Catherine E. Chapman
I write women's fiction and romance. My longer works have been described as quirky romances. I also write shorter fiction in the genre of historical romance.
For tasters of my writing, the short stories, 'Opening Night,' 'The Ramblers,' 'The Family Tree,' 'The Office Party' and 'All The Trimmings,' are 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 early Victorian period, has been my most popular book to date, receiving great responses from readers who appreciate that it's intended to be an homage to the Brontes.
A review of 'Kitty,' my Regency romance, written in an Austen-esque style, concluded, "Well worth your time for a light and light-hearted read. I recommend it to all who just need a small diversion from life."
'Three Romances,' a collection of the stories, 'Brizecombe Hall,' 'Kitty' and my WWII romance, 'The Hangar Dance,' is available digitally and in print.
The novel, 'Elizabeth Clansham,' is also available in both digital and print formats.
My latest contemporary novella is 'Clifton.' There are more short historical romances in the pipeline...
Where to find Catherine E. Chapman online
Where to buy in print
The Office Party
In the run up to their Christmas works' party, Maria's colleague, Clair, has her eye on the new guy, Alex. But it's Maria herself who finds she's the object of unexpected attention. A short story for Christmas.
The Family Tree
When Jack finds a wooden box in his grandma's attic, a family secret is unearthed and his grandma faces a dilemma: should she keep it in the family or keep it to herself? A short story.
Three Medieval Romances: Braggot Park, Danburgh Castle & Rhiannon
A collection of three short historical romances; set in the Medieval and Elizabethan eras and adult in tone. 'The plot was tight and kept me engaged, good characterisation meant I truly cared about what was happening,' (4 star review of Danburgh Castle). 'Very well-written and fast-paced,' (4 star review of Braggot Park). 'A good quick read,' (Goodreads review, 2012).
(4.00 from 1 review)
Eliza, lady-in-waiting to Lady Jane, is sent to work in the household of the noblewoman's brother-in-law, Sir Richard. Upon arrival at Braggot Park, Eliza encounters his son, Lorenzo, and swiftly falls under his spell. But all is not as it seems at Braggot Park; Eliza faces a dilemma: should she tell Sir Richard the truth? A short, adult, Elizabethan romance. "Very well-written and fast-paced."
(5.00 from 1 review)
Lisa is invited to the opening night of the local am-dram production by her friend, Maddie. There she encounters Jason, an old flame, but she's daunted by the glamorous young woman on his arm. Just who is Alice? "This short story can be savoured slowly, like sipping the perfect cup of tea!" (4 star review, Barnes & Noble, Jan '14).
Michelle, involuntarily single thirty-something, is living beyond her means but desperate to retain the flat and urbane lifestyle she enjoys in the sought-after suburb of Clifton. When she meets Lawrence, successful businessman, she thinks her prayers may have been answered.
A darkly comic novella about two love affairs played out against a backdrop of aspiration and ambition.
All The Trimmings
A short story for Christmas. Issy is nervous about introducing her new boyfriend to her family on Christmas Day.
Three Romances: Brizecombe Hall, Kitty & The Hangar Dance
(4.00 from 1 review)
Collection of Three Romantic Stories that are Short & Sweet: "5 stars; perfect for a quick romance fix!" Brizecombe Hall - set in early Victorian England, 'A young woman must value, above all else, her virtue.' Kitty - "Captured the spirit of our well-loved Regency romances far better than some lengthier works." The Hangar Dance - set during World War II, "A story about love, innocence and loss."
(4.00 from 2 reviews)
Kitty Lewis travels with her younger sister to join their family for the season in Bath. With time, her plan to keep her head firmly fixed in a book and avoid all the nonsense going on about her goes gradually awry. "Captured the spirit of our well-loved Regency romances far better than some lengthier works." "I recommend it to all who need a small diversion from life," (4-star review, Sept.'13).
The Hangar Dance
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).
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. An adult Medieval romance. "A good quick read," Goodreads, Aug '12.
(3.25 from 4 reviews)
Two friends, Sandy and Angela, join a rambling group in the hope of finding love. The girls are unused to walking and ill-equipped for their expedition. Early in the walk Angela hurts her ankle but she refuses to give up. Events that follow challenge both girls' first impressions of their fellow ramblers.
"A really cute, well-written short story," (5 Star Review, Barnes & Noble, Aug. 2012).
(4.00 from 1 review)
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? A short Medieval romance that is adult in tone.
The Beacon Singer
(3.50 from 2 reviews)
Disillusioned jazz singer, Jane Lake, returns home to find herself at the centre of amorous intrigue. Embarking upon an emotional journey that brings chaos to her circle of friends, Jane teeters between personal jeopardy and a burgeoning self-knowledge that might just permit the prospect of love...
"I loved this book ... Many LOL moments. A very satisfying read," (Review, March 2013).
(4.57 from 7 reviews)
‘A young woman must value, above all else, her virtue.’
Ann Rhys, daughter of a minister, is employed by Charles Brindley, the widowed Master of Brizecombe Hall, as governess to his two children. Her initial feelings of apprehension regarding her employer are rapidly surpassed by other emotions that are new to Ann.
"I love when true love overcomes social standing," 5-star review, Oct 2011.
(3.50 from 4 reviews)
Elizabeth, reluctant teacher and aspiring author, retreats to a croft house in the Scottish Highlands to write a novel and avoid real life. Real love, however, proves harder to elude. Andrew maintains it’s the things you don’t do in life that you regret but is it ever too late for love to blossom?
"A finely-crafted tale of social interactions, love and finding yourself," Review, Sept 2011.
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Smashwords book reviews by Catherine E. Chapman
- 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.