A Good Home, An Honest House, Author Cynthia Reyes, Book Reviews, Books, Great books, New Books

A Summer of Great Reviews

What a precious gift from a reader to an author! Taking the time to buy, read and review their book.

My great thanks to:

Hilary Custance Green (UK), acclaimed author of Surviving the Death Railway and The Green Writing Room blog.  An Honest House was her companion during her own book tour:  

AN HONEST HOUSE AND AN ALBRIZIA

I loved Cynthia Reyes’s first Memoir  A Good Home, so I picked up the continuing story An Honest House in happy anticipation. This is a book with a perfect title and has been my companion during a more than hectic summer….                         Screen Shot 2016-08-05 at 20.22.10

I laughed over the Valentine, I wept over Keats, I laughed over ‘a job that pays’. There are few easy-walking meadows in this story, because it is about the mountains and valleys. Among the things that struck me was Cynthia’s insistence on facing up to something we all know – it is never a good time for a difficult or dangerous conversation – and dealing with it so courageously….

Read More at:  https://greenwritingroom.com/2016/08/05/an-honest-house-and-an-albrizia/

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Tina of Chase N Chance Ranch (USA), who took An Honest House along on her summer vacation:  

BOOK SUGGESTION

On our vacation I brought along the new book (An Honest House: A Memoir, Continued) of one of my favorite authors and bloggers, Cynthia Reyes.

Living on a small hobby farm, working part time, having two children who play multiple travel level sports, and trying to fit in a little me time is always a challenge.  I figured I would be able to get in at least a chapter or two while away for those 6 days.  After the third day, my family threatened to hide my book as I finished it and was starting it over again.  I did not want to put it down!!

 Read More at:  https://chasenchanceranch.wordpress.com/2016/07/26/book-suggestion/

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Chip Barkel, realtor and writer (Canada), who made both A Good Home and An Honest House his summer picks:  

SUMMER READING: CYNTHIA REYES’S A GOOD HOME & AN HONEST HOUSE

“Ambercroft Farm, the sign out front said. Hamlin was on a first name basis with the grand old farmhouse right from the start, calling it Ambercroft. For years, I didn’t call it anything at all. The tall, two-story Victorian house seemed sealed off from the rest of the neighbourhood. Within a solid wooden fence and gates, massive maples waved big leafy arms. Pines and dense blue-green spruces soared. A cedar hedge ran the length of the property on one side. This was a private place, sure of its personality and power.”

blog-photo-garden-circle

I often think as I walk through neighbourhoods that behind every shuttered window is a story. Often those stories are ones only the walls and maybe a few select people ever witness. For some a house is a sanctuary, but when life presents a crisis….

Read More at:  http://www.chipbarkel.com/blog/summer-reading-cynthia-reyess-good-home-honest-house/

Chip, Tina and Hilary: I thank you all. 

Note to Readers:

If you’ve recently read a book you like, especially one by a new or Indie author, would you please consider reviewing it online

A Good Home, An Honest House, Author Cynthia Reyes, Book Reviews, Books

An Honest House

Great thanks to Kevin Cooper for this fabulous review. I was so glad to read it!

A Good Home, Author Cynthia Reyes, Book Editor, Book Previewers, Book Reviews, Books, Editors, Manuscript

That Extra Pair of Eyes

Every writer needs an extra pair of eyes, but the reality is we only have two!

Here’s a shout-out to two women who have kept faith with me at different stages of the writing of An Honest House:

Lesley, my writing coach, mentor and first editor.   

Lesley Photo

Lesley Marcovich believes everyone has a story to tell. She runs a writers’ group, biography workshops, and is the creator of www.biographytimeliner.com.

I’ve been blessed to find this woman. Strong on storytelling structure, she divines the things I’m scared to write about, and tells me – gently but firmly – that I have to do it. On my rougher days, she even traveled for meetings on  my verandah.

THANK YOU, LESLEY.

blog-photo-verandah-dogs-in-foregorund-and-visitors-in-bg

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Katherine lives in Gibraltar and provides valuable services to authors around the world. She’ll:

  • Edit your book.
  • Provide a pre-publication review of your manuscript, AND provide critical feedback.

I was blessed with great editors and generous, smart, first-draft readers. As the book neared completion, I wondered: how could I get the kind of review that usually comes only after the book is released?

Katherine Desk

(Photo of Katherine’s desk)

And that’s where Katherine came in.  Her review and report — she writes a thorough report — were excellent. Katherine – a former journalist – asked great questions, made key observations.

Back I went to the manuscript — polishing, polishing.

Congrats to Katherine for her keen eyes, skillful suggestions and empathy for anxious authors. Other authors tell me she’s also a wonderfully professional editor, which makes total sense to me. But even if you already have your own editor, I’d still recommend Katherine, as an extra pair of eyes.

BRAVA, KATHERINE.

 

A Good Home, An Honest House, Author Cynthia Reyes, Book Interviews, Books, Canadian life, Inspiration, PTSD

Up Close and Personal

I have good news to share: my second book comes out this spring.

I can hardly believe it.

When a radio interviewer asked me in 2014 about a second book, I told her I’d started a sequel to A Good Home but had run away from it. In the new book I had bravely/foolishly decided to confront what it’s like to live with PTSD – post traumatic stress disorder — and it terrified me.

I embarked on a gardening book instead. After all, I love gardening. But I hate PTSD!

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No-one pushed me to return to the book I’d dropped, but something happened that made me see that I had to face my monsters again — in writing.

My thanks to everyone who has encouraged and helped me along the way. In addition to family and close friends, I’ve had one doctor encouraging me to “Write!”; one therapist-researcher-writer who directly contributed to the book; two mentors, two editors, one publisher; one painter and one photographer; great beta readers and one discussion guide producer.

Book Cover AHH - Painting by S. MacKendrick
Cover painting by S. MacKendrick

I hope the book will inspire discussions – among families and friends; in book clubs and workplaces; among therapists, doctors and others. I imagine some will discuss what happens in a  family when one member is seriously incapacitated; some may talk about the nature of survival and faith; therapists and doctors may discuss the treatment of PTSD and Chronic Pain and why both are so hard to accept, especially by the people afflicted with them.

And I hope all readers will reflect on love and courage. Both are recurring topics in this book.  (And most of the courage isn’t mine, by the way.)

The Canada Council for the Arts recognized my writing with a small grant to pay for some of the expenses involved in writing a book like this. Thank you, Canada Council, for that vote of confidence. 

Above all, this book is an up-close and personal look at a much-changed life.  Some of it is painful, some parts hilarious, and some are both.  

The book – An Honest House – comes out in June. 

Book Cover Promo - Coming Soon