Emotional Geology by Linda Gillard

ISBN 1-905175-078 Price £7.99

Available June 2005

Read an extract from the book here.


‘I talk to the island. I don’t speak, but my thoughts are directed towards it. Sometimes it replies. Never in words, of course. I miss trees. You don’t notice at first that there are hardly any trees here, just that the landscape is very flat, as if God had taken away all the hills and mountains and dumped them on neighbouring Skye. But eventually you realise it’s trees that you miss. Trees talk back.’


Rose Leonard is on the run from her life.

Taking refuge in a remote island community, she cocoons herself in work, silence and solitude in a house by the sea. But she is haunted by her past, by memories and desires she’d hoped were long dead.

Rose must decide whether she has in fact chosen a new life or just a different kind of death. Life and love are offered by new friends, her lonely daughter, and most of all Calum, a fragile younger man who has his own demons to exorcise.

But does Rose, with her tenuous hold on life and sanity, have the courage to say yes to life and put her past behind her?


‘Very readable and moving. It has a beautiful cover and is well-written and unusual. It's about a bi-polar woman, recovering from terrible trauma and it's not nearly as grim as that sounds. What I most liked about it was the writer's evident love for fabric, handiwork of various kinds and the way she brings a whole landscape to life. I'm looking forward to her next.’

Adele Geras

‘Emotional geology is smoothly plotted and approachable. Gillard manages to draw her Uist characters credibly.

West Highland Free Press

‘A book about madness, memory and mountaineering that defies categorisation. The book’s narrative style is spare and kaleidoscopic; the plot layered in time like an archeological dig. It is a novel interspersed with poems, a study of the relationship between madness and creativity, and above all, a love story – filled with passion and paint-stripping honesty.’

Highlands & Islands Arts Journal

‘The prose style is quiet, and whispering, and effectively therapeutic.’

The Hebridean

‘A compelling, touching, tender book with many beautifully crafted and heart wrenching parts. The story is complicated which makes for a surprising read.’

Depression Alliance

‘A tightly woven literary fabric of many emotional threads, which result in an engrossing and satisfying read. It may hold particular appeal for anyone who has experienced extreme distress, but its lucid prose and powerful description – and a penultimate series of emotional bombshells that play like that crucial cinematic ‘twist’ we all increasingly expect in film – result in an un-put-downable page-turner that is likely to captivate readers across the board.’

Well? Magazine

Author Profile : Linda Gillard

Linda Gillard graduated from Bristol University and trained as an actress at the Bristol Old Vic Theatre School. For eight years she pursued an acting career, the highlight of which was sharing a table in The National Theatre canteen with Sir Michael Gambon. (The lowlight was playing a fairy for four rainy months in an open-air production of A Midsummer Night’s Dream in London’s Regent’s Park).

Whilst under-employed at the National Theatre, Linda accidentally became a successful freelance journalist and wrote many articles based on her self-sufficient “Good Life” in rural Cambridgeshire. For twelve years she had a humorous column in Ideal Home. Linda ran her two careers concurrently for a while, then decided to give up acting to raise a family and write from home. Twelve years later she re-trained as a primary teacher and taught in Norfolk specialising in English and Art.

A further rethink entailed giving up teaching and downshifting to the Isle of Skye, realising a long-held dream to move to a Scottish island and write full-time.

Linda now lives with her teacher husband in a big house overlooking the Cuillins, a mountain range featured in her novel; Emotional Geology.

You can read an interview with Linda and find out more about why and how she wrote Emotional Geology by clicking here.

Also by this author

A Lifetime Burning by Linda Gillard

ISBN: 1 905175 256

Published: June 2006

Read an extract from the book here

‘The Dunbars are a good-looking family – even the old ones – and massed in black, as we are now, impressive. We’re a clannish lot, loyal to a fault - even when we hate each other. And I should know - flighty Flo, wicked Aunt Flora, poor Rev. Wentworth’s mad wife who, for everyone’s sake, really should have been kept in the attic….’ CLICK HERE for more information.

Author Links

Linda has her own website you can visit at www.lindagillard.co.uk

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