Guest Post:Hannah Emery talks about what inspires her to write

Harper Impulse author of Secrets In The Shadows, Hannah Emery, offers us an inside look on what inspires her:


The Age of Innocence


I can’t remember a time when I didn’t write. I used to read constantly and then try to somehow recreate what I’d just read. I talk about the Sweet Valley series a lot when I’m asked about what started me writing, because these were really the books that inspired me the most. I think it was because I wanted to be a part of the world in those books, and writing my own version of it seemed to get me even closer than reading about it. I could never read a book without wanting to write my own and I’m still the same now.


Brave New World


Once I’d grown up and been to university, I tried writing a full novel. But then I got to the point where I knew it wasn’t good enough and didn’t know how to make it better. So I enrolled on an online writing course. I’d heard about the terrors of giving someone your work to read for the first time: the tears of agony that ensued when the criticism thundered into your inbox. But actually, I quite liked the constructive comments from my tutor, and I got a kick out of someone else discussing my characters. When the course ended, I felt a bit lost. I needed a new goal, and my tutor gave me one: she told me to join the Romantic Novelists’ Association.


The Pursuit of Love


They say the road to love is never smooth. It’s true: the RNA New Writers’ Scheme was full the first time I tried to apply, and I had to wait another year to join. I went to an RNA conference anyway as a non-member, and felt out of my depth but massively inspired and excited too.


A year passed, and I managed to join the RNA. This time, when I went to the annual conference, I booked a short slot with Charlotte Ledger from the new imprint, Harper Impulse. But true love hadn’t conquered all yet. A broken down train, my appalling sense of navigation and a morning so frenzied it actually hurt meant that I almost missed my slot with Charlotte.


Great Expectations


Ah, but I didn’t miss the slot! I ran a lot, was way too hot, went the wrong way and paid an extortionate taxi fare, but I made it on time! Charlotte loved the chapters I’d sent, and wanted more. I tried not to scream in excitement, preened my final draft, emailed it off, waited and, if I’m completely honest, secretly stalked Charlotte on Twitter a little. Then I finally got an email asking if I’d like to chat about my submission…




When Charlotte called me, she offered me a two book deal with Harper Impulse. Since then, there’s been a lot of champagne, a lot of writing and a lot of amazing online excitement such as this: blogging, tweeting, and chatting about all things writerly with fabulous people who I didn’t even know existed a year ago.


I always saw being published as an end goal, when really it’s clearly only the beginning. It’s probably not quite Utopia, because I can’t drink champagne all day, and I sometimes struggle to fit everything in that I want to do.


But it’s pretty close.

More about Hannah-


I love writing about how fragile the present is and how so much of it depends on chance events that took place years ago. I studied English at the University of Chester, England and I now work in a College where I mentor degree students.

My favourite things in life are my family, my friends, books, exciting makeup products, champagne and dinner dates, zoo trips with my little girl, cosy weekends away and watching things like Gossip Girl and Sex and the City.



Book Review: How To Win A Guy In 10 Dates

How To Win A Guy In 10 Dates by Jane Linfoot

Published by Harper Impulse, HarperCollins




The 10 Date Challenge:

Day 1: Take one loaded commitment-phobe explosives expert, embarking on the impossible–a challenge to have ten dates with one woman.

Day 5: Add in a fiercely independent and feisty burlesque teacher who has sworn off men.

Day 10: She’s so not his type and he’s so not in her life-plan. But the heat is sizzling and the attraction is explosive. And they’re fighting it all the way….




I don’t usually read romance novels, in fact this is the first one I have ever read, but I must say this… Jane is a fantastic writer.

Her descriptive writing style makes you feel like you are right there with the characters themselves. The story is great and the book itself is an easy read. It’s one of those books that when you are reading, you don’t even realize how much time has passed. She is truly a gifted and talented writer and I can’t wait to read more from her.

I would recommend this book for anyone who likes romance novels.

5 stars


Jane Linfoot writes fun, flirty fiction, with feisty heroines and a bit of an edge. She lives with her family and pets in Derbyshire, UK, and loves hearts, flowers, happy endings and all things vintage.


For more information on Jane or to buy her books you can check out her websites-



Author Page Facebook:

Twitter:  @janelinfoot


Review: Looking For La La

Looking For La La by Ellie Campbell Looking For La La
by Ellie Campbell
reviewed by Kelly Smith

Cathy is a stay-at-home mom (or mum since the book is set in the outskirts of London), who, like many before her and scores more to come after, is utterly bored with getting the kids off to school, cleaning the house before the housekeeper gets there, doing the shopping and all the other assorted mundane chores that encompass a stay-at-home mum’s days. When a mysterious postcard arrives through the mail slot containing a sweet nothing for Cathy’s husband Declan and signed “Love from La La,” Cathy is off and running in her quest to discover just who La La is.

As Cathy tries to find the person behind La La, a myriad of suspects emerge throughout the book. Continue reading Review: Looking For La La

Review: Twenties Girl

Twenties Girl
by Sophie Kinsella
reviewed by Kelly Smith
Buy From Amazon

When Lara Lington’s great-aunt Sadie passes away at the ripe old age of 105, her family puts in an obligatory appearance at her funeral. No family member has visited the old lady in decades and Lara, suffering from a break-up with her boyfriend, isn’t really sure why she’s there at all. It’s a good thing she was though, because Sadie appears to Lara in her full-on Roaring Twenties ghostly garb and demands that Lara find her necklace. Continue reading Review: Twenties Girl

Review: For Better, For Worse

For Better, For Worse
by Carole Matthews
reviewed by Rian Montgomery
Buy From Amazon

For Better, For Worse is one of the funniest books I have EVER read. Filled with hilarious and endearing characters, and mad-cap and suspenseful plot twists, I highly recommend everyone read this book, whether you like chick lit or not. An absolute gem of a book, taking place in New York City and London.

A quick plot synopsis: Josie finds out her husband is cheating on her with a woman in his office, and she flees to NYC to her favorite cousin’s wedding. Continue reading Review: For Better, For Worse

Review: Behaving Like Adults

Behaving Like Adults
by Anna Maxted
reviewed by Kelly Y. Smith, Guest reviewer
Buy From Amazon

Holly is an English girl, running her own dating business “Girl Meets Boy” and treading water in her relationship with her fiancé, Nick. After breaking off their engagement, Holly decides to take the advice of sister Claudia and friend Nige (who are both employees of “Girl Meets Boy”) and go on a date with prospective client. After a frightening first date with Stuart, she elects to give him another chance and that decision changes Holly and her life forever. (I sensed a mean streak in Stuart and wondered why, even though Holly appeared to, she didn’t act on it). Continue reading Review: Behaving Like Adults

Review: I’ve Got Your Number

I’ve Got Your Number
by Sophie Kinsella
Buy From
reviewed by Rian Montgomery

Meet Poppy Wyatt. She’s about to marry the man of her dreams, but there is one major problem: she’s lost her engagement ring at a hotel where she is attending an event. It’s not just any ring, either – it’s her fiance’s family’s heirloom emerald engagement ring. A family that seems to disapprove of her, as well.

Poppy’s desperate search begins right at the start of the novel. Things get interesting when she finds a stranger’s phone in a garbage can at the hotel (since she manages to lose her own). She begins texting friends and family frantically, Continue reading Review: I’ve Got Your Number

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