Women Misbehaving – Five women, too many lies, and gossip that rocks a community
Victoria Bullimore

Women Misbehaving
Five friends, too many lies, and gossip that rocks a community

All Minty wants is an easy life but it seems that’s too much to ask. With the shadow of her baby’s death darkening her days and a growing dependence on alcohol she is spiralling out of control. Who can help her to get her life back on track? Carol is too immersed in her own struggles after a humiliating divorce, and the lovely Bridie is just too naïve and innocent to know what’s really going on. Sarah can’t help, she’s obsessed by sex and her longing to have a baby. Jules, the cleaner who comes and goes with the stealth of a cat, thinks she knows all the town’s secrets but it turns out she’s not as smart as she thinks she is.
In a small town little lies can grow out of control, and when secrets are revealed friendships and lives can be changed forever.
Published: June 2019
Paperback: 254 pages
Price: £6.99
ISBN: 9-781912-419777

£6.99 (+ £2 postage)
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Reviews...

The Smuggler’s Fingers
Paul Webb

The Smuggler's Fingers
The Smugglers’ Fingers, a satire, which often descends into farce and outrage tells the story of the village of Plompley and its population of eccentrics who suddenly find themselves under siege from ‘Green’ energy developers who, in cahoots with a local landowner and corrupt council officials decide they’re going to build a giant wind farm in the heart of the community. The villagers mobilise but when egos and grudges tear apart the campaign groups and it becomes clear whose side the council is on, the hapless local anarchist takes the law into his own hands and the whole village resorts to ever more desperate methods, from the unorthodox to the downright dangerous. Meanwhile the wind farm developers, eager to jump on the subsidy gravy train, use every legal trick in the book to get their way, and a few not so legal, employing violence and vandalism when they deem it necessary. As the battle rages on through a wet and dismal summer the strain starts to tell on both sides and the services of the local Magistrate’s Court and general hospital find themselves increasingly in demand. Observing and commenting wryly from the wings are an ambitious local reporter and a disgraced city banker, both in pursuit of the same story. Meanwhile Mother Nature broods in the background poised to finally reveal the real secret of The Smugglers’ Fingers.
Published: April 2019
Paperback: 304 pages
Price: £11.99
ISBN: 9-781912-419081

£11.99 (+ £2 postage)
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Paul Webb was born in 1959 in Berkshire. A somewhat rebellious grammar school boy and university refusenik he went straight from school into the property business where he spent most of the next 25 years running his own company in south London. During this time he also got involved in the rough and tumble of local politics, at one point attracting a libel writ from one of the major parties. In 2000, after re-marrying and embarking on a round the world sailing race - jumping ship in The Philippines with ‘...better things to do.’ - he and his wife, Ruth decided on a radical lifestyle change and early retirement. Never comfortable in the south-east they started edging north via a series of farmhouse ‘projects’ firstly in Shropshire and then the Welsh Marches before settling on the edge of the Lake District. They travel regularly, particularly to East Africa and southern Spain, while in Cumbria life revolves around the ‘3Bs’: boots, boats and books. Both Paul and his wife are keen fell and long distance walkers, they keep and sail a small homemade boat on the lakes and are avid readers and book collectors. They have three grown up children between them scattered round the world. The Smugglers’ Fingers is Paul’s first book and with tongue firmly in cheek it draws on his personal experience of the property business, the internal workings of local councils and the wiles of would-be wind farm developers. It is of course a work of fiction and all the usual disclaimers apply. Paul Webb is currently seeking an agent to represent him and promote his second book.
Reviews...

***** Nellie - 29 May 2019
Hysterically funny

Grab yourself a glass of wine, turn off your phone sit back and read this book. You will giggle knowingly and laugh out loud.
Following the shenanigans of country life as a village tries to stop the development of a wind farm.
Although the book is funny it relates a very important message about the tensions for sustainable energy, local corruption (allegedly!) and business.


***** Amazon - 25 May 2019
Eccentric villagers cause hilarity and chaos in this wonderfully observed satire.

I loved this book! If you are looking for a rollicking ride and plenty of laughs , then I would thoroughly recommend this book - a great holiday read. The plot moves quickly, and the antics of the villagers of Plompley are hilarious as they band together to foil plans of a local wind farm.


Mashies and Mash Tuns – A Whisky and Golf tour of England, Wales & Ireland
Andrew Brown

Following the success of Of Peats and Putts, this book explores how whisky and golf, ‘Scotland’s two gifts to the world’, have developed across the rest of the United Kingdom and Ireland. Again visiting nine distilleries and nine golf courses -four in both England and Ireland and one in Wales – the author discusses how these two great Scottish exports have fared outside of their native land. Many of the themes of the first book are developed; the importance of location, the role of landscape, the environment and people as well as the author’s contention that these two popular pastimes can be seen as metaphors for the vagaries of life. The author finds that there is always more to learn about both whisky and golf and starts to form a personal manifesto as to how each should evolve.
Published: May 2019
Hardback: 166 pages
Price: £19.50
ISBN: 9-781912-419753

£19.50 (+ £2.50 postage)
Number of copies:


Also available on Amazon

Andrew Brown was born in Edinburgh, brought up in the Borders and educated at Loretto School in Musselburgh. After reading history at Cambridge University, he pursued a career in the food industry, marketing many famous brands such as Bisto, Hovis and Mr Kipling.
He has three grown-up children, is now retired and, outside of his regular visits to Scotland, lives in the Chilterns. Apart from playing golf he is an enthusiastic dog walker, a very average tennis player and a novice gardener.
Reviews of Peats and Putts...

Charles Maclean, Whisky Writer and Master of the Quaich
It is astonishing that until now nobody has sought to bring together Scotland’s two greatest gifts to the world – whisky and golf.
This little book is a personal journey of discovery. In ten chapters, each devoted to a region or county – from Sutherland in the north to East Lothian in the south and Islay in the West - Andrew Brown reviews a golf course and a locally made malt whisky.
As he travels from one place to the next he ponders how and why these two products developed in Scotland and what it is about the country, its landscape and people, which connects them. As he writes: “Both whisky and golf are more than just a drink and a sport; both can be seen as metaphors for the vagaries of life itself.” Indeed!

Golf Quarterly Review June 2018
This is a delightful, well-written little book – part travel guide, part history, part personal philosophy, and part unwitting nationalist tract (what better way, after all, to celebrate Scottish distinctiveness than through writing about its two most famous exports?). It takes the form of a tour of nine regions of the country, in search of the author’s favourite distilleries and favourite golf courses along the way.
I can imagine peripatetic golfers with a fondness for an evening dram, or whisky aficionados with a set of clubs in the boot of their car, packing this little volume and reading up on pleasures planned for the following day. It will be equally enjoyable, though, with a glass of single malt to hand in the privacy of your own home.
What gives the journey special significance is the author’s playful exploration of the similarities and connections between whisky and golf. Andrew Brown, a native Scot who spent most of his career in the food industry south of the border, suggests that location, history and architecture are crucial to the two experiences. History, for instance, is an important part of the narrative that accompanies both playing and drinking. Just as we like to know the origins, ownership and social impact of a particular whisky brand (notwithstanding the marketing hype), so hearing about how and when a golf club was founded, who played there and who designed and changed it invariably enriches a round of golf.
Perhaps design is the most striking common factor given the simple, limited and seemingly unpromising ingredients that course architects and whisky manufacturers both start with. All golf courses are hewn out of sand and soil, while the essential elements of any whisky are also the same: only malted barley, water and yeast are permitted in anything that calls itself Scotch. What produces so many different and unique variations of the spirit is everything from the distilling process to the local landscape, whether it be the taste of the water, the quality of the soil, or the extent of the annual rainfall. In the case of golf it’s the eye and skill to use nature to best effect.
Each chapter describes the idiosyncrasies of a favourite course and distillery. The golf choices are far from predictable – Brora rather than Dornoch in Sutherland, Kilspindie rather than Gullane, Luffness New or Muirfield in East Lothian, the Eden rather than the Old Course in Fife. These reflect not just a conscious decision to stay away from Championship venues but those the author considers best meet his three criteria for selection: a tough but enjoyable (and affordable) test for all levels of golfer, delightful surroundings and a welcoming clubhouse. There is an equally diverse spread of distilleries, old and new, large and small, ranging from multinational owned enterprises such as Glenmorangie to independent Edradour in Perthshire (20,000 cases of which went down off the island of Eriskay in 1941, inspiring Compton Mackenzie’s wonderful book Whisky Galore).
Wisely, the author does not take prior knowledge for granted though spelling out a three-shotter for golfers or mash tuns for devoted whisky drinkers may mildly irritate some. I liked his many diversions - musings on what makes a good golf hole and a good malt, for example, thumbnail sketches of important golf designers like James Braid and Harry Colt, and reflections on the history and practise of naming golf holes. There are plenty of surprises (at least to this non-expert whisky drinker). Did you know that eight of the world’s top ten whisky brands are Indian, while the country that consumes the most whisky on a per capital basis is France (the United States being second and the UK third)?
Tim Dickson
Editor
Golf Quarterly

Simon Marquis, Cornwall
Of Peats and Putts will appeal to anyone who enjoys golf and/or malt whisky. Andrew Brown is an enthusiastic amateur of both and his enjoyment shines through this delightful scamper across nine of Scotland’s finest golf holes, and a rather more leisurely trundle around nine of its distilleries. The real pleasure of this short volume though is the author’s drawing of nice parallels between these twin pleasures and life itself. Golf has its ups and downs as do our lives, some of them at least, perhaps smoothed away by a late evening dram or two!
The book is a pleasure in itself. I eagerly await volume two.

James Holder - Author of The Great War's Sporting Casualties
Andrew Brown's second book, Mashies and Mash Tuns, has all the same charm as his first book. He describes the golf courses highlighted in his book leaving you wanting to play them and writes about whiskey in a way which, because of my own aversion to whisky (and whiskey), leaves me regretting I cannot taste them.
And not content with just writing about golf courses and distilleries, he expresses in no uncertain terms how he thinks golf should be played, views I share but views which I fear too many golfers choose to ignore.

When I Was Young – Memoir of Norman Wimbush
Mark Todd

In late Victorian Birmingham the Wimbush family with their three children gain their livelihood and maintain their respectability in a small café and confectionary business in the centre of the city. Their son Norman, writing in middle age in the 1940s, recalls their everyday life and his parents’ contrasting personalities in painstaking detail, and also his life in local schools and as a clerk at the firm of Nettlefolds, from where his studies at night school eventually enable him to go to University. Re-development of the city centre in the early twentieth century destroys his father’s business and contributes to his early death. Other chapters describe the world of Norman’s grandparents – grandfather Wimbush a tenant farmer in rural Oxfordshire and grandfather Hill a baker in Birmingham Horsefair – and some of the characters of their children, Norman’s uncles and aunts, including his young uncle Ambrose Wimbush as he takes the first steps in developing his bakery business. In the opening chapter Norman tells the story of his mother Annie’s journey as a teenager in the 1870s with her sister and brother-in-law Minnie and Frank Jackson as they emigrated to USA to live and work in Boston, Massachusetts.
Published: May 2019
Paperback: 180 pages
Price: £10.00
ISBN: 9-781912-419647

£10.00 (+ £2.50 postage)
Number of copies:


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Reviews...

Stratford Literary Festival

YouCaxton are holding a self-publishing workshop at the Stratford Literary Festival, 4.00 pm – 5.00 pm on Friday 3 May, at the Stratford Playhouse. It’s called ‘Self-Publishing – a Useful Map’ and it’s led by Bob Fowke. YouCaxton’s Managing Editor. The workshop will give a useful introduction to the various stages of self-publishing, including marketing, design, editing and printing. The fee is £10 (£8.00 for students).

 

 

Wolverhampton Self-Publishing Workshop

YouCaxton are conducting a self-publishing workshop on Saturday 2 February 11 am to 1 pm at the Wolverhampton Art Gallery as part of the Wolverhampton Literature Festival. Admission is free and all are welcome. The workshop will provide an opportunity to learn about all aspects of self-publishing from completing the manuscript, to decisions about design and layout, through to the final print-ready files and publication. There will be plenty of opportunity for questions.

The Swinging Pendulum of the Tide
Chris Green

The Swinging Pendulum of the Tide
Tom is an Anglican clergyman battling with his beliefs. He can’t come to terms with his wife’s tragic death in a car accident. He’s on his way to the remote Welsh island of Bardsey where he hopes to rekindle his faith away from the rush and demands of everyday life.
Beth is an Arthurian scholar on a quest to uncover the truth behind Bardsey Island’s claim to be Arthur’s Avalon. But, abandoned by her former lover, she too has her demons.
They meet in the bar of a hotel on the mainland where they are staying, before setting off to Bardsey on their separate quests. It is the beginning of a long and tortuous path which they must both tread. But it is a meeting that is destined to change their lives for ever.
Published: January 2019
Paperback: 372 pages
Price: £11.99
ISBN: 9-781912-419548

£11.99 (+ £2 postage)
Number of copies:


Available on Amazon

After an early career in broadcasting (Granada TV) and PR (Britain in Europe Campaign 1975 and Queens’ Silver Jubilee 1977) Chris Green has worked in the cultural industries for 40 years. He was Popular Events Director of the City of London Festival (1978-1991), Director of The Poetry Society (1989-1993) and Chief Executive of the British Academy of Songwriters, Composers & Authors (1998-2008). He co-chaired the Music Industry’s Broadcasting Committee at the time of the 2006 BBC Charter Review. He contested Hereford and South Herefordshire for the Liberals (Liberal Democrats) in 1979, 1983 and 1987 when he came within 1200 votes of winning. He currently works as an independent arts consultant from his home in rural Herefordshire. He is chair of the Education Charity ‘Learning Skills Research’, a board member of Hereford’s Courtyard Arts Centre, a member of the newly formed Herefordshire Cultural Partnership and chair of the Francis W Reckitt Arts Trust. He is a Fellow of the Royal Society of Arts and a Freeman of the City of London. He was awarded the BASCA Gold Badge of Merit for service to the Music Industry in 2009. ‘The Swinging Pendulum of the Tide’ is his first novel.
Reviews...

Screenwriting

Writer Richard Hawkins has joined YouCaxton to provide a new service of advice and editing for screenplays. The service includes an honest and objective professional critique of the work, editorial support, script development and formatting, so that presentations are up to a professional standard and maximise their chance of going forward to production.

 

Richard has worked as a writer and producer since the late 1980s with several critically acclaimed productions to his name, including on Broadway. His first screenplay, the internationally successful The Theory of Flight, was co-produced by both the BBC and Miramax and directed by Paul Greengrass (Bourne Ultimatum, Captain Philips). It starred Kenneth Branagh and Helena Bonham Carter. Richard has also worked closely alongside the acclaimed Polish director Pawel Pawlikowski (My Summer of Love, Aida).

 

His own directorial debut came with the enormously well received Everything, starring Ray Winstone, which quickly became a cause celebre on the festival circuit, heralded by the Sydney Film festival as ‘The perfect model for budget feature making’ – and went on to win several international awards and a prestigious BAFTA nomination for Richard himself.
Everything is boldly conceived and executed, the kind of film British cinema needs more of.’ The Daily Telegraph
‘A highly promising feature debut … truthful, perceptive and moving.’ The Observer

 

Richard has worked recently as a creative adviser for China’s emerging film industry, playing a critical role in the establishment of several on-going, long-term relationships between American and Chinese studios. He also gives support as a specialist acting coach, taking both new and established stars and working them through various castings and/or preparing them for particular film roles. Actors worked with include Benedict Cumberbatch, Naomi Harris, Domonic Cooper, Stephen Mangan, Gugu Mbatha Raw, Ed Skrein, Danny Dyer, to name but a few.