anne-allenMy second guest at the party today is the writer, Anne Allen. Anne has arrived just as we’ve all taken a break from swing dancing. I’m delighted to see that she’s brought a selection of dressing up outfits. Doesn’t Paul look cute as an elf? And Debbie makes a wonderful Mother Christmas. Anne’s second item is a case of Veuve Cliquot champagne. (I am absolutely loving all this champagne!) Whilst Anne and I choose a dressing up outfit each, let’s take a look at her Q&As.

What is the first book you remember reading or having read to you? I vaguely remember a battered copy of Rupert Bear in the house and it being read to me. My parents weren’t into books – considered a luxury – but when I was old enough I joined the local library and became an avid reader.

Which book have you always meant to get round to reading, but still not read? ‘Clarissa’ by Samuel Richardson, an 18th century novel about a tragic heroine badly used by her family. It’s a huge book (2 fat volumes!) so not sure if and when I’ll read it, but it’s considered a prime example of the early English novel.

What are you currently reading? Something completely different! ‘The Quiet Earth’ by Elizabeth Harris. This is a time-slip story set between the 13th century and present in the Wye Valley. It focuses on the present day unearthing of a baby in what was the burial ground of a monastery and the emotional reactions of one of those present – a woman who is mourning the loss of her own baby. Only a little way in but promises to be good – and recommended by the queen of time-slip, Barbara Erskine.

Where are you happiest? On the beautiful island of Guernsey, where I lived for nearly 14 years and have left some lovely friends as well as one of my two sons. I loved it so much I’ve written five books (so far!) in The Guernsey Novels series – gives me a wonderful reason for frequent visits .

Who would you like to star in a film of your life? It would need to be someone who could age convincingly over a long period of time or we’d need two actresses! So, I’ve come up with Emily Mortimer for the younger me and Emma Thompson for the rest. Not that I look anything like either of them, but they’d make me look great on screen!

Describe your best ever holiday. I have two which are difficult to choose between. The first was about 14 years ago and was a trip on the Nile with a bunch of other singles and we had a fab time. We went in November and the weather was perfect and the group and the guide were great fun. Walked for miles around temples and the Valley of the Kings and even got as far as Abu Simbel. I love anything to do with Egypt so was in my element.

The second was last year in October when I joined a tour around the Aegean islands, again with a group of singles, rather more mature this time. We stayed on 3 different islands and ferried between them and I spent most of the time looking out for Tom Conti to my Shirley Valentine. Sadly, he never showed up but the company and the sights more than made up for it.

What do you think is the best thing about social media? How easy it is to connect with friends and like-minded people (like writers) from all over the world, particularly with facebook. I love the visual connections of photos and videos and have learnt so much about how people view themselves and the world we live in.

And the worst…?! Sometimes people overdo the ‘sharing’ and I have to scroll past posts I find distasteful or inflammatory. And trolling is a big problem for some.

What’s your signature dish? Roast lamb with rosemary and garlic, served with baby roast potatoes and mixed vegetables, with a lovely gravy.

Thanks, Anne. I do love a good time slip novel. I have every intention of writing one in the future.

I’m pretty partial to a roast lamb dinner as well. 🙂

annes-bookAnne’s written a series of books, set on Guernsey. They’re stories to make you fall in love with the beautiful island.

Anne’s novels can be purchased on Amazon.

For more information about Anne Allen, head over to her website. 

Please pop back tomorrow and see how we’re all getting on.

 

Check out my full guest list here.

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