Books, For Readers, More of Me

When a Review Makes you Cry.

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Someone bought More of Me!

I have had some amazing reviews for More of Me. The Book Bag,  Lovereading4kids, Serendipity Reviews, Guardian Children’s books all rated it highly: one of the book sellers in my local Waterstones is pushing for it to be book of the month. Generally it’s been really well received. There’s been some not great reviews too – one on  a  website I love, Luna’s Little Library.   It smarts a bit, but there you go, not all books/characters appeal to all people. I am so grateful to them,  for not only taking the time to read but also to share their thoughts with others.


I say that , but the poor reviews, the “meh” reviews, stick in you like a glass splinter – and for a while, I googled reviews obsessively – even, despite stern advice from other authors, checking out Goodreads ( as a reader I’ve always hung out on GR so it’s hard to let that one go!) I worried endlessly about letting down my publisher, my agent – my family – all the people who have invested in me and my book. My mood could swing up or down depending on what someone had said about More of Me. It was ridiculous. I was ridiculous.

And then I had this message – not a public review but sent directly to me, and perspective was restored:

Picture this, I receive a book for Christmas, called Slash, an autobiography of the greatest man on earth). 457 pages on, it’s the 16th May. I finally finish the book – you could say I am a slow reader, aha! I haven’t read a fiction book in years – biographies of people I love have become the norm. Your book, a gift,  is sitting on my shelf  still unread. I have a choice between More of Me and the Beatles. Out of guilt, I pick your book to read (best decision ever made) and within minutes, I’m hooked. 17th May arrives and I am having a super bad day at school but your book was there to get me through it, I was in it with Teva! In the bus, I’m reading it, ignoring my gut feeling that everyone is looking at me, no one reads these days, it’s not “cool”. I get home and only have a few pages left. What is happening? Am I actually choosing to read a book over playing the guitar or watching something on Netflix?

Your book has brought me back to my childhood of actually wanting to read, it was incredible! I can not thank you enough, your book was amazing, HF Age 15

I am still tearful reading it. Because this is what matters.  Making a difference to one girl, on one day and maybe for a bit longer. This is the ONLY reason to cry at a review. Everything else is petals on the wind.

More of Me is available in all UK bookstores – and if it isn’t, you can ask them for it!









For Readers, Writing Advice

Book Blogs and Book Bloggers

It’s all work, work, work…

This week I had the honour of being part of The Notes from The Slushpile team, along with Teri Terry,  who attended a Book Trust Bloggers Brunch. The idea was to learn more about what The Book Trust do . I knew they were involved in the Laureate scheme and I knew about Book Start, giving books to all  preschool children. But I had no idea about the amazing Letterbox scheme, designed to get books to children in care so they can build their own libraries and the new Story Hunters scheme to assist under-privileged children in the same way.  In the days when our public libraries are under threat, it was so great to see there was a broad government funded organisation really supporting the importance of books. I hope to be sharing more of what they do in the future.

A Sample Story Hunters Pack

Books and libraries are so much a part of my life, it’s hard to imagine how anyone couldn’t recognise how important they are, especially when you like to hang out with the UKYA crowd.

With Sita Brahmachari  former Writer-in-Residence for Book Trust

So, I’ve been thinking a lot about blogging and bloggers, particularly about the UKYA people. You’d be hard pressed to find a more friendly and passionate group of readers and writers.  They get together on twitter under various hashtags #ukya #YAtakeover. Probably the most dynamic of these chats is organised by blogger Lucy Powrie under the #ukyachat tag. It usually happens on a Friday night and I usually miss it because I am out doing this:


But when I have holidays or when, hoorah, it’s bumped to a Saturday night, I get to join in. I absolutely love it  – so many people sharing your passion, even though we’re all sat behind a computer or a phone I can see their hands flapping as they recommend a book or excitedly share some thing we all know from some book we’ve all read. I can see it because that’s what I’m doing!

As we  gathered to chat this week, I was reminded of a tweet from someone asking how to find book bloggers. It was a good question – if you don’t know, you don’t know right? So here’s a good place to start:

Follow  hashtags on twitter:  the ones above and also these #bookbloggers, #tbr #books and #yabooks .

Google them! To make it even easier, I’ve made a list of as many as I could remember before I had to cook dinner. I even included the one who didn’t really like my book *sniffle*, because that’s OK, not everyone is going to like every book or every character – that would be weird.  Besides, she didn’t hate it, she just didn’t connect with Teva, which seriously, I’m fine about it, really…


Okay, enough of that. Book Bloggers! There are heaps of them, please add more in the comments and correct me if I’ve got any information wrong- I thought it might be good to add Instagram links too – let me know if you’d like to.

Here’s the list so far – In alphabetical order according to Twitter name:

Twitter Blog



@emilymaylowrey WWW.EMILYLOWREY.COM



giphy (2)Who’ve I missed? Over to you!

PS This fab list  has already been done by Mr Ripley’s  Enchanted  Books: Book Bloggers.

On my goodness and there is this amazing spreadsheet from @snugglingonthesofa SpreadsheetofWonder