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My Reviews

The Ghost TreeThe Ghost Tree by Barbara Erskine
My rating: 3 of 5 stars

I enjoyed 'The Ghost Tree', and found the time slip narratives very effective. The idea of unfinished business from past lives impacting present lives was well-handled, and Andrew Farquhar was a truly chilling villain. But I felt the novel could have been shorter; its length detracted from the tension.

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The Stranger DiariesThe Stranger Diaries by Elly Griffiths
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

I thoroughly enjoyed The Stranger Diaries. The three narrative perspectives complemented one another well, and interspersing with extracts from the Gothic short story heightened the tension. I've enjoyed all Elly Griffiths' Ruth Galloway series, but hope she goes on to write more standalone novels after this.

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How the Light Gets In (Chief Inspector Armand Gamache, #9)How the Light Gets In by Louise Penny
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Thoroughly enjoyed 'How the Light Gets In.' Ganache is a great character, and all the characters are very well drawn. I can picture the residents of Three Pines very clearly with all their idiosyncrasies! The book was full of suspense and tension, and there was a real sense of the battle between good and evil which made for a fitting Easter read. My only criticism is that I felt the murder investigation was rather neglected later on, so the solution was an anti-climax. But otherwise an excellent page turner.

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A Perfect MarriageA Perfect Marriage by Alison Booth
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

'A Perfect Marriage' is a compelling read. The irony of the title is soon apparent, as we learn how Sally Lachlan's early marriage unravelled.

The time slip element is very effective. We move between the present where Sally is hoping for a new start with attractive geneticist Anthony Blake, and fielding questions from her daughter Charlie about what happened to her father, and the past where the dark truth about her marriage is gradually and shockingly revealed. It's an emotional story, and I found myself desperately hoping Sally would have another chance for her 'happy ever after.'

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Dear Mrs BirdDear Mrs Bird by A.J. Pearce
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

'Dear Mrs Bird' was a delight from start to finish. The characters were very engaging, and the comedy heightened the tragic elements of World War 2 London. I loved Emmeline for her optimism and gutsy can do attitude. Mrs Bird herself was a wonderful comic creation. My one quibble was that I wasn't entirely convinced by Bunty's reactions later in the novel (without giving too much away)! But I would thoroughly recommend the book, and appreciated its fresh take on London in the Blitz.

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If Nobody Speaks of Remarkable ThingsIf Nobody Speaks of Remarkable Things by Jon McGregor
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

I found this book lived up to its title - it was remarkable! Unique style and beautifully written with an unusual central concept. My only problem with it was that I found the characters confusing early on.  The intertwining of the first person narrator with her own present crisis with third person perspectives from the past is very effective.  The revelation of the terrible event which happened on the street of a northern city where she lived some years ago is quietly devastating. Jon McGregor writes with great empathy and humanity about ordinary people whose lives are loosely connected in their shared neighbourhood .

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The Secrets of Primrose Square This is a heart-warming and life-affirming read. I quickly became involved with the lives of the residents of Primrose Square and wanted to find out what happened to them. The central tragedy was balanced by comic moments and situations, making the book something of an emotional roller-coaster. I particularly appreciated the narrative perspective of Melissa, the teenager who has lost her older sister, desperately trying to cope with her own grief as well as trying not to make her parents' pain any more difficult. The transformation of widow Jane from dowdy existence to energetic older woman with a new man who scuppers the financial hopes of her scheming son and intolerable daughter-in-law was one of my favourite story-lines within a well-plotted novel. I am grateful I stumbled across the book in an indie bookshop - I wouldn't have found it in a larger store.
My rating: 4 of 5 stars.

Nothing But GrassI thoroughly enjoyed ‘Nothing But Grass.’  The rural Lincolnshire landscape is evocatively portrayed, and I appreciated the sense that the lives which have gone before influence later generations.  The wide cast of well-drawn characters is Dickensian in scope.  The possibility that a man might disappear without trace and without questions being asked in a transitory age was convincing, and so was the possibility that his murderer might be a very ordinary man who continues his working and family life as normal.  Some editing might have helped tighten the structure of the novel, and I did find the time transitions a little confusing, but overall the sprawling nature of ‘Nothing But Grass’ made for an immersive and fulfilling read.
My rating: 4 of 5 stars.


An excellent Gothic thriller, the perfect read as nights draw in! The Fens provide an eerie and atmospheric backdrop as the tension mounts. Maud Stearne is a fallible and formidable protagonist who will stay with me for a long time. Clock Dance

Clock Dance by Anne Tyler
My rating: 5 of 5 stars
I've been a fan of Anne Tyler for many years, but didn't enjoy a couple of her more recent novels as much as some of her earlier work. 'Clock Dance' saw me admiring her skill as a writer of ordinary lives all over again. Willa Drake is a sympathetic protagonist whose dilemmas are very relatable. The sense that she has drifted along with things happening to her rather than her making decisions is skilfully shown as we meet her at different stages of her life. This makes her frustrating but understandable, and it is great that at the end she finally makes a decision for her future.

Delia Owens 'Where the Crawdads Sing' is one of my favourite reads this year. It is beautifully written, with the North Carolina marsh coast assuming a personality of its own. Kya, the 'Marsh Girl', abandoned to grow up alone is a unique character, who I empathised with throughout. It's rare for me to be moved to tears by a novel, but this happened twice in the closing pages. Kya's luminous spirit, and the novel, will remain with me for a long time.


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After the Funeral Launch Event

Thank you so much to everyone who attended the book launch of 'After The Funeral' on April 13th. A very special morning. Here are some photos from the launch: There are two other author talks coming up soon, where I will be talking about writing and my inspiration for After the Funeral. Events will include reading, book signing and Q&A session. May 25th: Author Talk at Lincoln Central Library Lincoln Central Library, Free School Lane, Lincoln LN2 1EZ at 1:30-3pm on Saturday, 25th May 2019. June 10th: Author Talk at Gainsborough Carnegie Library Gainsborough Library, Cobden Street, Gainsborough at 2-3pm on Monday 10th June 2019.

After the Funeral Book Launch with Author Gillian Poucher

Lincolnshire based novelist Gillian Poucher will be launching her debut novel in April. Date: Saturday 13th April 2019.  Time: 10.30am-12noon.  Location: Gainsborough United Reformed Church, Church Street, Gainsborough, Lincolnshire DN21 2JR The event will include reading, book signing and a Q&A session. What's the synopsis of After the Funeral ? "Julia Butler finds her life unravelling when a stranger at her mother's funeral hints at a disturbing family secret. Along with her partner's infidelity and the prospect of a childless future, she's near breaking point. But the discovery of her mother's diary reveals how a war-time love affair had a devastating impact on three generations of women. The diary gives Julia the strength she needs to make peace with those around her, and with the ghosts from her past. Most of the novel is set in Lincolnshire and Norfolk.  The novel is partly inspired by the city of Lincoln and neighbouring villages and Lincolns

Where to find Gillian in Social Media

You can connect with Gillian on Facebook, Twitter or Goodreads. In this latest blog post you will find a list of logos for all the main platforms, just click on a logo and a new tab will open for that platform. Thank you!