Hello, it’s been a while. I’ve finally brushed down the Inheritance Books sofa in order to welcome Elle Turner. And I’ve got stollen! You’ve got to love stollen. yummmm.
Anyway, welcome to Inheritance Books, Elle. Why don’t you start us off by telling us a bit about yourself.
My love of books started when I was very young and I first decided to write a book myself when I was eight. I only got as far as chapter headings, though, and these were directly influenced by the books my mum introduced me to that I talk about below. I did have some real friends, but I spent most of my time talking (out loud) to the Famous Five and sleeping with a stuffed dog called Timmy on my feet. My young childhood was definitely characterised by books, sitting by the fire when the weather was bad (as it often was as I live in beautiful, but often wet and windy, Scotland) or in my bed until I could hardly keep my eyes open. I thought in stories, imagined I lived in the books I read and was more than happy with their characters for company. 🙂
Which book have you inherited from a generation above? Why is it special?
It’s really my mum who started me off down the path of loving books. She gave me many, but the ones I loved the most were from the Abbey Series by Elsie J. Oxenham. These were stories of young women and schoolgirls growing up by an Abbey near High Wycombe. Red-haired Joan and Joy were the original Abbey Girls and the series followed them into adulthood, with eventually their own children following the original Abbey Girls’ traditions. I only have a few of the books, nowadays they are collectors’ items, but I’d love to track down more in the series one day.
The Abbey Girls were members of the Hamlet Club, they learned elaborate country dances that I wanted to be able to do and spent ages prancing around our living room pretending I could. The girls were chosen to be “May Queens” with their own designated flower and colour associated with their reign. I wore a nightie of my mum’s and rooted through our linen cupboard for something I could use as a train when I was pretending to be a May Queen. I think I used a bath towel in the end, probably not exactly the look the characters were going for! Joy was responsible for me wanting red hair from a young age, something I’ve achieved a few times over the years. Sometimes a female character would “disappear” for a short while only to “reappear” with twins, which I also thought was kinda cool. A bit eerily, fast forward a few years and I too now have twins, so I should probably be grateful I inherited the Abbey books from mum and not, say, a Stephen King novel, or who knows how my life would have turned out. 😉
Which book would you like to leave to future generations? Why?
My twin boys are now in their early teens. I think the book I would want to pass on to them is Fahrenheit 451 by Ray Bradbury. It was on the syllabus at school when I was just a few years older than they are now and it’s the main book from that time that resonated with me. It’s such a famous book that we probably all know it’s about the burning of books as they are no longer allowed in society. Books are thought to cause unrest and unhappiness as they risk leading people to think. Better to be anaesthetised watching screens the size of walls pump information that doesn’t take too much processing.
Considering it was written in 1953, it’s a scary, but wonderful, book. I remember my English teacher saying that when she first was teaching it, personal Walkman stereos were starting to become popular. This was the advent of people walking about wearing earphones, disconnected from those around them (which I’m not immune to doing, I admit). It struck such a chord with me at the time (around 35 years after the book was written) and I’d love to know how it’s viewed by my guys a further 30 years down the line.
That’s quite a mind-boggling thought. Thank you for sharing your inheritance books with us, Elle. Good luck with your new book.
Elle’s latest book Tapestry is available to buy now. You can find out more about Elle by visiting her on Twitter (@ElleTWriter), Instagram (elletwriter), Facebook (elleturnerwriter) or her website (www.elleturnerwriter.com).