Friday, 23 December 2016

Claire L. Brown about The Poppy Garden

When I was planning The Poppy Garden it didn’t cross my mind that a large section of the book would fall around Christmas but with the timings it just worked out that way and I’m so glad it did.

One of the main themes of the book is family and well there’s no better time than Christmas to remind us all just how precious family is. 

Christmas at The Poppy Garden is a different kind of Christmas.  It’s about giving those who need it a place to go to feel safe and supported.  My grandfather is the inspiration behind this book, it’s about they ways in which he coped with PTSD and how I grew up watching him cope and develop strategies without even knowing it. 

Christmas in my story is a pivotal moment for the two characters and it was an amazing section to write but also an amazingly hard one too.  Christmas is when you want to be with the ones you love and when it’s not the Christmas you dreamed of it’s a little sad but it’s about how you approach that disappointment and find something in that moment to be grateful for. 

Not only has writing The Poppy Garden been the proudest writing moment of my life it’s also led to the establishment of The Poppy Garden Appeal, which aims to provide a real life Poppy Garden for service personnel and their families to help support them through the hard times, celebrate their good times and be there when you need somewhere for the in between times. 

The blurb

What would you do if the love of your life didn't know who you were?
What if he forgot you?

Forgot the first time you met, your first kiss, the day he proposed and the day you married?  

What if six months after your perfect start it was all taken away in the blink of an eye?

Sky Flynn thought she had it all, she was the happiest she’d ever been from the moment she met Nick Robinson until the moment a military officer showed up at her door, then things changed. 

Fighting in Afghanistan Nick is injured in a roadside bombing.  Brought home in critical condition, he faces a long fight to recover from his wounds, traumatic brain injury and PTSD. 

Waking up from sedation he cannot remember the last 12 months of his life, blotting out meeting and marrying his wife, Sky.  The more she tries to be there for him the more he pushes her away seeking solace in broken relationship with his ex as it's the only one he can remember. 

Fighting to save her marriage and help her husband recover from both physical and mental scars of war Sky has to find away to cope and overcome.  With the support of her in-laws, Nick's uncle, his doctor and family she comes up with an idea to see her through his recovery and to help others like him 

Inspired by memories of her grandfather and how he channeled his undiagnosed PTSD into his garden she sets out to create somewhere for recovering service men to go, to assist in their recovery and create a place of beauty to share with their families.

Constantly challenged by Nick's demanding ex-girlfriend, Rebecca and Nick's ever-changing condition.  She finds hope and encouragement in the garden and those who rally round to help. 

As Nick presses on with his life and decides marrying Rebecca is his only way forward, Sky has to find a way to move on, be that with handsome police officer Joe or on her own.

Can the beauty of the garden she creates heal her husband’s wounds and bring him home to her forever?

Book Links

Author Links

About the Author

Claire L Brown was born in Sunderland, Northeast England.  She currently resides in her native Northeast with her dog Hero and her family.    

Claire is a BA Honors Graduate in Media with American History from Sunderland University.

Claire launched a blog site in 2015 to chart her work as a writer and other interests including, movies, theatre, beauty products, music and her beloved pet. 

Claire concentrates mostly on fantasy, mystery, romance and thriller genres.

With the publication of her latest novel, The Poppy Garden, on 11th November 2016, Claire L Brown has created an amazing idea to help veterans of our armed forces to deal with their PTSD.

Inspired by her grandfather, SGT Joseph Robinson, who was part of the RAF during WWII, and how he dealt with his experiences of war by throwing his effort and his passion into his garden - the idea of The Poppy Garden was born.

In the novel, the issues around PTSD and how this affects not only the veteran but also their family are looked at and examined in more detail.

We aim to establish The Poppy Garden Trust - a charity to create a Poppy Garden in various areas of the UK for veterans to seek assistance and support and create their own poppy garden experience.

This will be a centre to provide support, assistance and recuperation facilities, retraining and family support.

We are currently in the process of identifying a suitable property and site in the North East for the very first Poppy Garden to be developed.

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