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April Book of the Month: The Lido by Libby Page. Ask Libby a question ahead of the author webchat on Tuesday 7 May at 9pm
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SorchaMumsnet · 04/04/2019 12:27

Our bookclub read for April is Libby Page's debut novel, The Lido, a heart-warming and inspiring tale about an age-gap friendship and taking a stand for the important things in life.

Find out more about the book and read or listen to an extract. And then grab a copy and join us in reading The Lido ahead of the author webchat on Tuesday 7 May at 9pm.

Buy the paperback now for £5.75

Sponsored by Orion Books

April Book of the Month: The Lido by Libby Page. Ask Libby a question ahead of the author webchat on Tuesday 7 May at 9pm
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LibbyPage · 07/05/2019 21:50

@impostersyndrome

Hi just spotted this. I loved your book. It was so good on being lonely in a crowd. And your description of the streets around the lido just brought it to life even though I’ve never visited there. Have you lived in the district yourself?


Hi impostersyndrome, so pleased to hear you enjoyed my book - thank you. I lived in Brixton when I was a student so know the area quite well, although it's been a little while since I lived there so when I was writing I went back on regular visits and wrote some 'sketches' while I was there (for example sitting in a café and watching what went on around me, or visiting the market). A lot from those visits made it into the book - I wanted to try and make it feel as authentic as possible. I do use my creative licence somewhat - so some places are slightly altered for the purpose of the book - but the most important thing I wanted to capture was the spirit of the place.
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FernieB · 07/05/2019 21:50

Thanks for answering my questions Libby. I'm looking forward to reading your new book now.

Just one more question if I may? Your descriptions of 'The Panic' are vivid - is this something you've experienced?

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LibbyPage · 07/05/2019 21:55

@SorchaMumsnet

I agree with *@MintyT* that The Lido would make a great film. Who would be your dream Rosemary and Kate?


Thanks SorchaMumsnet! I have actually sold the film rights to the book so hopefully there will be a film (although I know these things can take a long time)!

It's so hard for me to pick a dream Rosemary or Kate! When I'm writing, the most important thing about a character is their personality. So I don't necessarily have a picture-perfect image in my head of the two women, but more a sense of who they are as people. We have such a wonderful choice of great older British actresses who'd make wonderful Rosemarys (although I have heard that Dame Judi does love swimming - just saying!!) but for Kate perhaps it might be nice to see a fresh new face given her character is just starting out in the world. Either way, it would be so exciting to see the characters I invented in my head brought to life on film! Whoever played either character would just have to be prepared to do some swimming!
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SorchaMumsnet · 07/05/2019 22:01

And sadly that's about all we've got time for. Thanks for joining us Libby and for giving such thoughtful answers. All the best with the next novel!

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LibbyPage · 07/05/2019 22:02

@FernieB

Thanks for answering my questions Libby. I'm looking forward to reading your new book now.

Just one more question if I may? Your descriptions of 'The Panic' are vivid - is this something you've experienced?


Hi FernieB - thanks so much and hope you enjoy the second one!

No problem at all, I'm here to answer questions! I'm glad to hear you felt those descriptions were vivid because yes, they were largely based on my own experiences. I've experienced panic attacks on and off over the years - they were particularly bad when I was in my early 20s but I still get them very occasionally, now usually only when on very crowded trains!

One thing I've found through writing about them in my book is how many people have reached out to me to say they have / have had them too, be it people involved in the publishing process, readers and even close friends I've known for years. When they were particularly bad for me I didn't really talk about them, but since opening up with friends it's really surprised me to discover how many people I know have been through the same thing. I think people are starting to talk much more openly about mental health in general now which I think is such a great thing. I felt a responsibility when writing to put in some honest accounts of being a twenty-something woman - the loneliness and also the panic that I experienced at the time but didn't really discuss. I hope anyone reading who can relate to 'The Panic' will take some comfort in knowing they are not alone, but also that it's possible to get through it and to reach a much happier place. Swimming and exercise in general have been so helpful to me and my all-round mental health.
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SuckingDieselFella · 07/05/2019 22:02

Thank you for such a detailed reply! It's really interesting to read how you went about it.

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LibbyPage · 07/05/2019 22:07

@SorchaMumsnet

We'll let you answer the questions already here but before I forget, here are the ones we ask all our Book of the Month authors :)

What was your favourite childhood book?

What was the last book you gave to someone as a gift?

What was the last book you read?

Can you describe the room(s) where you wrote The Lido?


Before I sign off I will quickly answer these questions from earlier!

What was your favourite childhood book?

- I was / am a big Harry Potter fan! I not only loved the story, but I loved how living through Harry Potter mania made me feel less of a nerd for loving reading! Reading was suddenly cool, something I hadn't always felt before when I had my head in a book. I always wanted to be Hermione Granger!

What was the last book you gave to someone as a gift?

- Ooh good question! I love giving books as gifts. I can't quite remember which was the most recent but it was probably a medical-related book for my sister who will soon be starting a postgrad degree in medicine!

What was the last book you read?

- The last book I read was Britt-Marie was here by Fredrik Backman, the same author as A Man Called Ove which is one of my all-time favourite books. But I think I loved Britt-Marie nearly as much! I LOVED this book so much - funny but surprisingly moving too. And it even made me want to like football (and I hate football!).

Can you describe the room(s) where you wrote The Lido?

- I wrote The Lido all over the place! In cafés near my office on my lunchbreak, in the cramped room in my then flat and also in a lovely little room in Paris where I went for 6 weeks to get some head-down writing time when I was about half way through. That room was on the edge of Montmartre and had a pretty cat who would climb in through the window railings while I was writing. What more could you want?
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LibbyPage · 07/05/2019 22:08

Thanks so much for having me and for all the interesting questions! Thanks to everyone who has read The Lido and to anyone currently reading it - I hope you enjoy the rest!

If you want to hear more from me I'm on Twitter, Instagram and Facebook as @libbypagewrites

Bye for now! Libby xx

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