Welcome to Inheritance Books Janice. Tell us a bit about yourself.
Hi Rhoda – thank you for asking me over to talk about my inheritance books. I live in Scotland. I write fiction with humour and heart and with a hint of tartan. Look out for my Amazon Kindle bestselling ebooks ‘Bagpipes & Bullshot’ and ‘Reaching for the Stars’ and my magically romantic novellas ‘How Do You Voodoo? and ‘Voodoo Wedding’. When not writing novels, I write lifestyle articles and have had work published in national and international magazines and regional newspapers. I have also been involved in BBC Scotland’s ‘Write Here Write Now’. I am a member of the Romantic Novelist’s Association and also a featured author and editor of Bookshelf Reviews at the innovative magazine style website Loveahappyending Lifestyle.
Wow, you’re a busy lady. Which book did you inherit from the generation above? Why is it special?
The walls of my small study are lined with all sorts of books: hardbacks and paperbacks, non-fiction and fiction, biographies, thrillers, romances, and children’s books old and new. I love them all but I love one in particular, and it’s special to me for lots of reasons, not least because I inherited it from my maternal grandmother. It’s The Queen’s Book of the Red Cross and it was published by Hodder and Stoughton in November 1939 in aid of The Lord Mayor of London’s Fund for The Red Cross. It
contains a facsimile of a handwritten message from Her Majesty The Queen, our Late Queen Mother, and it is an absolute treasure trove of pictures and contributions from fifty British authors of the time, including the author Ruby Ferguson, who has been both an idol and an inspiration to me since I was a young child.
As a girl, I loved Ruby Ferguson’s ‘Jill Series’ of pony books. I read them over and over. They were my best friends. All I had to do to achieve my dream of owning a pony and living in the countryside was to open up a ‘Jill book’ and lose myself in her wonderful make-believe world. In those days, I read paperbacks from the library. Now I have a full collection of first edition ‘Jill Books’ in their original dust jackets.
Which book would you leave to later generations and why?
When I inherited The Queens Book of the Red Cross some years later, I was delighted to discover that my favourite author had been one of the contributors and, from the biography at the top of her story page, I discovered she was “an author with a command of two widely different fields. On the one hand, as R.C Ashby, she has written first class mystery; on the other she is a romantic writer.” What a fabulous find! I had discovered there were more ‘grown up’ Ruby Ferguson books and, over the past ten years, I have made it my mission to discover and read them all.
Ruby Constance Ferguson wrote eight mystery thrillers under her maiden name of R C Ashby. I now have most of these treasured old books on my shelf. The most prized is the signed first edition copy of The Moorland Man – the Romance of a Northern Farm published in 1926 by Hodder & Stoughton. They are the amongst the oldest books on my shelves and none have dust jackets, which is just as well, as I doubt I could have afforded to buy them if they had. She also wrote thirteen wonderful romance novels. From Lady Rose and Mrs Memmary in 1937 to A Woman with a Secret in 1965. She also wrote a fictionalised memoir published in 1967. I do hope to pass these wonderful works to future generations of my family. There really is something for everyone, from children’s books, to mystery thrillers and suspense, to romantic novels that pull at your heart strings.
Ruby Ferguson died on Jersey on 11th November 1966. As a tribute to my favourite author I have a West Highland Terrier called, yes, you guessed it, ‘Ruby’.
Thank you for sharing your Inheritance Books with us, Janice. It was a pleasure having you visit.
You can find out more about Janice from her Author Blog, follow her on Twitter: @JaniceHorton, like Janice’s Facebook Page or Link to Janice’s Amazon Author Page. Or even find her at Loveahappyending.com. Janice’s books including the bestselling ‘Bagpipes and Bullshot‘ are available on Amazon now.
As it happens, I’ve currently reading her nonfiction book How to Party Online and I’m really enjoying it.