At the risk of sounding like a stalker, the final night at the Grimsby Author Series was my third time at a Jennifer Robson event. At each event, I have learned something new about her books and her writing process. On Monday, she spoke about Goodnight from London, which is her only book that remains on my TBR pile. Instead of repeating details from the Burlington event where she spoke about the same book or the Brantford evening where she spoke about her pending book, The Gown, I will share only the new insights from the Grimsby event.
Despite many all nighters (more than during her many years of academia), deadlines and waiting for reviews, Jennifer described writing as as “the best job I have ever had”. She admitted that she was feeling “jittery” after handing in the final draft of her next book early in the day and spoke of the solitary pursuit of her novels when she “left alone with my thoughts and the people I am creating” along with her dog and cat.
Jennifer is a solid researcher and works diligently to be true to history which is the “scaffolding I hang the book on”. She writes about strong, “ordinary women who “find themselves in really interesting places” and who “begin in a place of relative powerlessness but by the end find agency and power”.
“No male billionaire will ever rescue my female character, they will rescue themselves”.
After hearing Jennifer speak at multiple events, I respect her commitment to strong, female characters who exist in and accurate, historical narrative. It is great for readers to learn through fiction which is starting point for researching more details about the World Wars. I look forward to reading Goodnight from London and will watch for her next book, The Gown which takes place in the bleak years, after WWII, as Princess Elizabeth prepares to marry.
Jennifer provided a strong finish to a great season of terrific books and engaging authors. Thanks to the Grimsby Library, Ken and all the dedicated volunteers and donors who bring together a vibrant crowd of readers to celebrate and share a love of reading!!!