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Author & Reading Group Links

I have written numerous articles, technical handbooks for the services, five non-fiction books, one eBook, and now two novels: the latter being my real love. Apart from this I have earned my living as an author and publications manager and editor, for over 30 years. I have also worked as a webmaster. So I have covered most bases, even if I have entered fiction rather late (2010)!

As I now focus on fiction, I am keen to develop links with a small number of reading groups not too far from Bournemouth, in the south of England, who are interested in my work. Normally I approach the leader of what I consider to be suitable groups directly, but if you are a group leader and this interests you then please contact me.

Basically this is a two-way process. I would be delighted to visit one of your group meetings and will give a short talk and/or enter into a Q&A session. I do not make any charge for this, but I am looking for feedback on a specified book and, hopefully, would like to get some brief reader reviews on it from your group. So this will firstly entail some of your members buying a specified book and emailing me their individual reviews prior to the visit. On the visit we can chat about the book, or writing in general, and I will be pleased to sign any copies of my books - or even deliver pre-ordered ones.

I look forward to the possibility of meeting you at one of these meetings. At the outset only one meeting is planned, but it might be possible for this to develop into a longer-term relationship whereby I chat about future ideas and get your feedback on those. Who knows, you might be able to feature in one of my novels (with your kind permission, of course)!

–Ian Kingsley


The Process

Group Qualifying Conditions

  1. You are based within 30 miles of my home in Bournemouth. However, for the present, I would also include locations within 10 miles of Bath: because the book currently in question is set in Bath. [Please tell me the location of the proposed meeting.]

  2. You have informed your group about this page, asked them to read it and look at the details of the qualifying book, and have then taken a vote to ensure sufficient members are interested in going ahead.

  3. You will have a quiet and private meeting room (not a public room). [Please confirm this.]

  4. The number attending should normally be between 8 and 16. Spouses are welcome — particularly if they have also read the book. [Please estimate this.]

  5. Most reading groups mainly comprise females. Although this is not essential, it would be great to have one or two males present in order to avoid feedback that is too gender-dependent. Ladies, if your husband has also read the book, why not bring him a long? [Please estimate the gender split.]

  6. At least 5+ members agree to buy and read a copy of the specified book (see below). They also agree to email me with a short reader review at least 5 days prior to the meeting. [The group leader is requested to give me their assurance of this.] The email heading should be: 'Reading Group Feedback Review'.

  7. If requested, readers providing a reader review will later post it online on an agreed/approved website (eg Amazon.co.uk, Goodreads.com, etc), and will permit their review to be used on my own website.

The qualifying book is currently: Flying a Kite.

How the Group Leader Makes Arrangements

Confirming Qualifying Conditions. The group leader should email me confirming the group will meet the above listed conditions in order that we can agree on a time and date. Please provide me with the requested details above, the name of your group, its gender split, and the genres that interest it.

Confirming Reader Reviews are Done. Please confirm that at least 5 members have emailed me their short reader reviews at least 5 days prior to the event. (If note then another date may have to be arranged.)

Questions. Please let me know about any particular questions you would like to ask me. I'm quite open to free questions on the night, but if there is a theme you wish to cover in more detail then it would be good to know in advance. I am particularly keen on realistic characterisation (especially through dialogue), a strong sense of place (I've been there), and the principle of 'showing not telling' (want to know WHY?).

Group Leader Details. Would the group leader please give me his/her full contact details, including an email address and a telephone number (preferably a landline and a mobile number).

Pre-Ordered Copies. Please let me know if your members would like me to bring any copies of the books shown on the right, to sell — at their normal price plus a penny; they are £7.99, but I don't carry pennies for change! (Clearly those providing the advance reviews need to buy their copies well ahead of this. Amazon is probably the most reliable source.)

Signings. I will, of course, be pleased to sign copies of my books - whether bought on the night or elsewhere.

About: The Reading Group's Guide

Apart from our meeting, you might like to use The Reading Group's Guide for Flying a Kite as the basis for a separate discussion one evening. Or, if you prefer, you can ask me to attend this discussion and to participate. I would quietly listen to each point discussed and then put forward my own view before you move on to another topic. This could then lead on to a closing Q&A session. I enjoy this format. [The Group Leader should advise me in advance if this is your chosen option.]


FULL DETAILS OF THE BOOK - INCLUDING A VIDEO TRAILER

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BELOW IS THE 'QUALIFYING BOOK'

Click for overview and to BUY

Full Details -
including video trailer

The principal setting for the above novel is in and around Bath, but other settings include Rome, Lake Garda, Tenerife, Los Angeles and Santa Barbara. [More]

ENDORSMENTS:

"I love the characters. Ada is superbly done." (Anne Lyken-Garner, author of Sunday's Child)


"Up there with some of the best published work around." (Walter Robson, author of Access to History: Medieval Britain)


"Very good, and addresses a universal question in a much better way than Dan Brown in Angels and Demons, where the God vs science debate is just another sub-plot in yet another ciphering book. In Flying a Kite it's the main plot thread, convincingly dealt with and riveting." (Richard Pierce, author of Dead Men)


"Fluid, smooth and flows at a lovely pace. Really engaging from the start. Like The Shack, there is a niche for this kind of book." (Gillian McDade, author of The Standing Man)


"Tight writing… using dialogue to give just enough detail to hook us into the story, leaving the snippets of backstory until the reader is well and truly engrossed. Great stuff!" (Jo Carroll, author of Over The Hill And Far Away)


"Characters are direct and effective. I enjoyed the pace which allows the reader to think about the important concepts by himself." (Heikki Hietala, author of Tulagi Hotel)


"Fluent, graphic writing and excellent use of description... Characters alive with captivating dialogue." (Elijah Iwuji, author of Praying in the Will of God)


"I love the characters. Ada is superbly done." (Anne Lyken-Garner, author of Sunday's Child)


The following non-fiction book partners Flying a Kite
at present only an eBook

Also by the same author, his debut novel, a psychological thriller:


The book below was my debut novel —
it is NOT the Qualifying Book

Click for overview and to BUY

The principal settings for the above novel are near to Bournemouth and include Mudeford Sandbank, Hengistbury Head, Wick village, Tuckton, Christchurch, Stanpit and Mudeford. [More]

READER COMMENTS:

"I found this a gripping book that was hard to put down. The characterisations and dialogue are very realistic and good. All in all a very enjoyable read. I'll be keeping an eye out for any future Ian Kingsley fiction." (C. Thwaite - Amazon.co.uk)


"You are able to relate to the Vincent family and are able to sympathize with them as well. Although you may think you have this book all figured out, trust me you don't, wait until the end." (Michele Tater - The Couch Tater Review)


"A must read book. I didn't know how this book would end until the last few pages. There were lots of twists. Just couldn't put the book down and read it in 24 hours." (JJ - Amazon.co.uk)