My enormous thanks to Sarah Hembrow at Vulpine Press for arranging for me to stay in with Lucinda Hart on The Beautiful Blue publication day. I’m delighted to welcome Lucinda to Linda’s Book Bag.
Let’s find out what Lucinda told me:
Staying in with Lucinda Hart
Welcome to Linda’s Book Bag Lucinda and thank you for agreeing to stay in with me.
I’m delighted you’ve invited me. Thank you.
Tell me (as if I didn’t know!), which of your books have you brought along to share this evening and why have you chosen it?
I would like to share my latest novel The Beautiful Blue. It’s a very personal book for me, and a lot of it is based on my own experiences in dealing with my father’s cancer.
Gosh. That must be very poignant for you Lucinda. What made you choose to write such a book?
I hope The Beautiful Blue will raise awareness for the people who lose their voices from laryngeal cancer and have to learn to breathe and speak again.
It sounds as if your father had an awful time, so what can we expect from an evening in with The Beautiful Blue?
I think it will be an emotional evening for anyone touched by cancer. But this is also a family drama set in Cornwall so expect nostalgia, romance, tragedy and triumphs. In other words, all the things that make up modern life, and which are going on in the background – even when something like cancer appears to blot out all else.
I think that’s the thing with cancer Lucinda. Ordinary life has a habit of carrying on even at the moment we feel it can’t possibly do so. I think The Beautiful Blue sounds highly relatable.
What else have you brought along and why have you brought it?
If I could I would bring my late father Chris Hart (known as Paddy). He was the bravest man I have ever met. Cancer came back for him again and again and he never gave in. But as I can’t bring him, I’d like to share this picture of him. It was taken only a couple of months before his death.
I’m so sorry he can’t be here in person Lucinda.
I will also bring my two girls, Rafi and Aelfrida. They are my most loyal supporters and, more than anything, I want to make them proud of me.
I imagine they are already immensely proud – and what beautiful names they have.
The book is also about swimming because when you learn to swim you have to learn to breathe in a special way, just as you do with a tracheostomy, so I’ll bring my swimsuit and goggles just in case you have a secret pool hidden in the basement.
I’m afraid I don’t. But there’s a birdbath and a pond if you don’t mind sharing with the frogs and newts.
It’s been lovely finding out about The Beautiful Blue Lucinda and hearing a little about Paddy. Happy publication day and thank you again for being on the blog. Now, if you’d like to change into your swimsuit, I’ll give readers a few more details about The Beautiful Blue.
The Beautiful Blue
HOW many words does it take to end a life?
On a rainswept hallowe’en night two decades ago, it was only five: “She’s there with him now.” These few syllables sealed the fate of Amy Langford, in one cruel moment turning a student navigating love and life into a corpse on a treacherous Cornish road. But who is to blame?
Her cheating boyfriend Olly? Her best friend Chloe? Or Kathryn, the girl he destroyed?
The answer is in the wind until they all return, years later, pulled inextricably back to Cornwall in search of answers. Some remain their old selves, despite the horrors of that night, but one wears a cloak, a new persona crafted like a butterfly from the chrysalis of their past.
Their old teacher, Guy Lovell, and his wife Heather may hold the answer. But just as their lives all begin to converge and they find their voices, Guy loses his, forever. Will the truth make the survivors swim, or drown?
They can only find the answers in The Beautiful Blue.
The Beautiful Blue is published by Vulpine Press today 30th March 2023, and is available for purchase in all the usual places including Fantastic Fiction, Waterstones and Amazon.
About Lucinda Hart
Lucinda Hart grew up in Cornwall and has been writing fiction since the age of three. She has a BA in Fine Art and Creative Writing and a MA in Creative Writing, both from Bath Spa University. The themes in Lucinda’s books are often of great relevance to her. Lucinda’s interest in medicine and surgery means there is often a medical aspect to the stories, something not often talked about (laryngeal cancer, stoma bags, disfiguring skin problems, and plain old age and loss of mobility are some subjects she has chosen). Lucinda hopes her books might help raise awareness for some of these conditions.
Place is also important; she uses her favourite locations in novels and hopes they will interest the reader as much as they have inspired her. She lives in Cornwall with her two daughters. She is the author of The Broken Air, released 2022.
For further information, follow Lucinda on Twitter @Lucinda_Author, or find her on Facebook and Instagram.