Eventually a friend sent me to a psychic to see if they’d be able to point me towards my passion (whatever that might be).  According to Teresa at the London College of Psychic Studies, I was destined to write ‘funny’ books, which would have a spiritual theme. Still sceptical and now forty pounds worse off, I went on to  volunteer at Comic Relief, then being given the job of in-house copywriter there, where for two and a half years I got to work on projects with some of my comedy heroes, along with writing on more serious matters – interviewing Rwandan widows, child carers and people with Alzheimer’s.

Later, some three years after the psychic’s prediction, I finally started my first novel, inspired by an account of a woman who was shown a film of her life during a near-death experience. That was ten years ago, and now I write full time, run a ramshackle cinema in a fisherman’s hut in Whitstable, and teach meditation at a palliative care unit in Ladbroke Grove.

Funny old path, but I finally found my passion.

Catch up with me at my website

Follow me on Twitter

Like me on Facebook

WHAT SPARKS A STORY?
That first fizz of inspiration can come from anywhere, but for me there were several technicolour moments, that seemed to be spotlighted in the run up to starting Cinema Lumière. One of the most extraordinary incidents took place over ten years ago, but even now, whenever I think about it, I feel a skitter of goosebumps across my skin.
Image Of Spotlight From Hattie Edmonds Guest Post.
But before I tell it, I want to make it absolutely clear that I am not the sort of person who hangs around crystal shops, I don’t see absolutely everything as a ‘sign from the Universe’ and as for believing in angels, sorry, it’s a leap too far. And yet…
‘Did that really just happen?’ I asked my friend Angelika as we sat on the Nr. 73 bus, heading towards Kings Cross. We were both staring at each other, trying to find a rational explanation for something utterly irrational that had just happened.
.
Earlier that afternoon, we – my German friend, Angelika and I, had been to the Tate Modern, to help take my mind, if only for an afternoon, off the recent death of my father from a stroke. Angelika’s grandmother had also died six months before, so perhaps naturally, our conversation as we’d stepped on the bus, turned to the possibility of life after death. Neither of us had very strong opinions on the subject and neither of us are religious.
.
We were the last passengers to board the bus and were sitting at the front on the ground floor, just by the luggage racks. As we rumbled off, we continued the conversation, but seconds later, without the bus having had a chance to stop again and let any other passengers on, we noticed an old man standing to our left, by the driver’s booth. He was dressed in an oddly old-fashioned three piece suit made from Harris tweed. I knew this because my Dad had a thing about Harris tweed suits and as a child I loved going with him to his tailor’s.
.
So it was the suit that I clocked first. Then I noticed that there was something sticking out of the man’s top jacket pocket, which I can only describe as an out-sized calling card. Short-sighted as I am, I could still make out what it said because the writing was in such bold print.
.
“Death is not the end, it is just the beginning.”
.
That is so bizarre,’ said Angelika, in answer to my initial question. But she wasn’t looking at me anymore.
Sky And Clouds Image From Hattie Edmonds Guest Post.
I followed her gaze to where the man had been standing – but now there was only an empty space next to the driver’s booth. We scanned the rest of the ground floor but he wasn’t there either. The bus hadn’t stopped in the short distance since we first noticed him, so presumably he’d gone up to the top deck, although he must have been pretty nifty on his feet. I scooted upstairs to check, but he wasn’t there either.
.
Even though it took place over seven years ago, that afternoon has stuck in my mind with technicolour clarity. I’m still undecided about what exactly happened. Part of me wants to dismiss the encounter as simply a coincidence. And yet there’s another part of me, a part which lies a little deeper, that believes that the man who got on the bus with precisely the answer to mine and Angelika’s question poking out of his top pocket, was nothing less than a little miracle.
Portrait Image Of Author Hattie Holden EdmondsHattie Holden Edmonds

Picture of an English red post boxMailbox Monday is a gathering place for readers to share the books that came into their house during the last week. Be warned that Mailbox Monday can lead to envy toppling TBR piles and humongous wish lists.

Mailbox Monday now has a permanent home, where links may be added each week. So why not stop by, leave a link to your own Mailbox Monday post, oh! and don’t forget to leave a comment for our three new joint administrators, after all, we all like to receive them … ‘Mailbox Monday’

 Leslie of ‘Under My Apple Tree’

 Serena of ‘Savvy Verse & Wit’

 Vicki of ‘I’d Rather Be At The Beach’

 This is a great way to plan out your reading week and see what others are currently reading as well… you never know where that next “must read” book will come from!

 …

Thanks for stopping by Hattie, it has been great hosting you, here at Fiction Books and thank you for entering into the spirit of the blogging community.

I look forward to reading ‘Cinema Lumiere’ and wish you every success with both the book and your cinema projects, which could form the basis for a whole new avenue of guest post?

Written by
Yvonne

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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28 comments
  • Slightly put off by comparisons with The Time Traaveller’s Wife this otherwise sounds a great read. One I think I’d enjoy as I’d love to stumble across a cinema like this though the idea of someone secretly filming my life sends shivers done my spine.

    • Hi Tracy,

      I must be about one of the only people on the blogging circuit never to have read either ‘The Time Traveller’s Wife’ or ‘One Day’. I am wondering exactly why you are so put off by the comparison, as ‘The Time Traveller’s Wife’ sounds like quite an unusual and intriguing storyline and I have already added ‘One Day’ to my ‘Want To Read List’. I don’t read many love stories, however the strong characterisations in ‘One Day’, are clearly not to be missed.

      I am not so keen on the prospect of having my life secretly filmed and I am certain that Hannah is going to find out more about herself than she really bargained for!

      The quirky cinemas are popping up all over the place though and in fact my brother-in-law and niece travel regularly to new and unique locations, to watch mostly classic films. If you check out Hattie’s website, she has links and pictures of quite a selection of them and, like myself, I am sure you will be surprised!

      An intriguing premise for a story and not one that I could even think about passing up!

      I hope that you have had a good weekend, I can’t believe this weather, it’s like Summer out there today!

      • Putting aside fact that I struggle with time travel novels, I thought The Time Traveller’s Wife one of those novels that was so hyped up that I was almost sure to be disappointed by it.

        One Day on the other hand I found highly enjoyable so perhaps Cinema Lumiere will compare more favourably with this.

  • I’m not familiar with One Day, but I did enjoy The Time Traveler’s Wife and think this book sounds fascinating! I was also quite taken with the story shared by the author. In fact, I must check this out more closely to see if Cinema Lumiere needs to go on my wish list – or better yet, my TBR pile!

    I’ve had a renewed interest in Stephen King in the past year or so (mainly due to recommendations from one of my brothers) and added Duma Key to my pile this week. He felt it might be King’s best book in years, on par with The Stand and some earlier works.

    • Hi Kelly,

      ‘One Day’ does sound particularly alluring, however, like ‘The Time Traveller’s Wife’, it has come in for some pretty mixed reviews.

      I enjoy stories with memorable and well drawn characters, so I am looking forward to getting acquainted with Hannah and Victor, in ‘Cinema Lumiere’.

      I haven’t read any Stephen King for some time, however, I checked out your brother’s recommendation and ‘Duma Key’, even though that is from way back in 2008, sounds much more like the vintage King I used to read in my teenage and young adult years. This is the second Stephen King recommendation in as many weeks, as I have added ‘Mr. Merecedes’ to my ‘Want To Read’ list, as a good old fashioned, creepy crime thriller.

      Thanks for sharing your Mailbox this week and for the interesting comments, I really think you might enjoy ‘Cinema Lumiere’

        • Thanks Kelly,

          It would be good to get re-acquainted with Stephen King after all these years. I am not much of a fan of his recent fantasy and sci-fi period!

    • Hi Vicki,

      It wouldn’t do if we all enjoyed the same books, would it?

      I have received quite a few books for review just lately which have taken me well out of my comfort zone and I suspect that ‘Cinema Lumiere’ might well be another of them.

      I am definitely intrigued by the idea of the personal cinema, although I am longing to know just how Victor has managed to film Hannah’s lifestory, as that sounds rather spooky!

      Thanks for taking the time to check out the post, I appreciate it.

    • Hi Kathy,

      I have to admit, that as much as I enjoyed Harriet’s guest post and slightly unconventional biography, personally, I am very sceptical about psychic phenomenon and events.

      Everything in my world tends to be black or white, with no room for the grey areas, or things which don’t understand, or can’t be explained rationally.

      How events unfolded as Harriet describes, I have no idea, although I am pleased that she has now started writing full time, hopefully fulfilling her destiny.

      As a non believer I have no idea what a psychic would make of me and would I take any notice of their predictions …. I doubt it!

      Thanks for taking the time to read about Hattie and Cinema Lumiere, I am looking forward to reading such an interesting sounding story.

    • Hi Lucy,

      Enticing, alluring and even a little exciting, however I think that there could be a slightly sinister edge to this story as well!

      I don’t think I would want someone making a film of my life, especially without my knowledge and even then I wouldn’t want it to be screened for anyone, including myself, to watch!

      I wouldn’t want to be reminded about all the silly mistakes I had made in my life and the things I had said and done, possibly without thinking, but about which I may have many regrets!

      I wonder what Victor’s motive is?

      Thanks for stopping by, I always appreciate your comments.

    • Thanks Mary Ann, I’m sure I shall.

      ‘Cinema Lumiere’ is definitely intriguing and slightly quirky. The notion of being shut inside a single seater cinema is also a little scary, don’t you think?

      Thanks for taking the time to stop by, I always value your comments.

  • I haven’t read The Time Traveler’s Wife either. I saw the film version (at home) and fell asleep so I guess I’m not the intended reader/audience 🙂 Re: the book you highlighted – the synopsis made me feel a little anxious so I’m probably not the reader for it either. Oh well. I hope it’s a great read for you, Yvonne!

    • Hi Mary,

      I haven’t watched the film version of ‘The Time Traveller’s Wife’ either. It’s definitely not the genre of film that hubbie would go for, although being billed as “one of the best romance books of all time”, I’m surprised that the book has never crossed your path, it sounds right up your street.

      ‘Cinema Lumiere’ seems to be making more people feel uncomfortable than not, which is a real surprise. Yes, there are certain aspects of the story which may seem a little strange, without having read the book to discover the explanation behind them, however I am just too intrigued not to give it a chance.

      It definitely wouldn’t do for us all to enjoy the same books and the whole idea of the meme is to highlight a good cross section of new books, not all of which are going to be hits with everyone.

      Your views are always valued and I thank you for taking the time to comment this week.

  • I liked Time Travelers Wife and often read ‘unconventional’ stories. Some work for me and some don’t – I tend to lean more towards science fiction than magical realism though. Hope you enjoy the book.

    • Hi Leslie,

      I too enjoy unconventional stories, which challenge and question, although I have to say that I am not a fan of science fiction, which is the single genre I never read and would have to decline to review.

      I have never read ‘The Time Traveller’s Wife’, so ‘Cinema Lumiere’ will be a whole new experience in the genre and one which I am looking forward to.

      Thanks for visiting and taking the time to comment, I always value your thoughts and views.

    • Hi Elizabeth,

      Thank you so much for your kind words, I really appreciate them and likewise, always look forward to visiting ‘Silver’s Reviews’, where there are always plenty of good new recommendations for my future reading.

      I know that I wouldn’t want a film made of my life … too many dubious events from long ago, that I have conveniently pushed to the back of my memory, and that’s where I would rather they stayed!!

      I’m intrigued to know all the whys and wherefores of just how Victor has managed to put together this biopic though, so I am looking forward to reading Cinema Lumiere.

      I hope that your week is going well so far and Happy Reading

    • Hi Holly,

      Cinema Lumiere definitely has a unique premise, the likes of which I have never come across before certainly. It sounds very much as though there are only the two main protagonists in the story and if much of the action takes place inside this small and intimate cinema venue, then the characterisations need to be good and strong to hold my attention and capture my interest.

      My comfort zone is probably going to be challenged once again, although I am looking forward to reading this book.

      Thanks for taking part in the discussion, your input is always valued and appreciated.

  • There are some good recs here, I am a fan of fiction and mostly historical fiction. Been reading a great book on the Kennedy assassination and some details that are lesser known it’s good I recommend that one. It’s called When The Past Came Calling by Larry Kaplan, larryskaplan.com is his site.

    • Hi Julia,

      Thanks for dropping by today, I appreciate your time and the lovely comment.

      I checked out Larry’s books and site and whilst I am still not convinced that his style of writing and perhaps more importantly the storylines themselves are something I would enjoy, I am sorely tempted to give one of the books a try, as I am intrigued and interested by his approach to recent historical fiction.

      Thanks for the recommendation and I am pleased that you enjoyed ‘When The Past Came Calling’

      Enjoy your weekend.

Written by Yvonne

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