Tuesday, 14 March 2017

Teashops and Time Lords by Juliet Greenwood

Last week, I travelled to London for the launch of Trisha Ashley’s latest heart-warming, life-affirming novel, The Little Teashop of Lost and Found.

Trisha Ashley
I left a chilly North Wales, with snow on the mountains and a few daffodils braving the wind, to a London bathed in spring sunshine. The blossom was out in St James’ Park, along with banks of crocuses and daffodils, and tourists speaking every language on earth (so it seemed) were out in force, as gleeful as ever as actually being in London.

I used to live in London, and I'm always surprised that it’s still the same buzz whenever I go back. This visit was made particularly special by Trisha’s launch at the wonderful Daunt Books in Marylebone. I was there as the unofficial paparazzi, clutching my new, still unfamiliar, camera, wishing my old faithful hadn’t just decided to give up the ghost. We arrived at dusk, and there in the window, we could see rows of Trisha’s books, taking pride of place, the pretty cover glowing out into the darkness. Daunt’s itself was just what a bookshop should be, opening up into Edwardian splendour, with a long galleried main room complete with an arched window and books everywhere you looked. A bookworm’s dream.

Trisha Ashley, outside Daunt Books
The launch itself was fun and relaxed. The large space soon filled with Trisha’s friends and supporters, and representatives from her publishers, Transworld. There was even a Time Lord, in the form of Peter Davison, accompanying his wife, author Elizabeth Heery.

Peter Davison, Trisha Ashley, Elizabeth Heery
Trisha signed books with style, chatted to everyone, making the many people there feel welcome, and was presented with a bag of teashop-related goodies from Transworld to celebrate. Thank goodness my camera behaved itself (apart from having to switch it off a few times when it did something far too sophisticated for me to understand), and the lighting in Daunt’s was perfect. Everyone there was so relaxed and enjoying themselves my paparazzi duties were great fun.

Margaret James, Trisha Ashley

Trisha Ashley, Poppy Stimpson

Trisha Ashley, Norma Curtis, Minna Howard

Trisha Ashley, Francesca Best
So, as you can see, it was a wonderfully enjoyable evening, and the perfect way to celebrate the launch of a new book. A new bestseller has been well and truly launched. Here’s to the launch of the next book!

Anne Bennett, Trisha Ashley, Margaret James

The Little Teashop of Lost and Found
by Trisha Ashley

Alice Rose is a foundling, discovered on the Yorkshire moors above Haworth as a baby. Adopted but then later rejected again by a horrid step-mother, Alice struggles to find a place where she belongs. Only baking – the scent of cinnamon and citrus and the feel of butter and flour between her fingers – brings a comforting sense of home.

So it seems natural that when she finally decides to return to Haworth, Alice turns to baking again, taking over a run-down little teashop and working to set up an afternoon tea emporium.

Luckily she soon makes friends, including a Grecian god-like neighbour, who help her both set up home and try to solve the mystery of who she is. There are one or two last twists in the dark fairytale of Alice’s life to come . . . but can she find her happily ever after?

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