Troubador Poppy's Seed

Released: 28/02/2017

ISBN: 9781785899195

eISBN: 9781788038164

Format: Paperback/eBook

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Poppy's Seed


“They had talked about it for years. Looked forward to it. It was their dream. Somehow the reality isn’t living up to the dream.”

When Emily and Peter Stanchester retire to Lyme Regis, they both struggle to adapt to their new life. Peter misses his routine and the feeling of being important and useful; Emily misses her freedom and her friends at work. The happy retirement they had been looking forward to seems out of reach and their once-unshakeable marriage is on the brink of falling apart.

Practical and optimistic, Emily adjusts more quickly. She finds new interests and makes new friends. But with no clear picture of how to spend his retirement, Peter is at a loss. He has no outside interests and feels useless and worthless. Left alone at home, he becomes resentful, moody and needy.

When Emily meets local artist Poppy James, she is instantly drawn to her. With her bohemian lifestyle, dubious reputation and total disregard for convention, Poppy is unlike anyone Emily has ever known. Peter, too, is fascinated by her, and flattered when she turns to him for advice. But is Poppy really who she says she is? And what exactly does she want from them both?

Poppy’s Seed is a contemporary novel that explores the changing dynamics of relationships at different points in life. It will appeal to fans of William Boyd, Anne Tyler and Maggie O’Farrell and readers interested in stories about women’s lives and relationships.

Reviews of Poppy's Seed on Amazon.

5.0 out of 5 stars Fantastic read
By LJ on 1 Feb. 2017

I loved the two other books by this author and was thrilled to see she had written a new one!

This is her best yet! Although I don’t know Lyme Regis that well I really felt like I was living there with Peter and Emily.

I am too young to really appreciate the difficulties they were having in their marriage but older friends of mine have told me that retirement is a hard time, especially for men.

Poppy is an interesting character and I like the way you never know exactly what is going on in her mind.

I loved it and highly recommend it to anyone who likes books about relationships.

5.0 out of 5 stars Loved it!
By Susan Price on 14 Feb. 2017

I really loved this book. Bethany's writing style draws you in to the story so quickly and her description of every day domestic life and relationships is so real, a great read.

5.0 out of 5 stars... little slow to begin with - I was as bored by their retirement as Emily and Peter were - ...
By Rah Cattell on 18 Feb. 2017

A little slow to begin with - I was as bored by their retirement as Emily and Peter were - but this is a device and it soon speeds up . I really enjoyed the plotline, characters, locations and prose. Bethany writes very naturally with a really good instinct for conversation, character and sex scenes ! The characters have stayed with me and there were some moments that were so viscerally described they created deep impressions. Well done Bethany - I am looking forward to your next one!

5.0 out of 5 stars Great Read
By A M Way on 8 Mar. 2017

I really enjoyed this book. The characters are really believable and the story quite riveting as it unfolds. Couldn't put it down!

5.0 out of 5 stars I loved this book
By Tracy Auton on 10 Jun. 2017

I loved this book. Slightly different to the sort of book I normally would choose to read but very well written and entertaining. I found Peter extremely irritating, how Emily can tolerate his bad moods. This is a well written book about relationships, the ups and downs, and how selfish and thoughtless a person like Poppy can be, with the lack of consideration for another person's emotional feelings or attachment. I was sorry when the book ended.,

Somerset Living

Wellington Edge Magazine

Female First

This Is The West Country

Somerset County Gazette

Books Monthly

Mature Times


That's Books

Peter and Emily struggle to settle into their new way of life once retired to Lyme Regis. However they both encounter an artist in the small town, who is about to affect both their lives. Although this book had somewhat of a slowish start, mainly with some necessary scene setting, it is worth it. The story begins to unfold and the well drawn and believable characters reveal themselves.

I found this a very enjoyable read with a believable and interesting storyline. Its also refreshing to read about book me cover 50 where the story is not about terminal illness, dementia or death!

by Alexa Barber

Poppy's Seed is a wonderfully refreshing new read to me. It's so rare to read a book about retiring couples, from what I understand from family it can be a really difficult time and this comes across in the book. I'm too young to identify with the main characters in this novel but it is written so very well, it is easy to almost place myself in their shoes. You are transported to their home in Lyme Regis and it's very hard to put the book down and leave!
I have already recommended to members of my family who can't wait to read it!

by Hannah Brooker

A most unusual theme, very well written. Retirement portrayed in a very eye opening manner! Compelling reading, if just a little bizarre!

by Beverley Crofts

Bethany Askew

Bethany Askew is the author of five novels:

The Time Before, The World Within, Out of Step, Counting the Days and Poppy’s Seed.

She has also written a short story, The Night of the Storm, and she writes poetry.

Future projects include a new short story, this one for the young adult market, and another full-length novel.

In her spare time she enjoys reading, music, theatre, walking, Pilates, dancing and voluntary work.

Bethany is married and lives in Somerset.

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