In 1997 I read Ferney, a love story centred on reincarnation. Set in Somerset it was one of my favourite books of that year and remains so to today. Now we have its sequel. Set sixteen years later where Ferney and his love Gally may find each other again. How they do and what draws them back to their roots in a Somerset village is magically handled by this master storyteller. But there is one who remains from Gally's past, a man who will suffer badly by her reappearance and my heart bleeds for him. This is a beautiful story in its own right but read Ferney first and be truly enchanted. October 2012 Book of the Month.
In a recent interview with The Bookseller, James Long explained that it had been a challenge writing a sequel to Ferney that would also work as a standalone novel for new readers. Long said that "you either bore people with the complexity of the scenario who already know about it, or you baffle them." Happily for us, after the first drafts, he hit upon a clever solution...
In a Somerset village, a teenage boy confronts a teacher with a story he should know nothing about. The boy's impossible knowledge uncovers memories Michael Martin has done his utmost to forget - and soon propels him into danger. As Martin confronts his past once more, three girls arrive in the village of Pen Selwood, one of them drawn by an ancient instinct to find a man called Ferney. Her actions reignite a love story, an instinct that cannot be broken, irrespective of the hurt and danger it brings to those around them...
Below is a review of The Lives he Left Behind by a Lovereading member...
'Ferney by James Long was published in 1998. The Lives She Left Behind is the long-awaited sequel, published fourteen years later in 2012, which continues the magical story of Ferney & Gally. This sequel tells the story of two teenagers, Luke and Jo, who are, in fact, the reincarnated Ferney and Gally. It is impossible to stop turning the pages until they have found each other and have resolved the many issues which face them and those around them. The book is well written with some beautiful lines throughout. Ferney’s joy and relief at remembering Gally are expressed in these words – “she came bursting out of the same lost past, a miracle, to stand there beside the teacher where she should never have been. The girl with a hundred faces now had only one.” Integral with the ongoing love story of Ferney and Gally, and the historical detail which accompanies it, is the story of Mike. He was Gally’s husband in the previous book and is now being investigated for murder. This is unthinkable and, after some anxious moments, it is resolved cleverly and satisfactorily thanks to the return of Gally. This book is a worthy successor to Ferney – it has been well worth the long wait to find out what happened to Ferney & Gally. I loved both books.' Hilary Stookes
Praise for James Long:
'engaging time-slip love story ... Definitely one for fans of The Time Traveller's Wife'
'Romantic, heart-breaking and gripping, this is a worthy successor to satisfy the many fans of the original' Woman's Weekly
Publication date: 27/09/2012
Publisher: Quercus Publishing Plc
|Publication date:||27th September 2012|
|Publisher:||Quercus Publishing Plc|
|Genres:||Books of the Month, eBook Favourites, Family Drama, Historical Fiction, Relationship Stories,|
James Long was a BBC TV news correspondent until the end of the 1980s. After two years starting and running an international TV station out of Zurich, he returned to England to concentrate on writing, which had always been his first love. He wrote four thrillers, then went back to a story he had begun many years earlier and which grew into Ferney. The book was originally born from his disappointment at being unable to buy a derelict cottage he had found near the village of Penselwood and that house became the centre of the story. Many more novels followed, ...More About James Long