IT'S SAGA SATURDAY!! Please welcome the fabulous Elaine Everest...

Christmas with the Teashop Girls is the second book in this series set in the Thanet area of Kent. I’m often asked by readers, and also radio interviewers why I pick Kent for my books. I try to explain that in years gone by saga authors would set their books in an area they know well and where they often grew up. Catherine Cookson, Dee Williams, and Iris Gower come to mind. In the years when I was just a reader of sagas, I found myself drawn to the authors who knew the settings of their books as they stood out to me for ‘knowing their stuff’. No wonder then that I set my first books in Erith where I was born and grew up. I know the people, the history and how the place ticks. When I came to write the teashop series featuring the iconic Nippies I just knew I needed to keep my story in Kent. There had been novels written in the past about Joe Lyon’s teashops and the recognisable waitresses, but they’d been set on London at the larger restaurants. Coming across the history of the Lyon’s business empire I discovered smaller teashops scattered around the country with two in Margate and Ramsgate – wonderful news! I knew Ramsgate from childhood holidays in Ramsgate with my parents and Margate was often visited for day trips that were spent on the beach and in Dreamland. These memories stayed with me over the years. Could I conjure up the magic I still felt for these seaside towns in my books? My first thought was the group of friends in the teashop books had to be different to the well know girls in my Woolworths series. I started with my main characters, Rose how would she differ from Sarah in The Woolworths Girls? Both loved popular music of the time and also go dancing. Perhaps they could have differing musical tastes? The idea hit me late one night when I was browsing through songs sung during World War Two and came across American big band music and the singer Helen Forrest. I had one of those lightbulb moments – Rose wanted to sing with the bands but could not leave her mother to run Sea View, her seaside guesthouse alone. Add a few long-term inhabitants of Sea View and my story started to form… I hope you will enjoy reading Christmas with the Teashop Girls, perhaps while drinking a cup of tea and enjoying a slice of cake? Book blurb: Christmas with the Teashop Girls is a heart-warming and moving story of wartime love, bravery and hope, by the bestselling author of the Woolworths series, Elaine Everest. It is late 1940 and the war feels closer to home than ever for Rose Neville and her staff at the Lyon’s Teashop in Margate. The worry of rationing hangs overhead as the Nippies do their best to provide a happy smile and a hot cup of tea for their customers. When a heavy bombing raid targets the Kent coastline, Lyon’s is badly hit, throwing the future of the cafe into jeopardy. The light in Rose’s life is her dashing fiancé Capt. Ben Hargreaves and planning their Christmas Eve wedding. But she must also plan to take two new stepdaughters into her life and get on the right side of her wealthy mother-in-law, Lady Diana. Is Rose ready to become a mother so soon? When Rose’s half-sister Eileen makes contact, it seems that Rose’s dreams of having a sibling are coming true at long last. But her friends begin to suspect that something is not right between Eileen and her husband: just what are they hiding? As the Christmas Eve wedding draws near, the bombings intensify in Kent and London, putting everything and everyone Rose loves in danger. Only one thing is for sure: it will be a Christmas she never forgets . . . Amazon:
About Elaine: Elaine Everest is from North West Kent and she grew up listening to stories of the war years in her hometown of Erith, which features in her bestselling Woolworths Girls series. A former journalist, and author of non-fiction books for dog owners, Elaine has written over one hundred short stories for the women's magazine market. When she isn't writing, Elaine runs The Write Place creative writing school in Hextable, Kent. She lives with her husband, Michael and Polish Lowland Sheepdog Henry. You can find out more about Elaine on: Website: Twitter: @elaineeverest Facebook: Elaine Everest Author

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