Monday, 5 February 2018

# 5 #Monday Meanders with #Nicola Slade

Today our #Monday Meanders are down in the south of England.

Nicola Slade
I'm delighted to say that it's the turn of author, Nicola Slade, to describe to us favourite locations that she's used in her novels. 

The location she describes is one that I really need to revisit. I've not visited the area since the 1970s though I was in the Wiltshire area in the 1980s; Portsmouth and the Isle of Wight in the 1990s; I holidayed in Kent, both Sussex's and Surrey in c.2007; and I was further north in Hampshire in 2015. 

Are these sufficient clues yet? If not, read on...

Truly full of history, the location Nicola describes is a locale I've recently been getting virtually acquainted with. I've read a few novels recently that have been set in the general geographic location that Nicola describes for us but reading about some place never quite matches up to actual visiting. Nonetheless,  my recent read of The House at Ladywell made a great impression on me because Nicola describes it so very well!

Welcome to my blog, Nicola! Please tell us about your chosen locations...

I live in Hampshire so all my books are set in and around Winchester and the small market town of Romsey. Why? Because I live about halfway between the two so research is easy, and because I love them both it’s a pleasure to wander round visualising my characters and stopping for coffee to make notes!
Jane Austen
Wikimedia Commons
I’m passionate about history and Winchester has lots of it from its pre-Roman beginnings; its association with King Alfred – it was his capital city; the cathedral built in the area of the Roman forum; and all the Jane Austen connections including the house where she spent the last days of her life and her grave in the cathedral.

My three Victorian mysteries feature Charlotte Richmond, a young Australian widow and Austen admirer, who arrives in Hampshire to live with the family of her late, unlamented husband, whose home is a village just outside the city. Charlotte just can’t help stumbling over the occasional corpse!

With permission from Nicola Slade- Winchester Banner

Winchester also features strongly in the contemporary Harriet Quigley mysteries, in which a recently-retired headmistress and her cousin and best-friend, the Reverend Sam Hathaway, find themselves mixed up in local murders. Sometimes these investigations are thrust upon them but mostly, as Harriet wryly admits, it’s her own fault for being naturally inquisitive. In Murder Fortissimo, their first outing, Sam has a pivotal scene in the cathedral and in A Crowded Coffin there’s actually a murder in one of the side chapels!

With permission -  Nicola Slade
The ancient market town of Romsey, which I renamed Ramalley, starred in my first novel, Scuba Dancing, a romantic comedy. 

My latest novel, The House at Ladywell, is set there and a lot of the history in the book has been ‘borrowed’ from the actual town, including the sale of the abbey to the town by the King’s Commissioners at the Dissolution of the Monasteries. 

This picture is of King John’s House, which isn’t the house in my book -  it’s even older than my fictional Tudor house and is where I held my paperback launch last November.

My Charlotte Richmond and Harriet Quigley mysteries are being reissued this Spring by Williams & Whiting.

Find my other books on Amazon and find out more about me at:

That's such a fabulous location for a book launch, Nicola! Yes, I must get back down and visit just Winchester...and its immediate surroundings.

Thank you for sharing the Winchester area with us today. Best wishes for you future writing projects and happy sales of currently available books. It sounds like the spring is going to be a very busy time for you! 


1 comment:

  1. That's great, Nancy. Thanks so much for inviting me and reminding me why I love living in this part of the world! And yes, do visit - I'll treat you to coffee at the Cathedral!


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