The one where I celebrate a book birthday for Seashell Cottage and All You Need is Love

This month, I’m celebrating two book birthdays.

Today – 12th March – is three years since the final book in the Welcome to Whitsborough Bay series came out, freshly edited and re-released by Boldwood Books. As all the books in this series were released in quick succession over a two-month period, it’s really a celebration for all of them.

This rapid release was a game-changer for me as it helped build a readership with a thirst for the next part which was quickly satisfied. Making Wishes at Bay View was released on 14th January 2020 with both New Beginnings at Seaside Blooms and Finding Hope at Lighthouse Cove out on 20th February, concluding with Coming Home to Seashell Cottage on 12th March.

Less than two weeks later, the UK went into the first Covid lockdown. I don’t know about you, but it still feels like some strange dream looking back at that time. I find myself thinking, “Did that really happen?” Such peculiar times.

I’m convinced that going into lockdown massively helped the sale of this series because readers were seeking escapism and non-readers were turning to books for the same reason. New Beginnings at Seaside Blooms went into Prime reading in the May and shot up the Kindle chart, peaking at #14 and staying in the Top 100 for roughly four months. To this day, this remains my highest position in the UK chart across all my books. Still hoping one day for a UK Top 10. Pretty please!

Three years on, the four books continue to sell steadily. All of them have exceeded 50k of sales with the bestseller, as you’d probably expect, being the first in the series although there are only 5,000 sales separating book 1 and book 4 which makes me so happy as it means that readers have typically gone on to read all four books rather than reading one and not going any further.

I have to pinch myself that the books I’ve written have managed to hit sales levels like this, especially after such a tricky start. I was originally with a publisher who struggled to make an impact and ceased trading after book 4 was released. The sales figures I had with them were:

  • Book 1 – 379 in 18 months (was a novella at the time but is now a full-length novel)
  • Book 2 – 1,316 in 18 months
  • Book 3 – 699 in 6 months
  • Book 4 – 72 in 3 months

Bit different, eh? I then released them as an indie author and sold very few so I still do a double take and count my blessings big time every time I get my sales figures. I’m eternally grateful to my amazing publisher, Boldwood Books, for completely turning things around for me.

The reviews/ratings never cease to amaze me and I am so thankful for readers who take the time to share the book love, whether that’s in review format or just a rating. It makes a massive difference to authors in making a book more visible, and the written reviews can be such a boost of encouragement when self-doubt sets in … which it frequently does for all authors I know!

Across Amazon and Audible, reviews/ratings have passed 21,000 (16.5k on Amazon and approaching 5k on Audible).

New Beginnings at Seaside Blooms will always be a very special book to me because it’s the first book I wrote. It was inspired by something that happened in my personal life which I thought would make a great premise for a story and got me writing. The main character, Sarah, needed two friends and as soon as they started to develop, I realised they had stories of their own to tell and a trilogy was born. Then my original publisher asked me to write a short story to give away for free before we released the first book. I’m not good at writing ‘short’ so a prequel novella came out. When I was an indie author, I felt there was more story to tell and wrote a sequel. The two were then combined to make one full-length novel.

Although Seaside Blooms is really special to me, my favourite book in the series is Coming Home to Seashell Cottage. It’s full of twists and turns and is also more emotional than the others in the series. While writing that book, I felt as though I’d truly found my voice and the type of author I wanted to be. I’m very proud of that book.

And, of course, the setting of Whitsborough Bay opened a flood of ideas and my twelfth book set in this fictional coastal town is out next month with plenty more still to come.

The first book after the Welcome to Whitsborough Bay series celebrated a birthday yesterday too but I actually forgot about it because it was also my husband’s and dog’s birthdays so it had slipped my mind that there was also a book birthday. And, as I’ve mentioned the dog, here she is yesterday with one of her birthday gifts.

All You Need is Love was my first brand new indie release and, after a fresh edit through Boldwood, came out on 11th March 2021 so happy 2nd birthday to that story.

Although these books (using different titles) are officially older than this, I made a decision to use the Boldwood re-release dates for book birthday celebrations rather than the original release dates because those are the ones that had the impact. All the books floundered before Boldwood came along.

This is also a really special book to me and remains one of my favourites of all the books I’ve written. It was the first time I wrote a dual perspective story and I really loved the challenge of that. I’ve written another eight dual perspective stories since then and even one with three points of view – The Secret to Happiness.

If you’ve read any of these books, I hope you’ve enjoyed them. Do you have a personal favourite?

Thank you and enormous grateful hugs to Boldwood and all the amazing readers and listeners who have supported these books.

Enjoy the rest of your weekend.

Big hugs
Jessica xx

The one where Bumblebee Barn goes into Prime Reading, SC3 is up for pre-order and HH6 is on a Kindle Daily Deal in Australia

Hi everyone, hope you’re well and not too chilly if you’re in the UK surrounded by snow right now! In Scarborough (aka Whitsborough Bay), we had a white-over on Tuesday this week which cleared fairly quickly. This morning it was another white-over but even less snow which quickly turned to slush and went. My parents who are inland have it quite heavily, though. I was hoping to go across to see them today but the snow at their end has prevented that, especially as there’s a steep bank mid-way which is closed due to the weather. I’ll bob across next week instead.

I’ve had an extremely busy start to March. I had a submission deadline for book 20 – the first in my Lake District series – on Tuesday this week and I should have had plenty of time to write it but I lost a week early on due to illness. I suspect it was another Covid hit and it wiped me out which meant I was way behind so put in some exhausting hours catching up. I love the story, though, and am eagerly awaiting my editor’s feedback next week.

I’ve also started running a one-month online course so needed to record my training videos and get that all set up. I’m now pausing for breath and picking up the many balls I had to drop over the past few weeks.

One of these balls is letting you know that Healing Hearts at Bumblebee Barn went into into Prime Reading at the start of the month and will be there for at least 12 weeks.

It didn’t move up the charts much at first, but seems to have taken traction today and is loitering just outside the UK Kindle Top 100 so I’m hopeful of it dipping just inside again. Go on, little book, buzz on up that chart please!

If you haven’t already read it, here’s the blurb to entice you…

Welcome to Bumblebee Barn, home to wonderful animals, stunning views and spectacular sunsets – and resident young farmer, Barney.

While Barney loves his life at Bumblebee Barn – a farm that has been in his family for generations – he’s struggling to find someone to share it with. The early mornings quad biking through muddy fields and the long hours looking after the crops and animals are proving to be a deterrent to finding love.

So when his sister, Fizz – desperate for Barney to find his soulmate – sees an advert for Love on the Farm, a new reality TV show to help farmers find love, he has nothing to lose by applying. After all, he isn’t meeting anyone suitable down the traditional route and surely he won’t be picked anyway…?

Thrown into the chaos of reality TV, Barney could never have expected that his whole life would be turned upside down, with buried secrets to be uncovered and his heart on the line. With his family and friends rooting for him, could the magic of Bumblebee Barn heal his broken heart and help him find love on the farm?

Join top 10 bestseller Jessica Redland for a brand new standalone novel of love, family and second chances.

Readers are loving Bumblebee Barn and I’m so chuffed that it went past the 1,000 reviews/ratings on Amazon at the start of the week so a huge thank you to everyone who has shared the book love.

In other news, it’s just under 4 weeks until my next release. My nineteenth book, Summer Nights at The Starfish Café is out on 6th April. It’s available for per-order on Kindle UK here and Kindle US here.

It has also gone up for pre-order on Audible. The full details aren’t there at the time of writing e.g. it hasn’t got a running time yet and it says the narrator is Kitty Kelly. That’s correct but Kitty is the guest narrator, telling Kerry’s story. Hollie’s chapters are still narrated by the amazing Lucy Brownhill who has narrated the other two audiobooks in the series – Snowflakes Over The Starfish Café and Spring Tides at The Starfish Café.

You can find pre-order the Audible UK version here and the Audible US version here.

Can you read or listen to this book as a standalone? Yes, but I say that with significant hesitation. Kerry’s story is new although she did appear as a minor character in book 2. Hollie and Jake’s story starts in book 1 and develops across the series and I really don’t think you will get the full reading enjoyment if you start with book 3. A couple of the plot points in this third book don’t really make sense in isolation. Well, they do because I give the back story needed as a reminder to those who have had a gap between reading the books, but there’s a much richer reading experience to be had by starting at the beginning.

If you’re interested in a print version, the large print version and the hardback are up for pre-order at the moment. You can tell they’re special versions due to the price. The paperback will retail at £12.99 and may go up for pre-order or be available on the day. If anyone wants a signed copy, please do comment or contact me on social media as I have stock which will be £14 including p&p in the UK.

Here’s what this book is all about…

Welcome back to The Starfish Café for a glorious summer, but with a few dark clouds on the horizon…

A new beginning…

As her summer wedding to Jake approaches, Hollie is excited for their new beginning as a family. But when some unexpected news threatens the future she and Jake had hoped for, Hollie will need to find the strength to overcome heartache once more.

A fragile heart….

Single mum, Kerry, loves her job at The Starfish Café, but behind the brave smiles and laughter with customers there is a sadness deep within. So when someone from her past re-appears in her life, Kerry can either hide away or face her demons and try to finally move on from her heartbreak.

A summer to remember…

For Hollie and Kerry it promises to be an emotional rollercoaster of a summer, but the community at The Starfish Café will always be there to help them through – after all, with courage nothing is impossible…

Join top 10 bestseller Jessica Redland for a wonderful summer at the seaside, full of love, friendship and community spirit.

And my final offer for today is on Kindle Australia where the final book in the Hedgehog Hollow series – Christmas Miracles at Hedgehog Hollow – is on a Kindle daily deal. This is on Saturday 11th March and, as it’s already Saturday in Australia, this offer has now kicked in. Readers can pick it up for the bargain price of $1.19 on SATURDAY ONLY. You can find it here.

With it being the final book of six, you can probably guess what I’m going to say here? NOT a standalone book. Yes, you can pick it up and read it as it’s a complete story but there are so many characters who have been building up across the entire series and so many threads tying together that I wouldn’t. I really would encourage readers to go back to the start and enjoy the whole journey. But, you might want to add this to your Kindle while it’s on the daily deal and add the others to it later.

The blurb if you haven’t read this one yet…

It’s the countdown to Christmas at Hedgehog Hollow Wildlife Rescue Centre, and everyone is gearing up for a festive season to remember…

It should be the most wonderful time of the year for Samantha and Josh as they prepare for the arrival of their first baby. But life at Hedgehog Hollow rarely goes to plan and the pair are faced with adversaries, old and new, and unexpected challenges to overcome.

Fizz’s job at the heart of the rescue centre is a dream come true but her personal life is more like a nightmare. With her love life a disaster and her past about to dramatically catch up with her, she needs the love and support of her Hedgehog Hollow family more than ever.

As the snow falls over Hedgehog Hollow, will Samantha and Fizz find the Christmas miracle they need to overcome their heartache and find happiness?

Top 10 bestseller Jessica Redland welcomes you back to Hedgehog Hollow this Christmas for the final time in this series for a heartfelt story of love, family, friendship – and hedgehogs of course!

That’s it from me for now. Wishing you a fabulous weekend. It’s my husband’s birthday tomorrow and also our dog’s but, due to the weather, we’re having a quiet day at home rather than attempting to go out and about, with a Chinese takeaway for tea and a family film.

Big hugs
Jessica xx

The one where it’s publication day for Healing Hearts at Bumblebee Barn

Happy publication day to me, happy publication day to me… Yay! I’m so thrilled that my first of four releases in 2023 is OUT NOW.

Healing Hearts at Bumblebee Barn is a brand new standalone story but, for fans of Hedgehog Hollow – and particularly those who were so disappointed about the series ending with book six last year – there’s are some special treats in store. The main character in this story is young farmer Barney Kinsella who is the brother of Fizz – one of the Hedgehog Hollow team. We therefore get to see Fizz again and a couple of the other characters from the rescue centre. It’s set a year later so readers get some insights into how things at Hedgehog Hollow have moved along since Christmas Miracles at Hedgehog Hollow. However, please do NOT be put off if you haven’t read the Hedgehog Hollow series because you don’t need to have for this book to make sense.

I say it’s a standalone book but there have been so many lovely comments in early reviews about how much readers would love it to be the start of a series. Yesterday, I pitched an idea to my editor for a sequel and she loved it. My releases for 2023 are already planned so it wouldn’t be out until 2024 if I do write one, but it’s looking good for a sequel at the moment. I’m not going to give any spoilers for what it would be about other than to reassure those who prefer standalone books that Healing Hearts at Bumblebee Barn is a complete story with no cliffhangers and any sequel will also be a complete story which could be read as a standalone too.

In my acknowledgements at the back of Healing Hearts at Bumblebee Barn, I talk about this being a difficult book to write. There were a couple of reasons for this. Firstly, I’ve been living with the concept of the story – a farmer entering a reality TV show to find love – for a couple of years, ever since Fizz first mentioned her brother in the Hedgehog Hollow books. I don’t like ‘brewing’ my stories for this long because my writing style is pantser, meaning I ‘fly by the seat of my pants’, letting the story unfold as it goes. Having a story develop in my head for so long goes against this and, when I started writing, the characters didn’t want to do what I’d planned for them so my first draft was a bit of a mess!

Secondly – and actually a much bigger issue – was the immense pressure I felt after the success of the Hedgehog Hollow series. I absolutely love this series and I’m so touched by the way readers have taken it to their hearts. It was incredibly flattering that readers didn’t want the series to end. Some readers expressed disappointment but also excitement for what was to come next, which was a huge relief, but others seemed genuinely annoyed with me and I feared losing them as readers. It would probably have been ‘safer’ to make my next book a Whitsborough Bay one as, even though there isn’t the same buzz about the Whitsborough Bay books as there is about the Hedgehog Hollow ones, they have been really popular too. In fact, although my best-seller so far is Finding Love at Hedgehog Hollow, the next two best are Whitsborough Bay books – Snowflakes Over The Starfish Café followed by The Secret to Happiness. Barney’s story burned to be told, though, so I took that risk and I think it might have paid off. I’ve even had comments from early readers saying they didn’t think I could surpass Hedgehog Hollow… until they read Healing Hearts at Bumblebee Barn.

It’s actually one of my favourite stories out of the nineteen books I’ve written so far. (This is book eighteen but I’ve already finished the nineteenth one). I love the setting and the characters so much and writing it just gave me the warm and fuzzies.

When I first announced that it was included a reality TV show, some readers expressed surprise as that was a very different subject matter for me, but I’d like to think that all my books have something different about them. I’d say that my “thing” is my setting and this book has an amazing setting in Bumblebee Barn, but I need to mix it up as to how a story comes together and reality TV gave me another different scenario to explore. I know there’ll be readers out there who aren’t fans of reality TV, but please don’t let it put you off because that’s merely the scenario which brings the story together. I haven’t changed genre and written a romcom. This is still the type of book readers would expect from me – emotional but uplifting with a strong setting and relatable characters.

Healing Hearts at Bumblebee Barn embarks on a whopping blog tour this morning. With 16 days at 3 stops a day, this 48-review strong blog tour must be my biggest yet. A huge thank you to Rachel Gilbey from Rachel’s Random Resources for organising it on behalf of Boldwood Books and to all the wonderful bloggers/reviewers who have signed up. Thank you also to those who aren’t on the tour but will share their reviews independently. I’m excited to hear your thoughts and thank you so much for taking the time to read and review Healing Hearts at Bumblebee Barn.

It’s out in ALL formats today – large print, hardback, paperback, audio, and all eBook formats. It was exciting to see it at #3 in the Apple Fiction & Literature chart first thing this morning (#17 in the overall paid chart).

The impact of pre-orders and on-the-day purchases on the Amazon and Audible charts won’t kick in until later today but Kindle Australia, being way ahead of us time-wise, is showing #143 in the overall chart already which is amazing. I don’t know if that will be the peak or if there’s one more rise in there. Go Australia! Thank you for your support!

Right, that’s enough from me for now. Thank you to everyone who has pre-ordered Healing Hearts at Bumblebee Barn in any format and to those who get their copy today. I hope you love your visit to the farm.

If you haven’t already dived in, here’s the blurb to hopefully whet your appetite and you can get it from Kindle UK here:

A brand new standalone novel from the bestselling author of the Hedgehog Hollow and Starfish Cafe series!

Welcome to Bumblebee Barn, home to wonderful animals, stunning views and spectacular sunsets – and resident young farmer, Barney.

While Barney loves his life at Bumblebee Barn – a farm that has been in his family for generations – he’s struggling to find someone to share it with. The early mornings quad biking through muddy fields and the long hours looking after the crops and animals are proving to be a deterrent to finding love.

So when his sister, Fizz – desperate for Barney to find his soulmate – sees an advert for Love on the Farm, a new reality TV show to help farmers find love, he has nothing to lose by applying. After all, he isn’t meeting anyone suitable down the traditional route and surely he won’t be picked anyway…?

Thrown into the chaos of reality TV, Barney could never have expected that his whole life would be turned upside down, with buried secrets to be uncovered and his heart on the line. With his family and friends rooting for him, could the magic of Bumblebee Barn heal his broken heart and help him find love on the farm?

Join top 10 bestseller Jessica Redland for a brand new standalone novel of love, family and second chances.

Big hugs
Jessica xx

The one where the past two months have been crazy busy

Do you ever have months where there’s so much going on, you hardly get to pause for breath? I’ve just had two of them and there’s more still to come this month. But it’s (mainly) been wonderful.

I’ve met up with lots of friends, new and old…

Before I became a full-time author, my most recent role was as an HR Tutor – something I did for about five years. I marked assignments for students studying their HR professional qualification, CIPD (Chartered Institute of Personnel & Development), and ran online workshops. However, when I first started in the role, the workshops were run in person on weekends and I met some wonderful students and also some amazing tutors.

One of my former (and favourite – but don’t tell the others!) students, Charlie, was holidaying in Whitby with his husband, Paul, and asked if I’d like to meet them in Robin Hood’s Bay. We worked out it had probably been about seven years since the workshop. It was so good to catch up with Charlie and to meet Paul. I never thought to take a photo but here’s a pic of Robin Hood’s Bay from a previous visit.

From my tutoring role, I also met up with my former colleague, Carol, for a day out in York. York’s my favourite city and so lovely for a wander, especially outside the school holidays on a weekday when it’s a bit quieter. We met at York Station where I spotted this gorgeous postbox topper and completely fell in love with the viking on the top – so perfect for York. Whoever made this is so talented.

I also had a catch-up with a blast from the past. An old friend from school dropped me a message recently on my author page and, as I write under a pen name, it was a bit of a mystery at first as to how she’d found me. It turned out that she’d seen me on the re-run of my appearance on ITV’s The Chase and had recognised me from school. She couldn’t find me on Facebook under my maiden name but couldn’t remember my author name. Then, spookily, she was running a workshop and a delegate mentioned that she was reading one of my books! So she found me and it was so good to meet up, although the memory was certainly tested as it’s 34 years since we left school. We’ll hopefully catch up again before Christmas.

I had several writing-related get-togethers too. My first was with Sharon Booth and Eliza J Scott which was several hours of wonderful chat. There’s a cafe and farm shop on the outskirts of Scarborough which is a great central location as Sharon and Eliza live in different directions and I’m in the middle.

I indulged in the most amazing hot chocolate before lunch and we had a quick look at a few of the animals before we left – and I mean quick because it started raining!

A second writerly meet-up was with author Lizzie Lamb who was also holidaying in Whitby. Sharon and I have both met Lizzie on several occasions at RNA events (Romantic Novelists’ Association) but, with so much happening and so many people to talk to, conversation has always been brief so it was fabulous to have a full afternoon together.

We exchanged signed books, which was lovely. Thank you, Lizzie, for my copy of Scotch on the Rocks and the accompanying bar of chocolate – nom nom!

My next writing-related meet-up was with four of the five-strong admin team on the amazing Facebook group, The Friendly Book Community. If you’re interested in sharing the love for books, this is such a happy, friendly place to be. I was thrilled to be invited to join the group right at the start and watch them grow to a whopping 2.7k members so far.

They’d come to Scarborough for a weekend and I met them for lunch. It was amazing to meet (from L-R in the pic) Sarah, Marie, Louise and Hazel in person (I’m in the middle), having got to know them virtually over the past 18 months or so, and they were just as warm and welcoming in real life. I stayed with them all afternoon and wish I could have stayed longer, but I had a deadline to get home to (more on that later). Love to Adrienne who was unable to join them for the weekend.

Our only disappointment is that we nipped to The Works where they hoped to get a photo of me next to my books on the shelves but the shelves were pretty empty at that point and all my books had sold through.

I have a final writerly catch-up today which I’m really looking forward to. Sharon and I are having lunch with authors Joy Wood and Sylvia Broady. Sylvia is in the same RNA Chapter as us so we have seen her recently but the last time I saw Joy was last September at the RNA’s York Tea. I’m excited to hear all their news.

There’ve been writing events…

I had three writing events lined up for September but only one of them actually went ahead. The first would have been the RNA’s annual York Tea but it was being held a little earlier in September than usual and, unfortunately, the date clashed with a few other events so there weren’t enough tickets sold and that got cancelled. It’s my favourite RNA event so hopefully all will be back to normal next year.

The next cancelled event was to be my first ever festival appearance. I was so excited about appearing as a speaker on the Richmond Walking & Book Festival but my slot was scheduled for 11am on 19th September – the same time and day of the Queen’s funeral – so it couldn’t go ahead. Hopefully I’ll appear next year instead. It was the only day that was cancelled so such a shame that I was booked for that day. What a sad time that was, losing our Queen, and it feeling so sudden too.

What did go ahead in September was a library talk. Stockton Libraries had kindly invited me to speak one evening so I went along to Norton Library and was thrilled to have an audience of roughly twenty there. They’d created an amazing display of my books and a local library user had made the most stunning (and delicious) cupcakes. Mmmm.

I completely fell in love with the kissing hedgehogs in the display and was told they were from Next. I couldn’t find them online but we have a Next Home on a small retail park near us so I nipped there the following day and was thrilled to find one on display so I bagged it!

A huge thank you to Ruth for arranging the evening and the amazing team at the library for being such welcoming hosts. Thank you to all those who attended including a few members of my Facebook group Redland’s Readers who it was lovely to meet in person. I am, however, mortified, as a member of my group came along and I didn’t register who she was. For some reason, I had it into my head that she was coming to my Richmond talk and couldn’t make it to the library. When she said her name, I misheard it too and made no connection at first. Even though we’ve messaged and it’s all sorted, I still feel really bad as I know she was disappointed that I didn’t click who she was. All I can plead is brain drain. There’s so much going on in my head at an event like this and my brain can’t always hold everything.

My friend and amazingly gifted artist Lucy Pittaway came along to support – an extra surprise for some audience members who love her work – and we went for a quick drink afterwards with her and her colleague, Vicki, which rounded off a perfect evening.

I’m excited to announce that, although I hope to speak at the Richmond Walking & Book Festival next year, I will definitely be appearing at a festival. Stockton Libraries collaborate with the Hartlepool, Middlesbrough and Redcar & Cleveland districts to put on an event called Crossing the Tees (genius name – the River Tees running through the area alongside the literary meaning of the phrase). A date for your diary is Sunday 10th June 2023 at 2.00-3.30pm at Ormesby Library, on the outskirts of Middlesbrough. I’ll be on a panel of authors talking about the romance genre. Jane Lovering, a fellow-Boldwood Books author, will be joining me and I’m in the process of securing another author too.

If anyone is an aspiring writer, I’m also going to be running a beginner’s writing workshop on the afternoon of Saturday 9th June. The details of the workshop and the venue will be confirmed later but I’m really looking forward to that.

It was my wedding anniversary in late September (17 years) and we had a family trip up to Whitby and a delicious meal on the way home. I was excited to see a whopping FOUR of my books in Great Reads Whitby (a discount bookstore) including one in the window.

It was a beautiful day, but very windy as you can see from the photos. That sea was definitely wild… and so was my hair!

There was a publication day…

Already looking pretty busy? There’s more! Around all this, I had publication day of Christmas Miracles at Hedgehog Hollow and a separate audio publication day on this occasion as we couldn’t secure the main narrator for the original publication date. Publication day is always busy with announcements, responding to congratulations messages, having the blog tour start, and eagerly watching the chart.

The hedgehogs have been dipping in and out of the Top 100 since publication day and, at the time of writing, they’re currently at #90 which is exciting (they have been higher – woo hoo!). This week, a day shy of 6 weeks since release, they had their 1,000th review/rating on Amazon and I’m so grateful to everyone who has taken the time to share their thoughts.

And some special offers on my Hedgehog Hollow series…

Finding Love at Hedgehog Hollow (book 1) and Christmas Miracles at Hedgehog Hollow (book 6) both went into Prime Reading so are free to Prime Reading subscribers. Finding Love is currently 99p on Kindle.

Although not in Prime reading, book 5 – Chasing Dreams at Hedgehog Hollow – is also currently on a 99p offer so do grab that if you haven’t already done so.

I mentioned writing deadlines a couple of times. These two months have also been deadline-filled. Book 18 is out on 24th January 2023 and is called Healing Hearts at Bumblebee Barn. It’s available to pre-order for Kindle right now (click the title to get to it) although the cover and blurb won’t appear until early November. It will be available to pre-order on other eBook platforms and on Audible nearer the time. It will also be out in all the print formats from publication day too.

I had a deadline to get the first draft in to my editor which I had to extend as I contracted conjunctivitis and had to spend a few days away from the screen. I’m really squeamish with my eyes. You know that episode of Friends where Rachel needs eye drops and the others have to quite literally pin her to the sofa? That was me! I swear the hubby took far too much delight in putting those drops in my eyes!

I made it to the revised deadline but knew my manuscript was a bit of a mess and that I wanted to change one part of the plot and the ending. My editor, Nia, is amazing and she typically agrees with what I’ve already identified is wrong with the story (but didn’t have time to fix) and comes up with some invaluable suggestions of her own. I then had deadlines for getting the 1st round of edits back and the 2nd, which were returned at the weekend. In between those rounds of edits, I came down with Covid for the second time!

Fortunately it was reasonably mild – bad cold, tired – and I’m so thankful it hit me between edits instead of during them as working was too exhausting. I watched lots of films but had hoped to do lots of catching-up on my admin so that all had to be put on hold.

I’ve seen the gorgeous cover and have had the blurb finalised too and can’t wait to share them with readers.

And as if all that wasn’t busy enough, I’ve had a flu jab, hair appointment, physio sessions (I have back/neck/shoulder problems – typical for an author spending too much time hunched over their keyboard!), a tour round the local sixth form ready for my daughter applying there for next September, and an open evening at her school about GCSE revision tips. Phew! Exhausted thinking about it all!

So today I’m off to meet Sharon, Sylvia and Joy as mentioned and then I’m off on my holidays over half-term – a much earned (and needed) rest after a couple of busy months.

Hope September and October have treated you well and hope you’ve enjoyed my photos. Do grab yourself those Hedgehog Hollows on offer if you haven’t already done so. And spread the word!

Big hugs
Jessica xx

The one where Coming Home to Seashell Cottage is on an Audible UK Daily Deal

Hello again! Just stopping by very quickly to let you know that Coming Home to Seashell Cottage – narrated by the fabulous Lucy Brownhill – is currently available on Audible UK for the phenomenal bargain price of £1.99. Woo hoo!

This is the daily deal so it’s available at this price TODAY ONLY (Thursday 29th September 2022) right up till 11.59pm and you can find it here

Coming Home to Seashell Cottage is book 4 in a 4-book series so is best read after the others but the extra great news is that books 1 and 2 (Making Wishes at Bay View and New Beginnings at Seaside Blooms) are both FREE in Audible Plus so there’s only book 3 – Finding Hope at Lighthouse Cove – needed to complete the series and some listeners might have already bagged that on a recent deal.

Having said that, it is a complete story and there’s enough backstory given that you could read it on its own if you really wanted … but why not go for the full series and really get to know the characters and the gradual build-up until you discover what Clare has been hiding in this series finale? The blurb’s below.

This is my very first Audible daily deal so I’m really excited to see where this audiobook ends up in the charts. We’re only at lunchtime and it’s already in the Top 100 at #67 and likely to climb higher as the chart position impact of deals like this usually hits at the end of the day or even the following day. Eek!

Please do spread the word if you know any Audible listeners. Thank you xx

Big hugs
Jessica xx

Coming Home to Seashell Cottage

For Clare O’Connell, home is where the heart aches….

Since the age of 16, Clare O’Connell has lived her life by four strict rules:

  1. Don’t talk about Ireland.
  2. Don’t think about Ireland.
  3. Don’t go to Ireland.
  4. Don’t let anyone in.

And so far, it’s worked well. She’s got a great career, amazing friends, and she’s really happy. The future is all that counts, isn’t it?

However Clare is about to realise that you can run from the past, but you can’t always hide from it.

When her boss insists she travels to Ireland for work, Clare finds herself drawn back to the village of Ballykielty – the home of her family, and the home of her secrets. The one place she vowed never to return to again.

With the door to her past now wide open, the first three rules have gone out of the window. Will Clare stick to rule number four

Can she be brave and face up to her family and the demons of her past? 

An emotional novel of family, friendship and dealing with your past from top 10 best seller Jessica Redland.

The one where it’s audio publication day for Christmas Miracles at Hedgehog Hollow

It’s publication day! Yay! This time it’s still the hedgehogs returning for their sixth instalment but with the audio version.

There isn’t normally a delay between publication formats – releasing a book simultaneously globally in all formats is one of the many amazing things my publisher Boldwood Books do so well. However we needed to have a delay this time around. The fabulous voice actor Emma Swan who has narrated the part of Samantha throughout the series wasn’t available to record the audiobook in time for the 6th September release date due to other commitments. I was given a choice of using a different voice actor or delaying and it was a no-brainer for me. Emma is fantastic and it would be very wrong to change the voice of Samantha on the final book, disorientating listeners and likely getting negative feedback so I held off.

I’m not sure why Audible had a further two-day delay this week to bring out the audio version today instead of Tuesday as planned but the great news is it’s out there now and you can find it on Audible here. I’m delighted to see that it’s already in the Top 500 first thing this morning and should rise higher later today.

Thank you so much to everyone who has been patiently (or perhaps not so patiently!) waiting for the final instalment. I really hope you enjoy listening to Samantha’s final story alongside Fizz’s whose chapters are narrated by Lesley Harcourt.

The Audible Narration add-on for Kindle purchases is also available from today.

Christmas Miracles at Hedgehog Hollow

It’s the countdown to Christmas at Hedgehog Hollow Wildlife Rescue Centre, and everyone is gearing up for a festive season to remember…

It should be the most wonderful time of the year for Samantha and Josh as they prepare for the arrival of their first baby. But life at Hedgehog Hollow rarely goes to plan and the pair are faced with adversaries, old and new, and unexpected challenges to overcome.

Fizz’s job at the heart of the rescue centre is a dream come true but her personal life is more like a nightmare. With her love life a disaster and her past about to dramatically catch up with her, she needs the love and support of her Hedgehog Hollow family more than ever.

As the snow falls over Hedgehog Hollow, will Samantha and Fizz find the Christmas miracle they need to overcome their heartache and find happiness?

Top 10 bestseller Jessica Redland welcomes you back to Hedgehog Hollow this Christmas for the final time in this series for a heartfelt story of love, family, friendship—and hedgehogs of course!

Big hedge-hugs
Jessica xx

The one with the second huge sales milestone & a couple of audio offers

In October last year, I hit a sales milestone I never ever dreamed I’d achieve – half a million sales. This was for sales achieved through Boldwood Books only and not any sales achieved through my previous publisher or as an indie author. Having said that, there’d have been little impact if I added them in. To celebrate the half a million milestone, I did some number crunching and discovered that I’d sold less than 10,000 copies of my books during the 4 year 2 month period pre-Boldwood and across the transition period of a year during which some of my books were still available as indie titles before they had an edit and re-release through Boldwood.

I wrote a blog post at the time all about my journey, the struggle to make sales, and how exceptionally grateful I was to everyone who’d supported me on my journey. I don’t want to repeat everything on this post so, if you’re not familiar with my five-year struggle, you might like to check out that post here. If you’re an aspiring/struggling writer reading this, it may give you some encouragement that it can still happen. I’m living, breathing proof of that!

Eight months later, I am stunned to have achieved another milestone. For sales up until the end of May this year, my Boldwood releases have hit three quarters of a million. Woo hoo!

The latest Hedgehog Hollow book – Chasing Dreams at Hedgehog Hollow – wasn’t released until late June so it isn’t included in this graphic.

Next stop: One million! Eek! At this rate, hopefully I’ll be celebrating that milestone in early(ish) 2023.

I’m so incredibly grateful to my amazing editor, Nia Beynon, the team and authors at Boldwood Books, and anyone who has bought, borrowed, downloaded any of my books in any format, and those who have reviewed and recommended them. You continue to help make my dreams come true and inspire me to keep those books coming.

On a different note, I have a couple of audio offers on at the moment. If you’re an Audible UK subscriber, Finding Hope at Lighthouse Cove and Spring Tides at The Starfish Café are in the 2 for 1 credit sale so why not use your credits to get them both. Lighthouse Cove is the third book in the Welcome to Whitsborough Bay series but the first two are actually FREE to subscribers as part of Audible Plus so you can listen to almost the whole series for such a bargain. Spring Tides is the sequel to Snowflakes Over The Starfish Café which was on an offer recently.

This morning, it was a special moment to see Spring Tides in the Audible Top 50. THANK YOU! (It says ‘books’ below but this means ‘audiobooks’ on the behind the scenes information.)

Wishing you a fabulous week.

Big extremely grateful hugs
Jessica xx

The one where all my books have at least 1,500 reviews

My latest release – Chasing Dreams at Hedgehog Hollow – which was released just over seven weeks ago (28th June) has just hit 1,500 reviews/ratings on Amazon.

Not only is this a milestone for the fifth book in the series but it’s also a milestone for all my books because every single one of the UK releases now has at least 1,500 reviews/ratings on Amazon. I find this quite astonishing because it seems only yesterday when I had only one title approaching 100 and was longing for the others to pass 40! Thank you Boldwood Books for finding me readers and for everyone who has read any of my books and shared the book love. I’m so very grateful.

I’ve done a little number crunching and here are a few discoveries on AMAZON. These are just the UK editions:

Most reviewed/rated book: Snowflakes Over The Starfish Cafe with 5,794. This was helped by being in Prime Reading at the start of the year

Most reviewed/rated book in the Hedgehog Hollow series: I still find it a little weird that it isn’t the first one. The most reviewed is book 2, New Arrivals at Hedgehog Hollow, with 4,840. Incidentally, book 3, Family Secrets at Hedgehog Hollow, is the next most reviewed at 4,598. Book 1, Finding Love at Hedgehog Hollow, has 3,766

Least reviewed/rated book: Aside from Chasing Dreams which has just hit the 1,500 mark, it’s book 3 in the Welcome to Whitsborough Bay series – Finding Hope at Lighthouse Cove – with 1,565. If we’re going to be really pedantic, the series box set actually has the least reviews but, as it the amalgamation of four titles, I’m not classing it separately

Average rating: Every single book has either a 4.6 or 4.7 average. That’s a lot of love out there for Whitsborough Bay (including The Starfish Café) and Hedgehog Hollow

Overall number: I’m so close to an astonishing 50k milestone. I have 49,658 reviews/ratings overall. Eek!

OVER ON AUDIBLE…

Most reviewed/rated audiobook: The Secret to Happiness is the most reviewed/rated with a whopping 3,903. The next closest is Finding Love at Hedgehog Hollow with 1,887. Both these titles are free to subscribers as part of the Audible Plus programme which has led to more listeners trying them so it’s not a surprise they’re the most reviewed although it’s interesting how far ahead The Secret to Happiness is

Least reviewed/rated audiobook: This is Spring Tides at The Starfish Café with 274. Chasing Dreams is ahead of this with 313


My books are on Kobo, Apple and various other sites too but most sales come from Amazon and Audible so I have only explored those for now.

THANK YOU to everyone who has left a review or rating for anything of mine they’ve read or listened to. It’s a lovely way to say a thank you to the author for a book you’ve loved, and on Amazon that activity kicks in their algorithms so massively helps with visibility.

Enjoy the rest of your week.

Big hugs
Jessica xx

The one with all the Top 100 audiobooks

My audiobooks have been having a party over on Audible UK today and I’ve been celebrating something very unexpected – chart domination!

Ok, not complete chart domination – somewhat dramatic choice of word there – but it has been very exciting.

It all started with an email first thing from my fabulous editor – who is also our Publishing and Sales & Marketing Director at Boldwood Books – congratulating me on having two titles in the Audible UK Top 100! I had a look and was stunned to see The Secret to Happiness at #37 and Finding Love at Hedgehog Hollow at #73! Eek!

They’re not on a promotion so I wondered why they’d suddenly stormed the chart. And then it struck me. These two titles are from a selection of six of my audiobooks which are part of the Audible Plus programme and today signalled the start of the second year of the title selection. Some titles may have come out, others been added in, and some will have stayed the same.

In my case, all six of my audiobooks which went in last year have been kept in the programme as Audible have been really impressed with their performance and the impact they’ve had on my other audiobook sales. There’s a mix of start of the series and standalone titles:

  • Making Wishes at Bay View – book 1 in the Welcome to Whitsborough Bay series
  • New Beginnings at Seaside Blooms – book 2 in the Welcome to Whitsborough Bay series
  • The Secret to Happiness – standalone book set in Whitsborough Bay (although connected to All You Need is Love so best read after AYNIL)
  • Christmas at Carly’s Cupcakes – book 2 in the Christmas on Castle Street series
  • Starry Skies Over The Chocolate Pot Café – book 3 in the Christmas on Castle Street series (Note: these story follows on from Carly’s Cupcakes but book 1 Christmas Wishes at the Chocolate Shop is more of a standalone and doesn’t need to be read first – they’re a series as they’re all set on Castle Street at Christmas)
  • Finding Love at Hedgehog Hollow – book 1 in the Hedgehog Hollow series

Subscribers to Audible can listen to the selection on Audible Plus for FREE and this is a great way of trying new authors and even new genres. It has absolutely paid off as I’ve had messages from listeners saying they’d never have tried a particular title of mine but gave it a go as it was free, were hooked, and had listened to the whole series or even my entire back catalogue as a result. How lovely is that?

I’m assuming that there was a big email campaign about the fresh catalogue this morning which is what prompted the leap in the chart for those two audiobooks which, incidentally, are my two bestselling titles across all formats.

I was so chuffed with this unexpected charting but then hubby appeared in my office asking me if I’d looked at the Romance category chart because those two titles were #3 and #5 respectively. Double eek!

After I’d done some excited squealing, I decided to look at the rest of the Romance chart to see whether any of the other titles were there and I couldn’t quite believe what I discovered!

So that was nine of my sixteen titles in the Top 100 in the Romance chart – only three of which are in the Audible Plus programme – and ALL of the Hedgehog Hollow audiobooks in the Top 50. Woo hoo!

I’ve been out today for lunch and a wonderful catch-up with my bestie, author Sharon Booth, and there’s no WiFi or phone signal at the pub we go to so I had hubby keeping a watch on the chart all day but nothing moved. When I got home early this evening, I did a quick check and there had been some movement at last. Some titles had dropped but New Arrivals at Hedgehog Hollow (book 2 in the series) had climbed a little higher from #39 to #31 and Spring Tides at The Starfish Café had charted in the Romance chart too!

So, although it wasn’t at exactly the same time, 10% of the Romance chart has been given to my audiobooks today. I can’t quite believe it! There are over 200,000 audiobooks on Audible so it blows my mind to see my titles in top charts.

A huge thank you to my amazing main narrators Lucy Brownhill and Emma Swan who have taken the leads on all my audiobooks between them, and to an amazing cast of talented narrators who’ve brought life to the second perspectives in the stories: Gareth Bennett-Ryan, James Dryden, Polly Edsell, Kitty Kelly, and Gloria Sanders.

And thank you to you the listeners for making today’s chart ‘domination’ possible. I’m so very grateful. Happy listening.

Big hugs
Jessica xx

The one with all the birthdays

We’re celebrating three birthdays in our house today – 11th March 2022 – and another one tomorrow. Today it’s my husband’s birthday, our dog’s, and I have a book birthday today and tomorrow.

A huge happy birthday to my amazing husband, Mark, who is impossible to buy for so has chosen his own gift today. He is such an amazing supporter of my writing and I’m so exceptionally grateful and lucky to have him.

Happy 6th birthday to our sprocker spaniel, Ella, who may now be 42 in human years but still believes she’s a puppy.

And happy 1st book birthday to All You Need Is Love.

Many of my books have two birthdays – like the Queen! That’s because they were originally released by me as an indie writer or through my original publishing deal but, as they barely made any impact pre-Boldwood, I count their re-release through the amazing Boldwood Books as their official birthday.

All You Need Is Love is one of my personal favourites. I absolutely love Jemma and Sam’s emotional story intertwined with the challenges Jemma’s mum is facing and the backdrop of a specialist teddy bear shop on Whitsborough Bay’s Castle Street. A few lovely achievements during its first year include:

  • 40,000 copies sold across all formats
  • Over 1,600 reviews/ratings on Amazon
  • Over 300 reviews/ratings on Audible
  • Kindle UK Top 100 (highest position #81)
  • Kindle Australia Top 50
  • Audible UK Top 50
  • Several #1 Best Seller category tags

I have another book birthday to celebrate tomorrow so I’m including that here too rather than doing a separate blog post. Coming Home to Seashell Cottage is two tomorrow (12th March).

This is another personal favourite of mine. It’s the fourth (and final) book in the first series I penned – ‘Welcome to Whitsborough Bay’ – and it’s the book where I found my voice and the type of book I really wanted to write. Full of twists and turns and packing an emotional punch, it was a game-changer for me and I’ll always be immensely proud of it. Across two years, it has also had some lovely achievements:

  • 43,000 copies sold across all formats
  • Over 1,800 reviews/ratings on Amazon
  • Nearly 325 reviews/ratings on Audible
  • Kindle UK Top 200 (highest position #165)
  • Kindle Australia Top 100
  • Audible UK Top 50
  • Apple UK Top 25 (and #5 in the Romance category)
  • Several #1 Best Seller category tags

Coming Home to Seashell Cottage is currently on a 2 for 1 Audible Credit Deal which ENDS TOMORROW at 11.59pm (Saturday 12th March) so it’s the final chance to get this on a deal.

I’m so thrilled to see it in the overall Audible Top 50 as I write this! THANK YOU xxx

So a HAPPY BIRTHDAY to my man, my dog and two of the books in my life!

It’s funny looking at the sales figures for the two because All You Need is Love got off to a bit of a slow start and it looked like it was going to be my least-sold book but that has changed and it is only just behind Coming Home to Seashell Cottage in sales figures but in half the time. Which then makes me feel sorry for Coming Home to Seashell Cottage. I wonder if it’s because All You Need is Love can be read as a standalone book so new readers are more likely to pick that up than a four-book series. Hmm.

I can tie yourself into knots wondering why some books sell better than others so it’s best not to think about it too much and just focus on how incredibly grateful I am that they sell at all!

If you’re celebrating a birthday today, tomorrow or any time this month, I wish you all the best. Thank you as always to everyone who has bought/borrowed/downloaded these two books (or any others) in any format, and/or has spread the word. It’s so much appreciated.

Big birthday hugs
Jessica xx