Sunday, June 25, 2017

Children's Books Ireland review Dad's Red Dress... and LOVE it!




Children's Books Ireland just published its review of Dad's Red Dress in Inís Magazine and it's wonderful. Feeling ridiculously happy right now, the glow hasn't worn off yet...

So, sorry, but I'm sharing it cos I love this book and it has been a long time in the making:

"Jessie Keane just wants her family to be normal… utterly, completely normal. Having moved from L.A. back to Ireland, normality would offer a chance to avoid the ‘looks’, the rumours and the bullying that she has dealt with in the past. But ‘normal’ is hardly possible. Not with a little sister who claims to have been abducted by the Virgin Mary (twice), a wildly contemporary artist stepmother and a creative architect father with a penchant for cross-dressing. As she tries to balance this eccentric, yet loving family, and what she hopes will be an ordinary school life, Jessie is put to the test when a new development shakes the façade she is working so hard to craft. She must stop this! Or so she thinks…
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When I picked up Dad’s Red Dress, I expected a book that was quirky, entertaining and funny. What I did not expect was a novel that spoke to the heart of what it means to grow up. Filled with vivid, genuine characters and complex, conflicting family drama, it is joyous, loving and truly unique among the vast canon of coming-of-age stories. Each character is intricately drawn. Difficult subject matter is handled with great sensitivity. The dialogue is realistic and relatable for any young person. And while the situation may be unusual, the emotional impact is not. It gives the reader much to consider about life, friendship, who we really are and what makes a family. Dad’s Red Dress is indeed humourous; a delight to read. Simply wonderful."
In Charlie's Bookshop, Galway
Review by Mary Esther Judy in Inís Mag for CBI.

http://childrensbooksireland.ie/review/dads-red-dress/



Dad's Red Dress is available from Amazon, Charlie's Bookshop in Galway, Maynooth Bookshop, Co. Kildare and via Paypal by contacting ljsedgwick66@gmail.com.

Monday, June 5, 2017

Guinea pigs - sorry, Beta Readers needed!

Are you interested in reading a new novel pre-publication and giving your thoughts on it?

I am looking for four beta readers for my new book. This means you're the first people to give it a reader's assessment and I can get a sense of anything that is or isn't working before I sign off and send it to print.

Provisionally called The Matchmaker, the book is about Angelica, a 14 year-old who lives with Mum (Molly) in an old hotel on a peninsula in Donegal. Deciding it's her fault that her mum is single, Angelica reasons that she can't rightly have a boyfriend herself until she fixes Molly up. So she sets up a dating website to matchmake her mum. All goes well, for everyone else in the town, except for Molly. A comedy of errors, coming of age story.

What I would be hoping to get is your thoughts on the book. In return, I can give you a reference for your CV if that's of use, a signed copy when the book comes out and my  lifelong and earnest appreciation.

Here's the opening, so you can see if it would interest you to read:


My name is Angelica Moone. I’m neither a vampire with gold eyes and the need to drain cute boy-bands of blood nor a werewolf. You could say my father was a whale but even that’s pushing it a bit. I live with my mum, Molly, in a private flat above the lobby of a hotel called The Drisogue Arms. It stares out over a rugged peninsula that elbows into the Atlantic on the most westerly coast of Donegal. This is the most westerly part of the west of Ireland, which is pretty far west, Europe-wise.

This makes for a lot of wind, rain and storms. We found an empty coffin once and a beach full of mannequin arms, all left handed… I’m sure there have been drugs washed up too and maybe a body or two but nobody will admit it.

Apparently, I’m “too young”.

Pointless to say I’m fourteen. People who say I’m too young smile when I say this, as if my response proves to them that they are completely right. But then they don’t know me. It’s not their fault.

I’ve been way ahead of them since the day I was born. 

(Pix courtesy of Creative Commons.)

Monday, May 29, 2017

Dad's Red Dress: reviews and feedback

on 9 May 2017
Lindsay Sedgewick is a genius...I couldn't put it down from once I started. The vibrant characters, the imagination, the joy of turning the next page...I loved it. Looking forward to the sequel....!

on April 25, 2017
Format: Kindle Edition
This is a very entertaining and engaging read written in an original and imaginative way. And it deals with quite a difficult subject really well through humour.

From the beginning of the book we become aware that Jessie’s family are not quite main- stream - Eva , Jessie’s stepmother is a breast sculptor, Laura, Jessie’s sister has a fixation with the Virgin Mary and insists on wearing a veil the whole time. But it not until we are into the second chapter that we become aware that Jessie’s father likes to wear women’s clothes and wants to have a sex change. And because the family have just moved to Ireland from LA, Jessie has a lot to cope with.

I felt that LIndsay got into the head of Jessie very well. She is a sensitive and imaginative teenager who has ordinary everyday teenage problems to deal with as well as her dad’s transexuality. The character of the school principal who is attracted to ‘Mandy’ adds plenty of humour to proceedings as does Laura, Jessie’s sister with her quirky ways and her unusual pets. There are plenty of humorous moments, one particularly hilarious one where Mandy’s chicken fillet comes flying out at a rugby match springs to mind. She balances humour and tension perfectly throughout the novel.

This book should appeal to all teenagers - Jessie is a typical teenager in many ways and as the novel progresses we get to know and like her better. We sympathise with her love for her father and her struggle to come to terms with ‘Mandy’. I became involved in her world where clouds take on a significance and her colourful way of thinking.

I would recommend this quirky and entertaining novel to anyone. It highlighted the problems that the children of transsexuals can encounter when their parents are transitioning. without preaching or making judgement.
on 20 April 2017
What a great story - sometimes sad, deeply thought provoking and often laugh out loud funny.

on 18 March 2017
I found "Dad's Red Dress" sparkling, charming and a very entertaining book.

on 9 February 2017
I've read this twice, as an advance reader copy, and as an ebook on my kindle. It's a great story for young adults, a coming of age themed novel, filled with complexity and featuring a wonderful family of characters, alternative in many ways, and yet, so relatable. Original and believable, every character is well developed and totally three dimensional. I loved the intricacies of each one, and Jessie is just a delight, having a beautiful relationship with her Dad. Jesse has a lot to deal with now that her family has moved to Ireland from the USA...weird little sister, new school, new friends, boys, bullying - oh, and did I mention her Dad? Read on...!

on 9 February 2017
From the very first paragraph, I was sucked into the colourful and crazy world of young Jessie Keane. Her exotic family exudes warmth and togetherness. and the reader is left in no doubt that this is a loving and safe environment for her and her sister. However, there is a 'secret' within the family, that is clear from the title of the book, and that secret threatens to unsettle Jessie's life and bring the bullies back to taunt her - again. This serious subject matter is dealt with sensitively by L.J. Sedgwick, and even better than that, it is uproariously funny. I found myself re-reading sentences and entire paragraphs over again, in pure joy. I haven't enjoyed a novel as much in years.

on 8 February 2017
Dad's Red Dress is a story for our times, and one that can be enjoyed by all of the family. The characters are vivid, the story is fresh, and the dialogue is sparkling. I can heartily recommend it.


READERS FEEDBACK

In London with actress Karen Connell

AND FROM THE WONDERFUL READERS....

It's a beautiful story excellently told...one of the best novels I've read in bloody ages. - Patrick Chapman, author of Slow Clocks of Decay

Just finished your book on Wednesday. I had a few tears at the last chapter. It's a great read I love that style of writing. Your very witty and creative! I'm on the look out for a sequel or your second publication! – N F

At times very funny and the subject matter deftly handled, it was hard to put down and always a pleasure to get back to. Can't wait for the sequel. – T O’B, 
On way to Norway with Jakki Moore

Enjoyed the novel very much. Funny, off-beat and convincing. –  M B 

It was a touching story, dealing with all sorts of issues.  Such beautiful characters in Jessie's family, I loved them all. You did it so well, I really wanted to see how they would all deal with it.  Beautifully in the end! –  K S

It's heartbreaking, heartwarming and brilliantly funny, all at the same time. – PG.
*sob* What a lovely ending... it hits all the emotional marks. *blows nose loudly on damp tissue, which promptly disintegrates.* I love it. T G.


Only 10% through but having a good giggle. – K McV

In Oz with Andrea Mangan
What a great story, filled with complexity - original and believable, every character so well developed and totally three dimensional. I loved the intricacies of each one, and Jessie is just a delight, I was with her all the way! A beautiful relationship with her Dad, and her little sister! It's wonderful, just wonderful!!  - Caroline Farrell, author of Arkyne and Lady Beth.  

Wednesday, May 24, 2017

Dad's Red Dress: now in Maynooth Bookshop

Huge thanks to Ursula Byrne in Maynooth Bookshop for taking Dad's Red Dress onto her shelves. They're signed and hungry to find new homes and readers...  

And in case that wasn't positive enough, I got this feedback from a writer and artist living in Scandinavia: 

I couldn't put it down from once I started. The vibrant characters, the imagination, the joy of turning the next page...I loved it! 😄🤓😁

I could relate to so much of it...Coming to live in Ireland from the US at about the same age...Thank you so much for creating such a gem....

Please tell me that you're bringing out the sequel soon!?!


I'm over the moon!! It has now been read by such a range of people, from a seven year-old who started reading it aloud to me last Sunday to several readers in their 70s, postmen to artists, teachers, scientists, filmmakers and writers of every ilk.... 

Working on a final heavy edit of my next two books and then, in June, I can dive into the sequel for Dad's Red Dress...
Dad's Red Dress can now be found in Maynooth Bookshop, Charlie Byrne's Bookshop in Galway, all the Kildare libraries, on Amazon and (in Ireland) directly from dadsreddress@lindsayjsedgwick.com (payment via Paypal).

Some other reviews:


This is a very entertaining and engaging read written in an original and imaginative way. And it deals with quite a difficult subject really well through humour.

From the beginning of the book we become aware that Jessie’s family are not quite main- stream - Eva , Jessie’s stepmother is a breast sculptor, Laura, Jessie’s sister has a fixation with the Virgin Mary and insists on wearing a veil the whole time. But it not until we are into the second chapter that we become aware that Jessie’s father likes to wear women’s clothes and wants to have a sex change. And because the family have just moved to Ireland from LA, Jessie has a lot to cope with.

I felt that Lindsay got into the head of Jessie very well. She is a sensitive and imaginative teenager who has ordinary everyday teenage problems to deal with as well as her dad’s transexuality. The character of the school principal who is attracted to ‘Mandy’ adds plenty of humour to proceedings as does Laura, Jessie’s sister with her quirky ways and her unusual pets. There are plenty of humorous moments, one particularly hilarious one where Mandy’s chicken fillet comes flying out at a rugby match springs to mind. She balances humour and tension perfectly throughout the novel.

This book should appeal to all teenagers - Jessie is a typical teenager in many ways and as the novel progresses we get to know and like her better. We sympathise with her love for her father and her struggle to come to terms with ‘Mandy’. I became involved in her world where clouds take on a significance and her colourful way of thinking.

I would recommend this quirky and entertaining novel to anyone. It highlighted the problems that the children of transsexuals can encounter when their parents are transitioning. without preaching or making judgement. - Kindle edition review on Amazon.com: 25/4/17
Dad's Red Dress in Budapest!

I've read this twice, as an advance reader copy, and as an ebook on my kindle. It's a great story for young adults, a coming of age themed novel, filled with complexity and featuring a wonderful family of characters, alternative in many ways, and yet, so relatable. Original and believable, every character is well developed and totally three dimensional. I loved the intricacies of each one, and Jessie is just a delight, having a beautiful relationship with her Dad. Jesse has a lot to deal with now that her family has moved to Ireland from the USA...weird little sister, new school, new friends, boys, bullying - oh, and did I mention her Dad? Read on...! The Librarians Chair; Amazon.co.uk 9/2/17


Vivid characters, excellent story:
In Croatia, with Aoife Maguire
Dad's Red Dress is a story for our times, and one that can be enjoyed by all of the family. The characters are vivid, the story is fresh, and the dialogue is sparkling. I can heartily recommend it. Amazon.co.uk 8/2/17

A sparkling and rewarding read:
From the very first paragraph, I was sucked into the colourful and crazy world of young Jessie Keane. Her exotic family exudes warmth and togetherness. The reader is left in no doubt that this is a loving and safe environment for her and her sister. ... [The] serious subject matter is dealt with sensitively by L.J. Sedgwick, and even better than that, it is uproariously funny. I found myself re-reading sentences and entire paragraphs over again, in pure joy. I haven't enjoyed a novel as much in years. - Trish Groves, author.

What a great story – sometimes sad, deeply thought-provoking and often laugh out loud funny - Amazon.co.uk: 20/4/17

I found "Dad's Red Dress" sparkling, charming and a very entertaining book. - Amazon.co.uk: 18/3/17
In London with actress Karen Connell

AND FROM THE WONDERFUL READERS....

It's a beautiful story excellently told...one of the best novels I've read in bloody ages. - Patrick Chapman, author of Slow Clocks of Decay

Just finished your book on Wednesday. I had a few tears at the last chapter. It's a great read I love that style of writing. Your very witty and creative! I'm on the look out for a sequel or your second publication! – N F

At times very funny and the subject matter deftly handled, it was hard to put down and always a pleasure to get back to. Can't wait for the sequel. – T O’B, 
On way to Norway with Jakki Moore

Enjoyed the novel very much. Funny, off-beat and convincing. –  M B 

It was a touching story, dealing with all sorts of issues.  Such beautiful characters in Jessie's family, I loved them all. You did it so well, I really wanted to see how they would all deal with it.  Beautifully in the end! –  K S

It's heartbreaking, heartwarming and brilliantly funny, all at the same time. – PG.
*sob* What a lovely ending... it hits all the emotional marks. *blows nose loudly on damp tissue, which promptly disintegrates.* I love it. T G.


Only 10% through but having a good giggle. – K McV

In Oz with Andrea Mangan
What a great story, filled with complexity - original and believable, every character so well developed and totally three dimensional. I loved the intricacies of each one, and Jessie is just a delight, I was with her all the way! A beautiful relationship with her Dad, and her little sister! It's wonderful, just wonderful!!  - Caroline Farrell, author of Arkyne and Lady Beth.  



Wednesday, May 10, 2017

Dad's Red Dress... travelling farther than I've ever been!

Still waiting for pictures from Berlin, Madrid and Scotland!
Galway: its first bookshop, Charlie Byrne's Bookshop

In Australia, off the beaten trail on the east coast

On the way to Norway via the Irish Writer's Centre

In Croatia, a place I've never been...Taking in the sunshine

And on a London bus... 

Wednesday, May 3, 2017

My first American review for Dad's Red Dress

I haven't let myself look on the Amazon sites to see if reviews have been appearing, at least not since the first few weeks -- so imagine the delight to find this one on Amazon.com ! 

Dad's Red Dress is available on Amazon, in Charlie Byrne's Bookshop, Galway and directly from DadsRedDress@lindsayjsedgwick.com

Now in Charlie Byrne's Bookshop, Galway



This is a very entertaining and engaging read written in an original and imaginative way. And it deals with quite a difficult subject really well through humour.

From the beginning of the book we become aware that Jessie’s family are not quite main- stream - Eva , Jessie’s stepmother is a breast sculptor, Laura, Jessie’s sister has a fixation with the Virgin Mary and insists on wearing a veil the whole time. But it not until we are into the second chapter that we become aware that Jessie’s father likes to wear women’s clothes and wants to have a sex change. And because the family have just moved to Ireland from LA, Jessie has a lot to cope with.

I felt that Lindsay got into the head of Jessie very well. She is a sensitive and imaginative teenager who has ordinary everyday teenage problems to deal with as well as her dad’s transexuality. The character of the school principal who is attracted to ‘Mandy’ adds plenty of humour to proceedings as does Laura, Jessie’s sister with her quirky ways and her unusual pets. There are plenty of humorous moments, one particularly hilarious one where Mandy’s chicken fillet comes flying out at a rugby match springs to mind. She balances humour and tension perfectly throughout the novel.

This book should appeal to all teenagers - Jessie is a typical teenager in many ways and as the novel progresses we get to know and like her better. We sympathise with her love for her father and her struggle to come to terms with ‘Mandy’. I became involved in her world where clouds take on a significance and her colourful way of thinking.

I would recommend this quirky and entertaining novel to anyone. It highlighted the problems that the children of transsexuals can encounter when their parents are transitioning. without preaching or making judgement. - Kindle edition review on Amazon.com: 25/4/17

EARLIER REVIEWS ....

I've read this twice, as an advance reader copy, and as an ebook on my kindle. It's a great story for young adults, a coming of age themed novel, filled with complexity and featuring a wonderful family of characters, alternative in many ways, and yet, so relatable. Original and believable, every character is well developed and totally three dimensional. I loved the intricacies of each one, and Jessie is just a delight, having a beautiful relationship with her Dad. Jesse has a lot to deal with now that her family has moved to Ireland from the USA...weird little sister, new school, new friends, boys, bullying - oh, and did I mention her Dad? Read on...! The Librarians Chair; Amazon.co.uk 9/2/17


Vivid characters, excellent story:
In Croatia, with Aoife Maguire
Dad's Red Dress is a story for our times, and one that can be enjoyed by all of the family. The characters are vivid, the story is fresh, and the dialogue is sparkling. I can heartily recommend it. Amazon.co.uk 8/2/17

A sparkling and rewarding read:
From the very first paragraph, I was sucked into the colourful and crazy world of young Jessie Keane. Her exotic family exudes warmth and togetherness. The reader is left in no doubt that this is a loving and safe environment for her and her sister. ... [The] serious subject matter is dealt with sensitively by L.J. Sedgwick, and even better than that, it is uproariously funny. I found myself re-reading sentences and entire paragraphs over again, in pure joy. I haven't enjoyed a novel as much in years. - Trish Groves, author.

What a great story – sometimes sad, deeply thought-provoking and often laugh out loud funny - Amazon.co.uk: 20/4/17

I found "Dad's Red Dress" sparkling, charming and a very entertaining book. - Amazon.co.uk: 18/3/17
In London with actress Karen Connell

AND FROM THE WONDERFUL READERS....

It's a beautiful story excellently told...one of the best novels I've read in bloody ages. - Patrick Chapman, author of Slow Clocks of Decay

Just finished your book on Wednesday. I had a few tears at the last chapter. It's a great read I love that style of writing. Your very witty and creative! I'm on the look out for a sequel or your second publication! – N F

At times very funny and the subject matter deftly handled, it was hard to put down and always a pleasure to get back to. Can't wait for the sequel. – T O’B, 
On way to Norway with Jakki Moore

Enjoyed the novel very much. Funny, off-beat and convincing. –  M B 

It was a touching story, dealing with all sorts of issues.  Such beautiful characters in Jessie's family, I loved them all. You did it so well, I really wanted to see how they would all deal with it.  Beautifully in the end! –  K S
In Oz with Andrea Mangan

It's heartbreaking, heartwarming and brilliantly funny, all at the same time. – PG.
*sob* What a lovely ending... it hits all the emotional marks. *blows nose loudly on damp tissue, which promptly disintegrates.* I love it. T G.


Only 10% through but having a good giggle. – K McV

What a great story, filled with complexity - original and believable, every character so well developed and totally three dimensional. I loved the intricacies of each one, and Jessie is just a delight, I was with her all the way! A beautiful relationship with her Dad, and her little sister! It's wonderful, just wonderful!!  - Caroline Farrell, author of Arkyne and Lady Beth.