Scotland – my Home from Home
To me, Scotland is the most beautiful place I’ve ever visited. I’ve stayed virtually everywhere, except the far north west coast. I’ve driven the road to Applecross, up and down the Pass of the Cattle with its hairpin bends. I’ve taken a ferry from Uig at the top of Skye to Lochmaddy and back. I’ve driven around the Isle of Arran. I’ve stayed in Kyle of Lochalsh, Kirkcubright, Port Logan, Troon, Onich, Inverinate, Crail, Inverness, Brora, Portessie, Cullen, Whitehills, Gullane and a tiny place called Nostie along the coast from Eileann Donan castle. I love the mountains, the lochs, the coastline, and the people. Scotland is my heaven on earth, where I feel at peace so when I planned to write a series of books, I wanted to set them somewhere I love. Finally, I settled on the Moray coast. I have stayed there, in various villages, many times. Sometimes it has rained, sometimes the weather has been glorious, but regardless, it is always beautiful.
The Call of Home series is set around the town of Buckie, a fishing town that isn’t very glamorous, but the scenery is spectacular. The nearby beaches at Banff and Cullen are great places to watch the sun go down. Nearby, seals haul themselves up onto rocks to sun themselves which I describe in the stories. I’ve seen dolphins once, just like Brice mentions in Returning Home. Like him, I’ve never yet managed to see a whale. Their experiences of the area are mine. I’ve sat at Banff links watching the dogs romp along the sand. I’ve visited Duff House. I haven’t ridden along the beach, on a horse but I’ve seen others take to the expansive sands at Burghead. I’ve sat, like Seth, at the beach in Hopeman.
When you write a story, you sometimes base them in places you haven’t visited, but I wanted to feel close to these stories, and to have seen what my characters see, have felt the breeze and the rain on my face, just like them. This is why I chose to base them in Scotland, to hopefully give them a reality it isn’t always possible to manage, even with a lot of research. I hope I’ve given some impression of the area for people who have never been there. If you get the chance, just go. I promise you will love it. I can’t keep away, and even now my current WIP is set in the Highlands near the famous village of Glencoe. The setting can make a story and give it an extra dimension. Placing the Call of Home series in Scotland does this for me. I hope it does the same for you.
You can never escape from yourself.
When Darach McNaughton returns to his home town, the one thing he isn’t looking for is love. But when he meets the mysterious Brice Drummond, his investigative instinct isn’t the only thing aroused.
After a gang beats Brice Drummond, leaves him for dead, and needing to use a wheelchair, he ends up in a witness protection program. His only company is a beautiful cat aptly named Princess. He creates stunning pieces of art, but allows no one into his life—until a handsome policeman appears out of nowhere.
On a snowy night, Darach McNaughton returns a crying cat to its owner and is immediately curious about the beautiful man with the tattoos. Bit by bit, Darach uncovers the shocking truth about Brice’s history. Can he get past what he discovers? Can Brice let someone into his life? Or will the past catch up with them both and tear their fledgling love apart?
Reader advisory: Dubious consent. Recollections of physical abuse, emotional/mental abuse, torture and drug abuse. Profanity.
Amazon UK: https://www.amazon.co.uk/Returning-Home-Call-Book-ebook/dp/B01H3MG25E
Pride Publishing: https://www.pride-publishing.com/book/returning-home
About the Author
Originally from South Wales, Alexa has lived for over thirty years in the North West of England. Now retired, after a long career in teaching, she devotes her time to her obsessions.
Alexa began writing when her favourite character was killed in her favourite show. After producing a lot of fanfiction she ventured into original writing.
She is currently owned by a mad cat and spends her time writing about the men in her head, watching her favourite television programmes and usually crying over her favourite football team.