About the author
Emily Williams Lives by the seaside in West Sussex with her family and a large menagerie of small pets. After graduating from Sussex University with a BA in Psychology, Emily trained as a primary school teacher and teaches in a local school.
Letters to Eloise in her debut novel. For more information about Emily and her upcoming novels, please follower her on Twitter @EmilyRMWilliams
Publication Date: 17 February 2017
ISBN: paperback 978-0-9957421-0-9 (also available in ebook format)
Publisher: Lutino Publications
Copy provided by: Author
Blurb ( as seen on Amazon)
When post-graduate student Flora falls unexpectedly pregnant during her final year studies she hits a huge predicament; continue a recent affair with her handsome but mysterious lecture who dazzles her with love letters taken from the ancient tale of ‘Abelard and Heloise’, chase after the past with her estranged first love?
But will either man be there to support her during the turmoil ahead?
‘Banish me, therefore, forever from your heart’, Abelard to Heloise.
Letters to Eloise is the heart-wrenching debut epistolary novel by Emily Williams; a love story of misunderstandings, loss and betrayal but ultimately the incredible bond between mother and child.
Before I start my review I would firstly like to congratulate lovely Emily on her beautifully written debut novel, and secondly to say thank-you to Emily for asking me to review Letters to Eloise on Marie’s Book Boutique, I was over joyed when you asked!
When I saw the front cover of Letters to Eloise I adored it instantly! Looking at it now makes me want to just want to grab my kindle and read it all again! I love the way the pregnant lady is a siloet with a love heart on her belly; which I really found endearing and beautiful. The pettles pressed into the paper effect is really a lovely touch, also the title of the book is written in a hand writing affect which give it a detonate personal touch. I’m going to say this front cover has to be my favourite right now. Its perfect!!!!
Letters to Eloise is a beautiful story about un expecting pregnancy, motherhood, letters to unborn child, true love, lover’s, friendship, university life and some misunderstandings. The story is packed full of emotion throughout which had me glued to my kindle.
In this story Flora a post graduate who finds out that she is unexpectedly pregnant, she feels the only way she can get her thoughts, feelings throughout her pregnancy, and her life at university so she starts writing letters to her unborn baby. I think the author Emily has very cleverly intertwined the letters with a few recollections, which joins the story together, it’s a very unique way to tell a story and bind it together.
I really enjoyed all the characters in this story especially Flora’s best friend Brook from America. She is so supportive to Flora, only has her best interests at heart. Every girl need’s a Brook in their life right? Then their’s Flora’s two love interests her first River; who was in his last year at university studying photography when they met. I adored this relationship and watching there grow, I found myself their relationship egging them on and willing them to find each other again. When Flora thinks her relationship with River was over she got wooed by Tate a lecturer at the university. Tate is a very wistful and poetic character and doesn’t really give to much away about his life. I felt he enchanted Flora with love letters into a romantic notion of a relationship. When Flora goes home to tell her parents, they were so supportive inparticul her father, her mother is a bit fie to begin with. Her father writes Flora the most beautiful letter to say how pleased and proud of her he was.
You get a sence in the story that Flora holds back somethings in her letters, which totally entreged me and make me so engrossed in the book that I didn’t notice anything else that was happening in my home! I think at the author Emily very cleverly ties all the lose end’s together. ( I will just say you will need to have a tissue at the end)
The story is written in three parts as in the three trimesters of a pregnancy and I really found it fascinating throughout the way the information of the baby’s growth and development during the pregnancy was amazing and insightful.
I really enjoyed this book so very much, the plot, characters, and pace is truly wonderfully written. I loved reading about Elosie’s growth and development as she grows which I think adds a nice touch to the story. I thought the little baby foot prints throughout were sooooo cute and found my self going awwwww!
Emily you have truly written a wonderful book here and I adored it so much; such a joy to read and full of emotion! I would highly recommend this book and just so you know Emily I will defiantly be looking out for more of you books in the future!
Today Marie’s Book Boutique gives Letters to Elosie by Emily Williams a big 5 sparkly stars!!!!
Q and A with Emily Williams
Firstly I would like to thank Emily for joining us today on Marie’s Book Boutique for a Q and A! And also I would like to congratulate you on your debut novel Letters To Eloise, at truly wonderful story!
Thank you so much! That is very kind. It is such a pleasure to be on your blog, thank you for inviting me. I do hope you enjoy reading more about me and learning about Letters to Eloise.
What gave you inspiration for Letters to Eloise?
There were many inspirations for Letters to Eloise. I had been writing plot notes in a notebook for a while, but none of the stories really grabbed me. Then suddenly, this one came to mind and I jotted down a rough timeline and plot. Looking back at those notes, most of the ideas for Letters to Elosie came from those initial jottings. Different aspects of the story are inspired by different parts of my own life, for example, I based the university on my own experiences in halls at both Leicester and Sussex University.
As for why I chose the original idea, or how it came to me, I’m not sure. I was just in a time in my own life where I wanted to settle down and start a family. The novel must have kicked stared something as I fell pregnant with my first child a couple of months after finishing the first draft!
How long did it take you to write? (from writing to publication day)
Writing Letters to Elosie took a very long time! I started it over four years ago. I set myself a deadline and stuck to it, booking myself into a writers’ workshop at Regents College in London as the motivation to finish. It took three months from the initial plot ideas to complete the finish draft. Then I fell pregnant…
As Flora was also pregnant, I couldn’t bring myself to edit the novel. You will understand why when you read it!
The book was put on hold (in the meantime it was beta and proof read) until I returned to all the editing notes after having my second child last July.
Therefore, it has been a long process but I have learnt a massive amount along the way.
Did you plan the story out or did you just write?
It has been different for each book, but for Letters to Elosie I was very disciplined. I found previously that many unplanned stories would dwindle in the middle or run it’s course without a proper ending, so I planned Letters to Elosie differently.
I wrote detailed notes on each character, plotted the timeline with dates and a guideline for every letter Flora wrote. I spent time just post-it noting any ideas the gathering it all together into one big chapters’ grid.
I wrote the book, letter by letter, but not in any particular order. I found that this was the best way to overcome writers block; I just picked which letter I felt like writing. It did mean that I had to change the initial overview plan several times as the story took me ‘off grid’! Several characters developed further, as the story unfolded, which changed the plot outline a little, and added new elements.
I also had to go through with a fine toothcomb to check I had not slipped up and made plot holes due to chopping and changing. I really enjoyed the process.
Do you hand write or type straight onto the computer?
I started some of the letters into my notebook handwritten and then later typed them up. When I got into the flow of writing the letters, they were then all on the laptop.
But the initial ideas were all handwritten, on post-its and scribbles in the notebook, which I love to look at still.
What’s your favorite all time book? and why?
I’ am an all round reader, and don’t usually stick to a particular genre so it is hard to choose an all time favourite book! Going by the tattiest books in my bookcase and therefore the most read, it would probably be The Horse Whisperer by Nicholas Evans. I am a huge lover of horses and his books has been a favorite from my teenage years. I am not however a fan of the film, which I feel rather spoilt the book.
My summer reads are probably lighter romantic novels. I have read many novels by Cecelia Ahern, The Gift being a particular favourite. I love the cover and prose of The Childrens Book, by As Byatt, but this is more of a heavy read for when I have time to dedicate.
Having two children, I usually need to find novels now that I can read in parts without spoiling the flow of the plot, as usually I like to sit down and read a whole book in one go! I have always loved One Day by David Nicholls, Dexter is the kind of character, and man, I can fall in love with. He is human and flawed but also has wit and charm.
Which author has influenced you writing?
There are probably too many to name. As I read so many different books and have learnt many different styles of writing. I can’t possibly choose one author.
I was given Stephen Kings On Writing as a present from my sister, and think his story from a teenager dreaming of being an author to becoming a very successful writer was greatly inspirational. It gave me the motivation to finish my own novel.
What’s your best time of day to write?
Always in the evenings, if any ideas or sentences spring to mind during the day, I note them down in my notebook or on my phone so they are not forgotten.
What do you like to do in your spare time, when your not writing?
I have a very busy life and there is not much time for writing! I have two young children that have me running around for the majority of the day. We have two very active dogs too that need daily walks in the countryside or on the beach, and we have two horses. My son adores visiting the ponies each day and exploring the woods next to their field.
Other animals include chickens, cocktails that I breed and love taming, a cat, chinchillas and other small pets such as guinea pigs.
I do love being in the garden, especially with the summer approaching. I am busy planting my seeds into their trays, whilst my son and chickens behind me are busy destroying my plant borders!
My spare time is very busy but enjoyable. I also work part time in a local school teaching.
If you could give three pieces of advice to any aspiring author’s out there, what would they be?
- Belive in yourself!
- Research how to edit and format before you start. I wasted hours, possibly days, scrolling through my novel repeatedly, correcting simple mistakes that I didn’t need to, due to formatting and editing incorrectly and sometimes in the wrong order! Example of some mistakes were pressing the tab button for indents, incorrect speechmarks, spaces after full stops, endashes and em dashes, etc.
- Start early with everything! Lay out a plan for a realistic release day, and then work backwards with dates. Remember that it takes time for beta readers to get back to you, edits take time to correct and that everything needs to be ready before formatting for eBook and paperback. Decide what to market and have promotions etc well in advance of the final release day. Get advance reader copies out early. I have made mistakes along my journey but learnt so much with Letters to Eloise and I am so delighted and proud of the end results, finally! Best of luck with you own books!
Before you go, I would like to thank you very much Emily for doing a Q and A today on Marie’s Book Boutique, it’s been an absolute pleasure. I hope your getting spoiled today being Mothers Day and all!
Happy Mother’s Day to all the wonderful mum’s out there!
Thanks so much for having me today on Marie’s Book Boutique. It has been lovely to chat to you about my writing. Have a wonderful Mothers Day! Hope all the mums out there are getting spoilt today and have their feet up.