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September book club - leave your thoughts and questions for Lesley

(54 Posts)
LauraGransnet (GNHQ) Mon 03-Sep-18 11:20:01

Hello everyone!

Your copies of The House Across the Street should be on their way, so please do leave your thoughts and questions for author Lesley Pearse on the thread below once you've finished reading.

If you've borrowed and bought a copy yourself, you're also very welcome to join the conversation.

Buddie Wed 05-Sep-18 10:44:13

My copy has just been delivered and a quick look at the blurb suggests it should be an intriguing read. looking forward to it.

eGJ Wed 05-Sep-18 14:01:58

Parcel has come; coffee made, now for an enjoyable afternoon’s reading?Thank you GN

Liz46 Wed 05-Sep-18 14:11:21

Watching for the postman with everything crossed! Lesley is my favourite author.

LynnKnowles Wed 05-Sep-18 16:30:25

Received my copy today. Looking good. Read a couple of chapters already and eager to carry on. Thank You

Grannyknot Wed 05-Sep-18 19:17:04

Got mine today too, on hols next week = perfect!

harrigran Wed 05-Sep-18 20:29:14

Thank you, my book arrived this morning, brilliant timing as I just finished a novel yesterday.

Hellosunshine Wed 05-Sep-18 21:02:18

Received my copy today, thank you. Looking forward to starting it tonight.

halfgran Wed 05-Sep-18 22:12:55

Thank you my copy also arrived today starting it now

Greciangirl Wed 05-Sep-18 22:39:09

Thank you also for my copy. Will try to finish before end of September.

Jalima1108 Wed 05-Sep-18 23:11:48

Thank you; it had arrived today while I was out smile

I will abandon my other novel and try to read this before the end of September.

travelsafar Thu 06-Sep-18 06:38:13

My copy arrived yesterday so i will read as soon as i have finished my library book . Thank you for the prize.

LadyGracie Thu 06-Sep-18 19:15:33

I received my copy yesterday, I love her books so I’m really looking forward to starting it. Thank you.

obag Fri 07-Sep-18 08:05:17

Don't think I am getting a free copy as nothing has arrived yet, I was very lucky and got a copy most months, but not had one since the May book, am I just not lucky anymore or have I omitted to fill something in on the form or change settings etc on the website.

weather Sat 08-Sep-18 11:06:45

Thank you so much for my free copy which arrived a few days ago.
I have now finished reading I have found it hard to put down..
I found the story extremely interesting as I know of cases similar to the one written about although I know this story is fiction it comes over as true to life.
I would like to ask the author where she obtained her details from?
If they were true life examples obtained by talking to others who are in the know about this type of abuse.
If this is an inappropriate question I would not expect an answer these subjects are extremely sensitive.
I found the book really interesting and would like to thank the author for all the time and effort she has put into writing this story, it certainly helps me to understand more about this subject and be more sympathetic to those who find themselves trapped in this type of situation.

Miriam Sun 09-Sep-18 17:23:04

My copy arrived a couple of days ago and now I have finished the book I was reading I will be starting to read it later today, really looking forward.

eGJ Mon 10-Sep-18 21:42:16

Well Lesley what a read! I had got to page 100 and started again last night. Suffice to say your page turning book kept me going until the end and it was quite early morning when I finished?. The House Across The Street is intriguing from the start; you are plunged right into the lives of the characters and the unexpected twists and turns keep the momentum going until the end.
Did you, Lesley, have a house that YOU looked again and again from your house when you were younger and if so did you wonder about the people who lived there?
It was good to read a sympathetic novel highlighting a secret that occurs behind closed doors; did you set the book in 1962 to show that this is not a new crime and the likely reactions and practical difficulties in resolving things in an earlier era when communication was not quite so instant?

mummydiaz Wed 12-Sep-18 09:17:49

Loved your book. Couldn't put it down and finished in 2 days although didn't want it to end. It has been some time since I have read one of your books and had forgotten how much I enjoy them. Thank you

libra10 Wed 12-Sep-18 11:30:52

Thank you for sending me this enjoyable book.

I found this to be a well written story which had a real feel of the sixties. The book is written in an old fashioned style (which I liked), about Katy, whose father has been charged with murdering a neighbour, and her courage and determination to prove him not guilty.

The book addresses strong issues, such as domestic abuse, violence and murder. The main characters are charismatic and likeable, with Katy showing steely determination to find out who the real perpetrator of a local arson attack is.

The story unfolds rapidly, is well researched and written, with believable characters, and I found it thoroughly enjoyable.

Highly recommended, and I would love to read other books by Lesley Pearse.

I would like to ask Lesley how she began her writing career. Did she write stories as a child, and how difficult it was to have her first book published.

LadyGracie Thu 13-Sep-18 19:14:04

I loved this book and didn’t want it to end, what a great storyteller Lesley is. I read each of her books as they come out.
I’d like to ask how long on average it takes her to research her subjects and characters before she begins writing and where she gets her ideas from?

Hellosunshine Fri 14-Sep-18 09:37:10

I have read quite a lot of your books already but this one was a bit different. I loved the sixties feel which was very authentic and found it easy to read as the story unfolded. I wondered at the part of the story where Katy starts to feel slightly fond of her captor - was that researched it was it author's own thoughts? Enjoyable book which I read a lot quicker than I thought I would. I loved the "cosy" ending.

Grannyknot Fri 14-Sep-18 21:10:00

I finished the book during a week's holiday (it was perfect holiday reading). I found it very easy to read with the story zipping along at a pace. As others have said, it captures the era (Sixties) very well. It is difficult reading to be reminded of how very little power women had if they didn't have a career or money of their own.

I found the juxtaposition of what took place between husband and wife in Katy's parents' seemingly ordinary family, as well as that as carried out by the main perpetrator, very interesting, with one situation resolving itself, and the other not. My question to Lesley Pearse is what made you write about this particular subject? (Apologies for being cryptic as I am trying to avoid spoilers)!

GrannyBear Fri 14-Sep-18 21:24:14

‘The House Across the Street’ addresses the important topic of domestic abuse, from the perspectives of those who suffer abuse and those who seek to help them. All credit is due to Lesley Pearse for tackling such a difficult subject.

The central character is Katy, a young woman who lives with her adored father and her despised mother. Katy is acquainted with the woman who lives in ‘the house across the street’, fashion-shop owner Gloria. When Gloria and her daughter die in a fire at their house, Katy is devastated to learn that her father has been arrested on the charges of arson and murder. Katy immediately sets about finding the truth and bringing the criminal to justice.

This should have been a gripping thriller of a book. However, for me, the book didn’t quite take off. I simply didn’t warm to Lesley Pearse’s style of writing (sorry, Lesley!). I didn’t engage with the characters and the story line, for me, was not believable at times. I also had some difficulty accepting the timescale of the story - events seemed to happen with amazing speed.

I would like to know what motivated Lesley Pearse to write a novel about domestic abuse and whether she believes that by opening their hearts and homes to victims of abuse, individuals can make a positive contribution to helping those who have been abused move forward with their lives.

Persistentdonor Sat 15-Sep-18 19:56:38

Despite the plot line being disturbing on several levels, I found "the House Across the Street" very gripping and I appreciated the details which brought the 60's back to life.

I wondered if Lesley ever did look for a flat in London at that time?

Glosgran Mon 17-Sep-18 12:24:30

The book arrived a week before leaving for my holiday so it has made for a good holiday read over the first few days.

I found much of the book to be an exciting read and a good mix of crime novel & romance. I was a teenager in the 60s and liked the setting although wonder if I may have spotted a couple of inaccuracies at times. I felt that towards the end it became a little dull, as if the story had been somewhat drawn out just to fill pages and the trendy lifestyle of Katy & Charles at the end of the book seems to be incongruous with the personalities I thought I'd got to know in the rest of the book. I also wonder whether Hilda's transformation could really have been so immediate?

This is the first novel of Lesley's that I've read but it was certainly enjoyable enough to now read some of her other books.

My question would be from a typographical angle. There were a few uncorrected typos/grammatical/punctuation errors and I would have expected that for such a good quality hardback book from a prestigious publisher that all typographical errors would have been spotted at the proof reading stage and corrected. What is the procedure for proof reading and correcting any inevitable errors prior to publishing? (You may think I'm sad, but as a teacher I've spent my life correcting errors in written work!)