On the rare occasions I read fiction, I like to settle down with a serial killer and a bit of spirited forensic pathology; I'm not a chick lit girl. But when my spa therapist-turned-buddy and her friend launched the book they'd plotted, written and published all under their own steam, how could I not get stuck in?
I'll be honest, it did take me a while to get started on Jackman's Jewels, but once my nose was firmly in, it didn't come out until the end. It was far less frothy than I'd feared, pacey and funny with one or two quite gritty bits and, d'you know, I thoroughly enjoyed it! With my editor's hat on, it would benefit from a bit of spit & polish but, for a first foray into the world of literature, Sarah McMartin and Leigh Stewart Ronald have done a great job.
One particularly fun thing is that every chapter is the title of a song, so if you get the Kindle version you can keep clicking through to YouTube and warbling along! Here's the whole playlist, in case you want to start the party early ;)
The response so far has been brilliant, with press in OK Magazine ("a must for your holiday packing list!") and the Daily Record, and people have been filling the girls' Facebook timeline with photos of JJ going global, from Paris to the Caribbean...and even at 38,000 feet!
The Sarah Stewart glitterati have already toured several venues in Central Scotland, including Bridge of Allan and Dunblane, where they held launch evenings brimming with bubbles and Jackman's cupcakes - SO good! - and I believe there are more planned. 'Like' them on Facebook to keep on top of what they're up to, and you can buy the paperback and Kindle on Amazon now.
Long and short, if you're looking for something to keep you perked up in your downtime, I heartily recommend you join Alex, Holly, Kelly and Anna on their romp from Edinburgh to Ibiza, with Mr Jackman, his jewels and an assortment of savoury and unsavoury characters in tow. It's a blast.
(Photos by Claire Loftus Photography; cupcakes by Beech Tree Cafe.)