Friday, August 5, 2011

Island Magic with Helen Brenna!

by Anna Campbell

Oh, be still my beating heart!

Well, not that still. Because then I'd be dead, right?

We have a saying in Oz that you wouldn't be dead for quids (quids is an old slang term for a pound note). And today, I have such a wonderful guest for you all that you wouldn't be dead for quids either!

I've come fairly recently to Helen Brenna's books - via a recommendation to read her RITA-nominated NASCAR story FROM THE OUTSIDE. I'm not that into racing cars but man, I got seriously into tortured and sexy racing car driver Roberto Castillo.


Since then I've read everything from Helen that I can lay my hands on. I've fallen in love with her wonderful series about a resort island in the Great Lakes called Mirabelle. As I said to her when I closed her fabulous THE PURSUIT OF JESSE a few days ago, I finish her books wanting to go to Mirabelle and then there's that cruel moment when I realize it's not REAL!!! Boo hoo.

Helen's books are unforgettable emotional reads about forgiveness and redemption and finding one's rightful place in the world. She has won an impressive number of prestigious awards including that most prestigious award of all, the Romance Writers of America RITA Award for THE MOON THAT NIGHT.

We're very lucky this year - in July, August and September, we get THREE Mirabelle books released back to back. THE PURSUIT OF JESSE, HER SURE THING and REDEMPTION AT MIRABELLE.

Here's the back cover blurb for HER SURE THING, Helen's August release:

Grace Andersen Kahill, the pastor's trouble-making daughter, left Mirabelle Island at seventeen and never looked back. When a devastating accident ruins not only her successful modeling career but also her marriage, she comes home to Mirabelle. She never expected to rediscover herself not through the lens of a camera, but through the eyes of Sean Griffin.

Sean, Mirabelle's doctor, has orchestrated for himself the perfect life. That is, until two new arrivals on Mirabelle upset his proverbial apple cart. A son he never knew existed and ... Grace.

The son, he'll deal with. Somehow. The woman, on the other hand, might just end up breaking his heart.

And don't forget, if you click on the covers in the blog, it takes you right to that book on Amazon.

For more information on Helen and her wonderful books, check out her website:

www.helenbrenna.com

Without more ado, here's Helen! And she's got some news for us!


I’m so excited I can hardly stand it. Today is the day I’m unveiling an illustration of my very own fictitious Mirabelle Island!

But let’s back up for a sec. Actually, let’s back up five whole years to when Mirabelle was born in my mind.

It all started, as so many books start, with a “what if?” What if two people, childhood sweethearts, were torn apart by something as simple as he couldn’t stay in the small town in which they’d grown up together and she couldn’t leave?

A lot of things had to come together to make this a compelling story. I needed a place with a strong sense of community, with history, maybe even a place the heroine’s ancestors had settled, all of which bound her to home. I needed a place that a reader could love, but I also needed that reader to empathize with the hero and the intolerable sense of confinement he felt while growing up. Mind you, none of this was conscious or purposeful. My writer’s brain was just doing its thing when it dawned on me that I needed an island. Not a sand, surf and palm trees kind of place. I needed something different. I needed Mackinac Island, Michigan.

Ever heard of The Grand Hotel? Mackinac is the place where the movie SOMEWHERE IN TIME was filmed. With cobblestone streets, Victorian B & Bs and horse drawn carriages, it’s a place filled with history, a place I could easily imagine Sophie, my heroine.

The only problem is that I couldn’t imagine Noah, my alpha hero living there and I wasn’t entirely sure how their story was going to end. Were they staying or leaving? Then, too, I don’t write quaint and quiet stories set in tearooms and grand hotels. I write contemporary romances with alpha heroes and strong heroines, so I needed some reality.

What I needed was a little bit of Madeline Island, the largest of the Apostle Islands chain located on Lake Superior just off Wisconsin’s northern shore. Madeline is bigger than Mackinac, so there’s space for log cabins, horse ranches, secluded bays and lighthouses, acres of untouched forest, and even a few brew pubs.

That’s how Mirabelle Island was born. A place of stark contrasts. Cold, brutal and isolated in the winter. Sunny and idyllic in the summer. Old virgin forests on one end and homemade fudge shops on the other. The Mirabelle Island Inn with its classic French restaurant a few blocks from the Rusty Nail, a bar that has seen better days. This is, basically, a picture of what’s been on the white board in my office for the last five years. The bare bones of Mirabelle Island …

Well, that one book about Noah and Sophie led to six more stand alone Mirabelle stories, and just as my books have evolved and grown so has my vision of the island. I wanted readers to see what I see in my mind, and so I commissioned an artist to illustrate Mirabelle.

To coincide with THE PURSUIT OF JESSE, HER SURE THING and REDEMPTION AT MIRABELLE, three new Mirabelle Island books releasing July, August and September, I’m “unveiling” the illustrated map here and on my web site. Voila!

It still needs a legend and some geographic titles, but what do you think? Does Mirabelle Island look like some place you’d like to live? Read about, I hope?

To celebrate my back to back releases, I’d like to give away three copies from my backlist today, so check out my website at helenbrenna.com to see which title you’d like. And stop by my website again in another week or so to see the finished map.

Many thanks to Anna and all the Bandits for having me here today!


You heard right, Bandita Buddies. That's THREE people to win their choice from Helen's backlist! Hmm, wonder if she'll let me enter. There's a couple of older titles I still haven't managed to find. Perhaps I can enter under an alias...

OK, OK, I won't cheat (mainly because you'd find me out, you're all so clever!).

Good luck and get commenting, people!

85 comments:

Anna (Bite Club) said...

Love the map! As a reader I think it's a smart move for an author to make the setting as believable as possible, even if it's a fantasy, especially when that setting is part of multiple books. Doing so helps make a connection.

I haven't read any of the Mirabelle books but I'd certainly like to. And if I could live in Mirabelle I would want to be on the forest side of the island, but near enough to the town that I could maybe ride my bike, or even walk. The drawing actually reminds me of something I was just telling my kids about. When I was little me and my mom would plan our dream houses and all our sketches would be in a notebook. All the places we designed were always in the countryside, or on the water. Small places with a big impact. That's how I now imagine Mirabelle. A small island with a big impact.

Thanks for the excellent contest.

Lolarific said...

I love the map also! It's great that you've created Mirabelle Island to form that just right backdrop for your stories! Thanks for the chance to win!

Anna Campbell said...

Anna, I think you're new blood to the lair (the cabana boys are looking very excited!). You win a mythical rooster for being our first poster so you're already ahead of the game ;-)

You'll love the Mirabelle books. They're quite magical and every book builds up a stronger and stronger picture of the island in the reader's mind. Great stuff!

Anna Campbell said...

Lola, these are great books! So glad you loved the map.

Anna Campbell said...

Helen, I have to say my picture of the endless forests at the end of the island was much bigger! I always thought of Mirabelle a bit like one of those villages in a German fairytale. You know, this haven of shelter with a wonderful thick woodland around it full of magic where anything could happen.

Loucinda McGary aka Aunty Cindy said...

Welcome Helen!
What a CO-INKY-DINK! I was just on Mackinac Island in June. LOVED IT! I talked to one local girl who grew up on the island and was in college but home for the summer. She said there were 6 students in her high school graduating class. TOO SMALL for me! Plus, no way I'd want to spend those harsh winters there.

I can see the HUGE potential for conflict with your hero & heroine in that first story and I'm itching to read about Mirabelle Island.

Thanx so much for hosting Helen today, Fo!

AC

Anna Campbell said...

Cindy, seriously these are wonderful stories. So glad I had a chance to introduce them to you. Interesting about meeting the girl from the island. I must admit I've always had a thing about islands. I thought everyone did, but apparently not.

Loucinda McGary aka Aunty Cindy said...

LOL, Fo!
I ADORE islands! But my first choice is usually of the tropical variety, with scantily clad beach boys bringing me fruity drinks with little umbrellas. ;-)

AC

Anna Campbell said...

How did I know that about you, AC? Perhaps the way you bought the cabana boys leis for their last Christmas presents!

Loucinda McGary aka Aunty Cindy said...

Yes, I'm afraid I'm rather transparent. I'd never make it as a devious spy. :-P

Oh, and meant to say to Helen: SUPER CONGRATS on your Rita win!! How very exciting! Tell us more about it.

AC

Anna Campbell said...

Yes, Helen, how did it feel to stand up there and win a RITA? It must have been an unforgettable experience!

Deb said...

Congrats on your releases, Helen! I, too, like the map you shared here. I was on Mackinac Island many years ago and was enchanted by the charm of it's old-time atmosphere. Oh, and the fudge that is made on Mackinac Island is scrumptious!

I've always wanted to visit Prince Edward Island. My sister has been there (her MIL is a native and there was a family reunion on PEI on summer). I love thinking about Anne Shirley and Gilbert Blythe walking along the roads near Green Gables.

Anna Campbell said...

Deb, I'd love to see Prince Edward Island too. Apparently there's a whole Anne of Green Gables industry there! I've wanted to see Mackinac island since I saw Somewhere in Time. That has to be one of the most romantic films EVER!

flchen1 said...

Ooh, I need to catch up with Helen's Mirabelle series--I loved her previous Supers, which were amazing. Everything you said, Anna--emotional, gripping, very lovely reads! Glad to hear about this series and the exciting updates!

Anna Campbell said...

Hey, Fedora, so happy to meet another fan of Helen's. She really does that emotional punch UNBELIEVABLY well, doesn't she? I just devour her books in one go, can't put them down. Definitely check out the Mirabelle books - there's quite a collection now. I bet you love them!

Marie said...

Hello Helena! Love the map and SOMEWHERE IN TIME has to be in my top 10 list of favorite movies EVER! Love the map idea for your books, it makes tons of sense and is also helpful to readers, even if it is a fictional town! If I won, I'd HAVE to pick "FIRST COME TWINS" since my twins came first 34 years ago, yesterday!...omg I'm old!

Congrats on your RITA and the 3 new books coming out in the next 3 months.

Marie said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Anna Campbell said...

Marie, isn't Somewhere in Time just the most gorgeous film? It always makes me howl like a baby. Do you remember that last scene on the verandah at the Grand Hotel? Whaaaaaahhhh! And congratulations on your wonderful twins!

Helen said...

Well done Anna (Bite Club) have fun with him

I hang my head in shame and say that I haven't read any of your books YET Helen but that will change I so love the sound of them and The Island sounds great I love the sound of cold and brutal in winter LOL and the summer sounds great. I would love to live on an Island like this thinking of all those days with great heroes to be kept warm by and lazy summer days.

Love the map so neat I wish I could visit in person a long way from Oz, I will be trying to get the books and I want to read them in order off to check the website out and get a list.

Thanks Anna for inviting Helen today.

Have Fun
Helen
PS Great name Helen LOL

Anna Campbell said...

Snort, Helen. Well, you know only the BEST people are called Helen. Hold on, no, that's not right. The best people are called ANNA!!!! Oh, maybe Anna and Helen! LOL!

You'll love these books. I think they're right up your alley. And Helen writes a wonderful hero!

Helen said...

LOL Anna of course

I have just checked your website out Helen love those pictures from the Island and the cat and dog Snickers gotta read these books LOL so as I can visit.

Have Fun
Helen

Anna Campbell said...

Hey, Helen, let's get side by side rooms in the bed and breakfast! Wouldn't we have fun?

Helen said...

I'll be in that Anna Helen can take us on a tour of the Island and we get to meet all those wonderful heroes whoo hoo

Have Fun
Helen

Anna Campbell said...

We might have to take a gun to keep the heroines out of our hair, Helen!

Helen said...

We will have to do something to keep them for ourselves

Have Fun
Helen

Sheree said...

Awesome map! Maps help the readers to place the characters and action in their minds. Thank you!

Love "somewhere in Time"!

Beth Andrews said...

So glad you're with us today, Helen! I'm so excited about your new releases - like Anna, I'm a big fan of your stories *g*

What a fabulous map! I would love to live on Mirabelle Island and I definitely love reading your stories set there :-)

barb said...

well done Anna (bite club)

Congrats on your books Helen... I like to see maps sp I can place where things are ... I will have to add these to my buy list.

Hey Anna I usually share a room with Helen when we go away so I had better join you LOL

Donna MacMeans said...

Congrats on snagging the rooster Anna (Bite Club) and welcome to the lair - Helen!

When I saw your map, I thought of Put-in-Bay in Lake Erie. Like Mackinac, you can cover the whole island in a short time with a golf cart but it's not as well known outside of Ohio and Michigan.

The books sound fabulous! Reading a hot story on a small mythical island sounds like a perfect summer read. How cool that you have the three releases set so close together. Makes it great to keep one's head in the world. I'll be watching for these.

j. barrett said...

wow, do you think you will use the map again, the idea?
i'd be happy with any books, large print is good, kindle is ok, regular print-just takes me longer to read.

thanks for having the contest,
julie

Helen Brenna said...

Wow, look what happens when I'm in LaLa Land sleeping!

Morning everyone! Thanks again for having me visit today, ladies and for being so welcoming. Anna what a lovely intro. I'm blushing from head to toe. :)

Anna (BC) congrats on the Rooster award!!

Helen Brenna said...

So glad the general consensus is the map is good!

Loucinda, Mirabelle is a bit bigger than Mackinac, but still has a very, very small school. That's part of the charm of writing these stories is that the island is small enough that I can really develop the secondary characters and they show up again in books, too, not just previous H & Hs.

Anna C, yes, I imagine the woods on the north end of the island to be a bit larger and thicker, as well. One of the challenges in this project has been trying to relay my vision to the artist. Sometimes we hit the nail on the head and other times the hammer slips a bit.

Not familiar with Put-in-Bay, Donna, but that doesn't surprise me. During my research, I was so surprised to see how many islands there are in the various Great Lakes. And there's so much history to all of them!

Glad to be here today!

Trish Milburn (Tricia Mills) said...

Hey, Helen, good to see you here. That is really cool how you got an artist to render your imaginary world. Makes it more real, doesn't it?

And congrats on your upcoming releases.

May said...

Love the map! I went to MacKinac Island a few yrs ago. The hotel and the place were really as pretty as the movie.... It's terrific place to visit... Not sure about living there though. I would be really bored after a few weeks...

Eli Yanti said...

the map is look awesome. this is a good idea to put the map in book and i think you are the first author that put the map in book. like it ^^

MsHellion said...

That looks like so much fun! Is it a tourist economy then?

I love the map; when I read, I do like to see maps of where stuff is laid out so I can really get a sense of the place. I sometimes like to read books set in St. Louis because sometimes they'll go in neighborhoods or down streets I recognize.

This is ironic because I don't draw maps of the places I write about, nor do I really set my books in places I'm intimately familiar with--and yet I prefer that sort of safety anchoring. Maybe I should get it a shot. :)

And I am WAY curious how the couple works it out where she had to stay and he had to go...I totally get that, and yet I wonder how they can make it work out.

Helen Brenna said...

Hi Trish! Yep, the map makes it more real. But it's NOT. I promise. There's no Mirabelle Island! LOL

May, it's that island fever thing. A lot of people feel that way on islands, including me. Great place to visit. Wouldn't want to live there. Except in my head, that is!

Thanks Eli!

Susan F. said...

I love the map -- it's a great way for me to visualize where people are in the stories :-)

I do have a question -- how do you enter for one of the three backlist titles? I didn't see a contest tab, or anything that says "enter here". I expect I just didn't read the instructions right....

Kate Carlisle said...

Good morning and welcome to the Lair, Helen! Hey, I was just reading RT Book Review's *Top Pick* review of REDEMPTION AT MIRABELLE yesterday! It sounded so appealing, I added the book to my BUY list--and now here you are. Coincidence? No! The fact is, Ms. Campbell can read my mind! Scary but true. :-)

Your map is great! I'm about to visit your website to see it again and check out all the earlier books in the MIRABELLE series. I think readers--like me!--enjoy any little extra thing that will bring us closer to the world our favorite characters live in.

Congratulations on winning the RITA. I can't wait to get lost in this series. And thanks to Anna for bringing you to the Lair!

Ooh, and congrats to Anna (Bite Club) for snagging the rooster today! I don't think he BITES much, unless you're withholding Tim Tams from him. ;-)

Janga said...

Anna C, you and I shared our enthusiasm for Helen's books at the Romance Dish recently. Remember?

I've read all the Mirabelle books. I read The Pursuit of Jesse this week and now eagerly await Her Sure Thing and Redemption at Mirabelle.

And the map is great, Helen.

scarlet wilson said...

LOVE the map, it's absolutely gorgeous. I've been following the mirabelle stories and think it captures the magic of the island perfectly.
Congratulations on your win Helen!

Nancy said...

AnnaBC, congratulations on nabbing the Golden Rooster!

Helen, welcome to our Lair! I grew up in a small town, so I have a weakness for them. Mirabelle Island sounds great! I love books with maps, probably because so many of the SFF books I read have them in the front. Having a picture of the place ih my head is nice.

Setting can add a lot to a book, or it can just be an Anywhere backdrop. Sounds as though you've turned the island into an important part of your stories. You must have if Anna's gushing like this. *g*. She isn't usually a gusher.

jorobertson said...

Whooo hooo, another lovely guest courtesy of our own FoAnna. Welcome, Helen!

Mirabelle Island sounds like a place I could learn to love!

I didn't know that about the filming of
Somewhere in Time. That's one of my favorite movies.

Jo's Daughter said...

Somewhere in Time, is one of my fav movies :D The hotel is gorgeous & I dreamed of visiting it many times.

I really like the little map it gives you a great idea of where everthing is.

Di said...

I love Somewhere in Time - I have the cassette of the soundtrack somewhere. I'll have to pull it out (course it generally makes me tear up). Reading about a real place in a book always makes me want to travel there. But most of the time I just have to do it vicariously thru books like these.

Helen Brenna said...

Hey, Ms Hellion. Yep, Mirabelle is primarily a tourist economy. Restaurants, charter fishing operations, hotels and B & Bs. Some people just like living there and have other businesses, like the police chief, Garrett Taylor, (NEXT COMES LOVE) has started up a furniture building business and he ships out his product.

If you want to find out about Sophie and Noah, you'll have to read FIRST COME TWINS! lol

Helen Brenna said...

Hi Susan, nice to "see" you here! You're entered just by commenting. I'm not sure how the Bandits pick winners, but it'll likely be posted here sometime this weekend.

Hi Kate! Yep, REDEMPTION AT MIRABELLE, my August book listed here did get a TOP PICK from RT. Pretty cool. Thanks for reminding me!

I confess, though, that I haven't yet updated my website. Am planning on that now!

Helen Brenna said...

Thanks Janga and Scarlett!

Nancy, I grew up in a small town, too, and I think that's one of the reasons why I chose this setting. Having fun tripping down memory lane!

And Anna is a sweetheart! I LOVE her books, too, so the gushing feelings are very mutual!!!

Helen Brenna said...

Hi Jo and Jo's daughter!

Di, I think the soundtrack for Somewhere in Time was really popular. Off the top of my head, I can't remember the songs. Terrible, I know!

Off to update my website with the map and it's progress ...

ClaudiaGC said...

Love the map! I really like it when an author creates such a fictional world. It's always nice to "come back" to it and as a reader you kind of know the place already and can dive straight into the story. And it's always nice to encounter characters and places from previous books.

Pat Cochran said...

The more I know about a story, from its
characters to its physical make-up, the more I am able to "get into" the book. Your map of the island aids in that manner. The legend will be a great help also.

Could I live on an island? I have lived
30 or so miles from Galveston Island all my life. We have spent a LOT of time on the island, especially since our Dad loved the fishing there. It's great for fun and vacations, but I'm
so used to the accessibility of every
thing in Houston!

Anna Campbell said...

Sheree, I love the music in SOMEWHERE IN TIME too. Just the sound of that's enough to have me bawling like a lost calf!

Anna Campbell said...

Beth, how cool you're another of Helen's fans!

Anna Campbell said...

Barb, I don't think it would be a party without you. Just don't forget your heroine-scaring popgun!

Anna Campbell said...

Donna, definitely grab these books. And I love the sound of that island you mentioned.

Anna Campbell said...

Julie, that's a good question.

Helen, do you have any end point in mind for the Mirabelle books or are you just going to follow where the muse leads you?

Anna Campbell said...

Hey, Helen, EVERY word of that info is sincere. I'm so glad I discovered your books!

Anna Campbell said...

Hi Trish! I've been really looking forward to hosting Helen!

Anna Campbell said...

May, I suspect winter on one of those Great Lakes islands could be really cruel too. But I'd love to see Mackinac in the summer!

Anna Campbell said...

Eli, I love those value added extras in books like cast lists and acknowledgements and maps.

Anna Campbell said...

Helly, one of the things I love about Helen's book is that she doesn't skimp when it comes to working out the conflict. There aren't any magic solutions - it's more like real life where there has to be compromise on both sides.

Anna Campbell said...

See, Helen, this is what I mean by island people? I never get island fever. I get MAINLAND fever!!! I think in a former life I was a lighthouse keeper on some isolated lump of rock somewhere!

Anna Campbell said...

Susan, just by commenting you've entered the draw. We like our chats in the lair so it's a way to draw people to venture in and say hello! It's all VERRRRRRRRY sneaky!

Anna Campbell said...

Kate, your mind is an EXTREMELY interesting place to be! It's almost like being on a great island ;-)

Helen, congrats on the RT Top Pick for Redemption at Mirabelle. I pre-ordered all three of the new books when I realized they were coming out back to back. Her Sure Thing should be here next week with a bit of luck. I do love the Book Depository!

Anna Campbell said...

Janga, I do indeed remember our fan girl swoons over Helen's books. I love talking about great books over at the Dishes - I'm doing the Maisie Dobbs series this month. Have you read them? They're WONDERFUL!

Anna Campbell said...

Scarlet, so glad you're another fan. Yeah, I loved seeing the map too although I really think the forest should have been bigger and wilder and thicker - and full of sexy reclusive writers!

Anna Campbell said...

Nancy, the island really is a character in the stories. Hey, I'm not gushing - I'm giving you a reasoned critique, LOL!

Anna Campbell said...

Jo, I think Christopher Reeve was wonderful in Somewhere in Time. Such a tragic loss.

Anna Campbell said...

Hi Jo's Daughter! Lovely to see you. I'd love to stay at that hotel. I went to the creepy Shining hotel outside Denver last year. It's similar sort of architecture but definitely feels like bad things are lurking in the woodwork.

Anna Campbell said...

Di, knowing Helen based Mirabelle on Mackinac just makes me more eager to go there. Yeah, that soundtrack is gorgeous, isn't it?

Anna Campbell said...

Ooh, Helen, aren't you nice? Thank you! Actually I love writing really strong settings in my books - it's kind of like vicarious travelling, isn't it?

Anna Campbell said...

Claudia, there's a couple of eccentric older characters in the Mirabelle books who I always enjoy catching up with again.

chey said...

Mirabelle Island looks like a great place.
Congrats on your releases!

Anna Campbell said...

Pat, that's the problem with an island, the accessibility, isn't it? I remember when I was travelling around some of the more remote Hebridean islands in 2004, bad weather could actually strand you. And western Scotland gets some seriously bad weather!!!!

Anna Campbell said...

Thanks for swinging by, Chey!

Anna Campbell said...

Wow, I need one of the famous ice-creams from the Mirabelle ice-cream parlor to recover from all this partying!

Helen Brenna said...

The more I think about it, the happier I am that I decided to get this map done! Put a part of it's evolution, included a new map with some of the legend, up on my website if anyone's interested.

http://www.helenbrenna.com/Mirabelle_Island_Map.php

Anna, thanks again for inviting me to visit today. You guys have been great!

Helen Brenna said...

Missed a question ... do I have an end point in mind? You mean like an end to the series?

Oddly enough, stories on Mirabelle keep popping into my head. The August book was supposed to be the last, but I just submitted proposals for 2 more Mirabelle books. Well, one that starts on Mirabelle and another that takes place on Mirabelle.

We'll have to wait and see if HQ wants more of the island, or not!

Helen Brenna said...

Thanks Chey!

It's the waffle cones, Anna. Double scoops in homemade waffle cones! lol

Anna Campbell said...

My pleasure, Helen. And it's always nice when we get a mixture of current fans and new blood...uh, READERS dropping in.

Anna Campbell said...

Ooh, fabulous! More Mirabelle! I'm glad Sean's getting the girl at last, by the way - he really hasn't been lucky in love!

Anna Campbell said...

MMMMM, waffle cones (kinda like Homer with donuts!).

Helen Brenna said...

Had fun visiting today, people. Thanks for having me!!
Helen

Anna Campbell said...

Thanks to Helen and everyone who swung around today. What a fun day in the lair! Looks like the map took us right to the cocktail bar!

Don't forget to check tomorrow to see who won the three books that Helen very generously offered to our commenters today.

Kandy Shepherd said...

Hi Anna and Helen, I confess I haven't heard of the Mirabelle books. But they certainly sound like books I would enjoy. I must investigate!