I’m delighted to welcome Kirsty Manning to Behind the Pen today. Kirsty is the author of a recent favourite of mine, The Jade Lily. Kirsty was kind enough to divulge a few of her favourites to me. Over to you Kirsty…
What is your favourite…and why…
Character from one of your books?
I love all my women, but I think I love Nina from The Jade Lily the best. I am so with Alexandra when she says: ‘There was such ferocity to Nina’s love and Alexandra missed her constant stream of insults and tight hugs.’
Scene from one of your books?
Final scene in The Jade Lily (shhh can’t tell!)
(I know that one and yes! I can see why)
Movie of all time?
Hidden Figures. Took my kids to see it to show them what is possible if you dare to work hard enough.
Book that you always keep a copy of and recommend to others?
Narrow Road to the Deep North by Richard Flanagan.
People of the Book by Geraldine Brooks.
Fashion accessory that despite having plenty of, you still keep collecting?
I can’t go past a pretty earring, or a long necklace.
Drink that you enjoy everyday?
Treat you indulge in?
Shamefully, too many to list. But in order: books, chocolate, wine and a good massage. I am also partial to a martini.
Place to be?
The beach with my family.
Person you admire?
So many. But at the moment, Angela Merkel, Chancellor of Germany, for showing the rest of the world what true leadership and reform looks like, opening the German borders to refugees and taking the right stance.
It’s also hard to go past Emma Gonzalez, the student that is leading the charge against guns in America. Brave, bright, passionate and articulate.
And Beyonce. Because she is everything…
Season of the year?
Summer (refer to note above about the beach!) I love being hot.
The Jade Lily
In 2016, fleeing London with a broken heart, Alexandra returns to Australia to be with her grandparents, Romy and Wilhelm, when her grandfather is dying. With only weeks left together, her grandparents begin to reveal the family mysteries they have kept secret for more than half a century. In 1939, two young girls meet in Shanghai, the ‘Paris of the East’: beautiful local Li and Viennese refugee Romy form a fierce friendship. But the deepening shadows of World War Two fall over the women as Li and Romy slip between the city’s glamorous French Concession and the desperate Shanghai Ghetto. Eventually, they are forced separate ways as Romy doubts Li’s loyalties. After Wilhelm dies, Alexandra flies to Shanghai, determined to trace her grandparents’ past. As she peels back the layers of their hidden lives, she begins to question everything she knows about her family – and herself. A gorgeously told tale of female friendship, the price of love, and the power of hardship and courage to shape us all.