the writer is a lonely hunter

writing by Gail Aldwin and other authors

The String Games wins an award


Victorina Press the publisher of The String Games is delighted that two of their books have been awarded as finalists in the Best Cover Design for Fiction and Non-Fiction in the 2019 International Book Awards. My novel The String Games was selected as a finalist in the Best Cover Design for Fiction.

The cover image features the profile of the protagonist of the novel as a young woman and the string design for the title represents the controlling metaphor of the novel. The catalyst for The String Games is the abduction and murder of a young boy and the story is told from the perspective of his older sister. The characters lead tangled lives that are knotted and twisted but Imogen is eventually able to get to the truth of what happened to her brother and address issues of unresolved grief. The outcome of this coming-of age story is positive, showing the possibility of fresh starts and new beginnings

I worked with the illustrator, Fiona Zechmeister, to produce the cover design. It was a collaborative effort to bring about a cover we were both pleased with. Fiona is an outstanding illustrator and I’m delighted her skills are recognised in this award.

The String Games  is available online through Victorina PressWaterstones and Amazon.  It is  also stocked by independent bookshop in Dorset including Serendip in Lyme Regis,  The Book Shop in Bridport, Gullivers in Wimborne and Winstone’s in Sherborne.



A visit to Serendip, Lyme Regis

My post for this week about independent bookshops coincides with  Independent Booksellers’ Week.  Please join me for a visit to Serendip.

The bookshop on thriving Broad Street, takes its name from the island of Sri Lanka. Serendip has a fresh feel, with a new frontage changed in 2010 from the original created 30 years ago during the filming of The French Lieutenant’s Woman. Inside the space is airy and light, with a high ceiling. Bee Painton, who runs the bookshop with her husband Chris, invests in daylight quality lighting to create the effect.

The shop is arranged for easy access, with displays and shelving providing enough room for wheelchairs and buggies.  It caters for a range of customers, including residents, second-home owners, and visitors to the area of all ages. Bee has introduced a wide range of quality greeting cards, postcards, wrapping paper and book themed gifts to complement the selection of books.  Titles about the local area (including walking and fossil books) appear near the entrance together with new fiction. Shelves along the walls hold fiction titles and there is a large range of children’s books. Background music, including jazz, is played to create a relaxed atmosphere.

By the modern-effect fireplace there is a rocking chair and a child-size chair for in-store book sharing. The non-fiction section is tucked away at the back of the store with another lovely seating area to encourage browsing.

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