Hannah Richell, author of Secrets of the Tides, reveals her five fiction favourites…
by Michelle Magorian
I read this book as a young girl.
It’s the story of a young boy evacuated from wartime London to the rural home of a grumpy old man. Goodnight Mister Tom is a children’s book but it showed me a very adult side of the world – that parents aren’t always nice to their children, that War is a very ugly thing, and that words alone, written onto a stark white page can be enough to move a person to tears.
I think it’s the first book that made me cry and I can still remember the glowing book review I wrote for homework.
by Jilly Cooper
Riders is one of my best-loved novels from my teens and I have re-read it at least twice since.
Jilly Cooper is an amazing storyteller. Her books are so addictive – the ultimate page-turners – which is all the more remarkable when you consider the huge cast of characters she juggles in each story.
Riders is my perfect beach read – the sort of novel to be gobbled up while lying on a sun lounger. Sheer, unadulterated fun.
by Dodie Smith
From the moment charismatic narrator Cassandra Mortmain opened the novel with the line: “I write this sitting in the kitchen sink”, I was hooked.
And what’s not to love about this story of an eccentric family wrestling with poverty in a crumbling old castle and a girl negotiating her way through impending adulthood, literary ambition and first love?
I Capture the Castle is a joyous, romantic read and a book that will forever have pride of place on my bookshelves.
by David Mitchell
David Mitchell’s dizzy-making imagination and talent for words is awe-inspiring. I love Cloud Atlas for its dazzling structure. It is a true literary journey, both powerful and playful, and so darn clever I probably haven’t understood the half of it.
I was lucky enough to work on the marketing campaign for this novel while in London and it was one of those career highlights I now look back on and pinch myself about. I’m intrigued about the forthcoming movie – I hope the filmmakers do the book justice!
by Maggie O’Farrell
I’ve adored every one of Maggie O’Farrell’s novels but I read her most recent not long after I had become a mum and the themes of The Hand that First Held Mine resonated so deeply with me.
I love Maggie O’Farrell’s sparse, honest prose and the way she can weave a story like a puzzle, slowly revealing layers until the full truth is exposed to the reader.
To me, O’Farrell is a modern writing goddess.
by Hannah Richell
A stunning debut novel: a dramatic family saga with a dark thread of suspense lurking at its heart.
Every family has its secrets. Some are small, like telling a white lie or snooping through a private drawer. Others are more serious, like infidelity and betrayal. And some secrets are so terrible they must be hidden away in a deep, dark place, for if they ever came to light, they would surely tear a family apart
The Tides are a family full of secrets. Returning to Clifftops, the rambling family house perched high on the Dorset coastline, youngest daughter Dora hopes for a fresh start, for herself and the new life she carries. But can long-held secrets ever really be forgiven? And even if you can forgive, can you ever really learn to love again?
Secrets of the Tides is the spellbinding debut from Hannah Richell, a rich and compelling family drama with a dark thread of suspense at its heart.
About the Author
Hannah Richell lives in Sydney, Australia. Secrets of the Tides is her beautiful and haunting debut novel.
About the Contributor
While still in his twenties, John Purcell opened a second-hand bookshop in Mosman, Sydney, in which he sat for ten years reading, ranting and writing. Since then he has written, under a pseudonym, a series of very successful novels, interviewed hundreds of writers about their work, appeared at writers’ festivals, on TV (most bizarrely in comedian Luke McGregor’s documentary Luke Warm Sex) and has been featured in prominent newspapers and magazines. Now, as the Director of Books at booktopia.com.au, Australia’s largest online bookseller, he supports Australian writing in all its forms. He lives in Sydney with his wife, two children, three dogs, five cats, unnumbered gold fish and his overlarge book collection.