Brentwood, 1.35am: 23°C, broken clouds

Book Club with Sylvia Kent & return of guest writer, Laura Burkin (July 2020)


Book Club with Sylvia Kent and a welcome return to our guest writer, Laura Burkin. Slightly different to our last interview in April 2019 when we were all in the studio together (see pictures).  I chatted with Sylvia and then Laura, by telephone, for this months disjointed Book Club.

Sylvia talks Billericay Readers Group, Brentwood Writers Circle, Brentwood’s Across the World & Laura talks about her life as a journalist, West Ham Football Club, her soon to be published book and Brentwood Writers Circle 80th Celebrations


Billericay Readers are currently reading – Where the Crawdads Sing by Delia Owens

For years, rumors of the “Marsh Girl” have haunted Barkley Cove, a quiet town on the North Carolina coast. So in late 1969, when handsome Chase Andrews is found dead, the locals immediately suspect Kya Clark, the so-called Marsh Girl. But Kya is not what they say. Sensitive and intelligent, she has survived for years alone in the marsh that she calls home, finding friends in the gulls and lessons in the sand. Then the time comes when she yearns to be touched and loved. When two young men from town become intrigued by her wild beauty, Kya opens herself to a new life–until the unthinkable happens.

Perfect for fans of Barbara Kingsolver and Karen Russell, Where the Crawdads Sing is at once an exquisite ode to the natural world, a heartbreaking coming-of-age story, and a surprising tale of possible murder. Owens reminds us that we are forever shaped by the children we once were, and that we are all subject to the beautiful and violent secrets that nature keeps.



Laura Burkin

Book Synopsis (awaiting publishing date)

Eve Taylor is stunned to inherit an old manor house in the country, in her Great-Aunt Alice’s will. No one in the family knew of its existence.

Intrigued as why her Great-Aunt never spoke about Rosebush Manor, Eve embarks on a journey and discovers the Manor is despised by local villagers as it stands under a dark cloud having played host to murder, blackmail and many other secrets.

As she delves deeper into the past, Eve finds herself fighting to clear her Great Aunt’s name in the unsolved murder as well as battling to restore the Manor back into the hearts of the village community once again.



I am a freelance author/columnist. My 12th book BRENTWOOD IN 50 BUILDINGS is now in bookshops, & work has been published in national, regional and on-line press. Following Freelance Writer of the Year award (Writing Magazine) my work has appeared in 75 titles and my FOLKLORE OF ESSEX contributed to Channel 5’s film COUNTY SECRETS. The History Press published THE WOMAN WRITER obtained at the British Library. This book outlines the provenance of the SWWJ’s 1894 foundation and includes our pioneering members in journalism, literature & poetry. The famous Joyce Grenfell, former SWWJ President enjoys a dedicated chapter. My books were reviewed in The Times and other dailies. As SWWJ’s archivist. I’m immersed in new historical research, contributing to on-line press, see my downloadable Kindle books. Also Facebook,Twitter & Amazon @sylviaakent & film/audio clips now added. Latest titles are BARKING & DAGENHAM FROM OLD PHOTOGRAPHS and BRENTWOOD IN 50 BUILDINGS. I was invited to become a Fellow of the SWWJ and recently won the John Walter Silver Salver for 2018 and 2019. I broadcast on PhoenixFM, BBC Essex and other stations. Current page views 370,000

Please note that pictures are from April 2019

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