Catherine E. Chapman
I write women's fiction and romance. My longer works have been described as literary character fiction and my writing style has been said to be filmic. I also write shorter fiction in the genre of historical romance.
For a taster of my writing, the short story, 'The Ramblers,' is available to download for free from Smashwords & their retailers.
Many thanks to all who have reviewed, recommended and rated my books. I really appreciate feedback from readers.
'Brizecombe Hall,' a novelette set in England in the late Regency / early Victorian period, continues to receive great responses from readers who really get the idea that it's intended to be an homage to the Brontes. "Great book, great read; I recommend it to all," (5 star review on Apple Australia, September 2012).
'Brizecombe Hall' is also available in print, in a collection with two other stories, 'Kitty' and 'The Hangar Dance'.
The novella, 'Elizabeth Clansham,' is available digitally via Smashwords and in print from Amazon. It has been described as, "A wonderful story of human relationships," (5 star review, March 2013).
The experience of reading my novel, 'The Beacon Singer,' has been described as being, "much like watching a mini-series; there’s an abundance of plot here," (4 star review on Goodreads).
My historical novelettes, 'Danburgh Castle' and 'Rhiannon,' both Medieval romances, are also available on Smashwords. "The plot was tight and kept me engaged; good characterisation meant I truly cared about what was happening," (4 star review of Danburgh Castle).
My latest publication on Smashwords is 'The Hangar Dance,' a short WWII romance, set in rural Norfolk, England. It is currently free to download from Smashwords & their retailers.
Another contemporary novella, 'Clifton,' is in the pipeline. I'm writing it on Harper Collins' 'Authonomy' website.
Where to find Catherine E. Chapman online
Where to buy in print
The Hangar Dance
by Catherine E. Chapman
Price: Free! 7970 words.
Published on January 22, 2013. Fiction.
Sylvie is a girl who longs to be a woman. When she is invited to a dance at the local airfield, where a US squadron is based, she knows she has to go, even if it means lying to her parents. Upon meeting Jack, a young American airman, life becomes even more complicated.
A short World War II romance, set in rural England. "Sweet story about love, innocence and loss," (Barnes & Noble, May '13).
by Catherine E. Chapman
Price: $0.99 USD. 10150 words.
Published on December 30, 2012. Fiction.
Lord Robert, Norman ruler of a region of England, spares the life of Emma, the widow of an Anglo-Saxon rebel. When his wife dies in childbirth he asks Emma to become nurse to his son at Danburgh Castle. But not everybody welcomes Emma's arrival at the stone keep. Lady Fiona, Lord Robert's fiancée, is suspicious of the nurse and determines to get rid of her. 'A good quick read,' Goodreads Aug. '12.
by Catherine E. Chapman
Price: $0.99 USD. 8430 words.
Published on April 24, 2012. Fiction.
Rhiannon, a Welsh farmer’s daughter, is smuggled into a walled English garrison town. Harboured by a merchant and his son, her happiness is shattered when her presence in their home is discovered. Taken to the castle, Rhiannon’s fate lies in the hands of Lord Edward. Will he believe Rhiannon’s claim that all she wants is to be a lady or will he condemn her to a traitor’s death?
Catherine E. Chapman’s tag cloud
Smashwords book reviews by Catherine E. Chapman
on Aug. 07, 2012
I was interested in this book, among Karen Mason's works, because of its setting in post-World War II England and the author evokes the feeling of a village trying vainly to remain sleepy, despite the onset of irreversible change, in the upheaval she documents in its inhabitants' personal lives.
I enjoyed reading 'Summerset'. Karen Mason's writing style is quite heavy on focalised narration. This could be hard-going to read if she were not so good at getting into the heads of her characters. The sincerity and rawness of her writing is what makes it compelling to read.
If I found difficulty in 'Summerset', it was in the pitching of the novel. At the outset it appears to be a 'nice' story, an easy romance to lose yourself in. However, as the plot unravels there are actually very dark aspects to it, in particular, the conflict in Andrew and Briggy's marriage, and the necessary marginalisation of Briggy in order for a relationship to develop between Andrew and Lou. And because of this, Andrew is a flawed hero. I also found the development of the friendship between Lou, Briggy and Andrew to be, at times, tenuous, Lou's status wavering between that of child and adult. However, once I got beyond expectations I might have had that the book would conform to generic norms of romance, I just enjoyed the intensely emotional nature of the plot. And Mason's characterisation, whilst somewhat conflicting in respect of Andrew's emotional state and Lou's maturity, is strong, the very paradoxes she creates in her characters engaging the reader.
The novel does, as the cover blurb suggests, span several decades and later in the book the scene jumps from one time setting to another quite rapidly. This is fine, however, as the characters are so well-established by this point.
I must echo the comments of other reviewers in saying that this book deserves closer attention to editing to do the story justice. That said, if you enjoy intense, involved romances, 'Summerset' as it stands may well be a book for you.
- Try Me (Three Romantic Short Stories)
on Sep. 21, 2012
My attention was drawn to this book because I recognised its author's name. Della Galton is a celebrated writer of short fiction for UK women's magazines.
If you like romance and are unused to this short fiction format, 'Try Me' is a great introduction to it. Della Galton's writing is pacey and direct, with lots of dialogue and characters who are appealing despite the limited opportunity for character development in a couple of thousand words.
I enjoyed 'The Naked Truth' for the humour behind the scenario and the clever way the plot was handled. 'Saint or Sinner' was, I thought, quite profound for such a short and seemingly light story.
Overall, this collection is well worth a read!
- No Going Back
on Nov. 10, 2012
I was drawn to 'No Going Back' amongst David Blake's works because of the book's categorisations as historical fiction and erotica - it seemed an intriguing generic combination.
The first thing to say about 'No Going Back' is that it is well-written. In particular, I like the fact that the first person narrator's voice seems authentic for the time in which the book is set. Furthermore, the great level of descriptive detail in Blake's writing serves to set the scene in post-WWII rural Wales very effectively.
Reading 'No Going Back' it does feel rather like a book in two halves: the first part is a fairly gentle reminiscence, which would have universal appeal to adult readers; the second part is undoubtedly correctly classified as erotica and some readers may be uncomfortable with the juxtaposition of the two distinct elements of the story.
I enjoyed reading 'No Going Back' for what it was but I felt the story had scope to be developed in ways that would blend the narrative and romantic content in ways that would make the overall work more meaningful. As it stands, 'No Going Back' is technically a novelette. If Blake wanted to develop it as a novel or novella, there seem to be many avenues to explore. Personally, I was intrigued by the character of David - surely the fact that he reads suggests that he isn't the insensitive oaf he seems to be? What does he recall of his childhood friendship with Rob? What did it mean to him?
Overall, 'No Going Back' suggests that David Blake is a gifted writer with the potential to pursue many genres of fiction writing successfully.