Half Dutch and born between the in-and-out gates of a distillery on the borders of Wandsworth and Battersea, way before the area became chic, I loved the whole London culture vibe as I was growing up. I went to Grey Coat Hospital Girls’ Grammar School in Victoria (a real privilege – I am grateful for the experience to this day), and then on to read BA Jt Hons Modern Languages at the University of Bristol. I loved my early career as a Modern Languages (French and German) teacher, working in both the state and private sector. Writing has been in my blood for as long as I can remember. Following on from freelance journalism, my work as Editor for Travelsphere holidays was fantastic – travel is a great passion and I am blessed to have done a lot of it, and to have lived for a spell in Spain and in The Middle East. I also enjoyed editing Embrace Magazine for a couple of years – an intensely busy time, bonkers but good. Life has not all been easy. When one of the closest people to me died I thought that the world would end and it almost did. When I surfaced, I realised that it had simply changed forever, and decided to honour her memory with the passion I try to inject into everything I do. The Thinking Tank was inspired by a desire to turn life’s crappy stuff into something meaningful and enriching…our past doesn’t always have to dictate our future. I am now living in Lincolnshire with my husband and two chihuahuas.
1969, London, England and Sally, a little girl dressed in brown, visits Father Christmas at a church fair. He rescues her as she trips and stumbles into his arms. As he hoists her onto his lap she thinks she feels the breath of a kiss on her cheek.
It is 2003 and in Rutland, England, Sarah’s relationship with her daughter Rebekah is going from bad to worse. Torn apart by family secrets yet locked together by a solemn promise, the future for both seems bleak. But the mysterious and haunting circumstances of a hospital visit set Sarah on a path of discovery from which there is no turning back.
Sarah travels to Spain in search of answers – but even before she arrives it becomes clear that offers of help rarely come without strings…
Only by confronting the truth can Sarah move forward, but that means revealing the one secret she herself cannot face.
Jae De Wylde steers us masterfully through the twists and turns of this splendidly paced, poignant and compelling story of love, identity and belonging.
Here’s what one of my readers from Amazon had to say about The Thinking Tank:
‘This a great achievement for a debut novel: confidently written and incredibly perceptive about emotions and relationships. The lead character’s analysis of her actions and feelings can be uncomfortably intense at times but then that is the heart of the story. The author’s skill really shows in the descriptions of the girl Sally’s experiences, with every painful detail deftly captured and exhibiting a maturity of writing that belies the fact this is a first novel. I don’t usually choose this kind of book but I found it an enjoyable and compelling read.’
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