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I'm really thrilled about that. Star Gazing is a wonderful book and lead me to read her other books which I also loved. I just hope that this will make her former publishers realise what a stupid mistake they made in dropping her!

Simon T

Wow, that's amazing!


Indeed, Liz - more power to Linda!


To beat Barbara Taylor Bradford is quite something, but regardless of the competition, I'm so pleased for Linda.




Nice to hear Linda is getting more recognition for her book. I've read a couple of her novels and enjoyed them both very much.

David Nolan (dsc73277)

The name Linda Gillard rang a bell. I just checked my Librarything account and found that I gave 4.5 out of 5 stars to her novel Emotional Geology. I was obviously impressed.

Us men folk are not supposed to enjoy this sort of thing are we? Even when the content of what might be dubbed a romantic novel is appealing, all too often the covers are not only too effeminate but also too frothy and light-weight, I suspect that serious-minded women readers might be put-off by some of them too.


You're so right, David!


Good news! Thanks for posting that; I liked the book very much.

Margaret Powling

WONDERFUL NEWS! Linda knows that I've always praised her books. I just wish publishers - hey, any of you out there, are you listening up? - will now recognise not only the quality but the saleability of her work. Come on, publishers, this is your wake up call for this wonderful writer!

Linda Gillard

Thanks everyone for your support and good wishes and special thanks to Cornflower for posting the news. :-)

The poll was actually for the "favourite" romantic novel of the last 50 years, although the press have confused matters by referring to it as a poll for "the best" and "the most romantic". I'm sure STAR GAZING is neither, but it did poll the most votes from library users and readers of Woman's Weekly (which might say more about the loyalty of my fans and the efficacy of Facebook as a networking tool than anything else!)

But I hope this win will boost sales of SG and that in turn might convince editors to take me on. My manuscripts are getting rave rejections but the constant editorial refrain is that my sales record doesn't justify the risk. You'll perhaps be surprised to learn that being short-listed for 6 awards (3 of them for STAR GAZING) has so far made no impression. Sales are everything.

Btw David - fear not! One of the awards SG was up for was the UK's first environmental book award, sponsored by Forestry Commission Scotland. SG is romantic, but it's green rather than pink. ;-)

adele geras

Linda, I couldn't be more pleased! Fantastic....and I second Margaret Powling's plea to all publishers out there. You're all missing a trick! I raise a virtual glass of champagne to you and Stargazing and all strength to your pen!

Linda Gillard

Thank you, Adele. It's an honour to have such illustrious fans. ;-)

Julie Fredericksen

Thanks to you, another book to put on my wish list. Both your review and amazon's mention descriptions of Edinburgh and The Isle of Skye. I may never get to Scotland so hopefully this book will give me at least a glimpse of my ancestral homeland (my grandfather came from Golspie, Sutherland County).

Margaret Powling

Julie Fredericksen: don't hold back, buy all three of Linda's books (Emotional Geology; A Lifetime Burning; and Star Gazing.) I am sure that one of the reasons why publishers don't snap Linda up instantly is that every book is a one-off, they are all totally different, so they cannot be easily pigeon-holed. But whatever Linda writes, she writes with style, using characters we can relate to and empathize with, and they are set in fantastic locations. Publishers: you don't know what you're missing!

Linda Gillard

Margaret is right, I'm afraid. The last "rave rejection" I got from an editor who'd loved my ms but had failed to sell it to her marketing people cited the fact that my books were "one-offs" as the reason they couldn't take me on. They'd been considering 2 of my manuscripts, both very different from each other (though stylistically obviously by the same person). The variety scuppered me apparently.

I struggle to think of any other art or craft where versatility is not only undervalued, but a positive disadvantage.

Julie, do you know the romantic suspense novels of Mary Stewart? WILDFIRE AT MIDNIGHT is set on Skye and STORMY PETREL is a beautiful evocation of a Hebridean island, though (unusually for Stewart) rather short on plot.


Congratulations Linda. Well-deserved recognition, especially for a romantic novel with a "stroppy" heroine which publishers seem to think is offputting. Obviously readers know better.

Julie Fredericksen

Yes, Linda, I first read Mary Stewart at age 16 (The Moonspinners) and I've read and own every (adult's) book she has ever published, except The Wicked Day, which I have but emotionally can't face reading (the end of this wonderful saga). I will have to re-read Wildfire at Midnight to soak up the Skye scenery.

You mentioned that Stormy Petrel is rather short on plot. Although I love Mary, I felt that her last books were sadly below par compared to her earlier books.

Julie Fredericksen


I'll give all three of her books High Priority on my amazon wish list. My daughter will definitely be reading it at Christmas time for gift ideas.

Julie Fredericksen

I'll try to spread the word about you here in the U.S. As an American, I only knew about BTB; I hadn't heard about you or Trisha Ashley.

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