Book: Falling in Honey


I came here looking for some kind of happiness. 
It might be the cleverest thing I have ever done. 
One heartbroken winter, I act on my dream of moving to a tiny Greek island. Funny, romantic, full of surprising twists, it's a story of relationships, tzatziki, adventures, swimming, Greek dancing, starfish… a bumpy but beautiful journey into Mediterranean sunshine.

'gorgeous book' - Annabel

'deserves a mention again simply because it's wholly brilliant... Jen fills every page of her personal journey with sunshine, humour and self-reflection. We were sorely tempted to ditch the job and join her' 
- Heat magazine (www.heatworld.com) Summer Reads Special
http://www.heatworld.com/Fun-Stuff/2014/08/GALLERY-heatworlds-Summer-Reads-Special/#image-6

'I've just read Falling in Honey and I simply must visit Tilos. You write how I think about Greece' - Benjamin

'Thanks for that gripping book, I love it... You inspired me to visit Tilos' - Agata, Poland

'I love your book and your blog... Thanks for your inspiration, and for reminding me of Greece's magic' - Debbie 

'just finished reading 'Falling in Honey' - sticky stuff! And I fell in love' - June

'Your descriptions of Tilos in your wonderful book have made me want to go there ever since reading it' - Charlie Carroll, author of No Fixed Abode and The Friendship Highway

'I loved the book... I lived in Skopelos for five years and the Greek way of life never has left me' - Edward

'so enjoyed this book - just wanted to get on a flight and go to Greece...' - Mary Ann

'just picked up Falling in Honey at the New York Public Library and absolutely loved it! Very inspiring and gave me so much to think about' - Liz 

'the perfect summer read' - lipstickandleopardprint.com
http://lipstickandleopardprint.com/2014/05/16/falling-into-honey/

'I really loved it and was sad when I finished it. A real pleasure' - Jane Johnson, author of The Tenth Gift and The Sultan's Wife


Waterstones, Gower Street, London

'This British travel writer fell in love with Greece during her first visit to Corfu at age 11. Things Greek have been her passion ever since... This likable memoir tells of her life on Tilos, a dot on the map midway between Kos and Rhodes.' - Toronto Star

'The miracle of Tilos' - news247.gr
http://news247.gr/eidiseis/weekend-edition/to_thauma_ths_thloy_kai_to_dhmografiko_boom_ths_dekaetias.2870008.html

'Captured with beautiful words that paint a serene picture of life in Greece... If you also want to fall in love with Greece, I highly recommend Falling in Honey' - Jetsetera
http://jetsetera.net/2014/02/22/books-irresistible-beach-reads/

'warm, descriptive and inviting... She writes with a cool resolve that does not alienate the reader, but rather allows for reflection and observation...' - luxuryreading.com
http://luxuryreading.com/fallinginhoney/

http://www.karmaforlifechick.com/book-excerpt-falling-in-honey-a-memoir-of-sun-sea-and-spanakopita-by-jennifer-barclay/

'An Englishwoman in Tilos' - Greek interview on news.gr
http://www.news.gr/gynaika/portraita/article/156040/mia-agglida-sthn-thlo.html

'loved it' - Lizzie Enfield, author of What You Don't Know and Uncoupled

'Loved reading Falling in Honey... You really capture the spirit of the Greek islands' - Victoria

'I loved everything about it - your writing is so descriptive and yet easy to follow, I felt like I was there with you. It is a fantastic book, and I'm really quite sad to have finished it' - Neil

Excerpt on 'We Said Go Travel':
http://www.wesaidgotravel.com/tilos-tiny-greek-island-stole-heart

'Just wanted to say how much I enjoyed "Falling in Honey". Can't wait for the sequel... You have now rekindled in me the passion to travel to Greece again' - George

'enjoyed being transported back to Greece' - Michele

'couldn't put it down' - Jean

'honest, witty, moving and life-affirming' - Diane

'I am a Greek living in the UK. I just finished reading your book and it reminded me of Greece as I remember it when I was a child... this lovely pace of life where there is no rush for anything, people knowing everyone, and just enjoying daily life...' - Alexia

reached #14 in paid Kindle store on Amazon.co.uk

'Jennifer found the meaning of life in Tilos...' - LIFO.gr
http://www.lifo.gr/team/gnomes/47562

'Loved your book... I couldn't put it down once I started reading, then had to read again more slowly...' - Jenny

'Love reading your blog... Read your book Falling in Honey and I am hooked' - Alison

Interview on The Gathering Road with Elaine Masters:
http://www.womensradio.com/2014/04/expat-living-on-a-greek-island-author-jennifer-barclay/

'I've just finished reading Falling in Honey... So sad to have to put it down. I've smiled and laughed and cried all at the same time. A beautiful, moving and inspiring book' - @WelshGrecophile

'We're just in March, but if there's one book I were to recommend as THE book of 2014, it would be Falling in Honey. Trust me, you haven't read a real, good, definite memoir until you've read this one! Prepare to be left in shivers and blanking out for a while after finishing this book because it stays with you, carves a spot into your psyche and refuses to leave you' - Zee Monodee
http://zeemonodee.blogspot.gr/2014/03/blog-tour-guest-post-falling-in-honey.html

'managed to capture the essence of the wonderful slow pace of life on a Greek island' - Gerald

'Great book, very inspiring' - Maggie

'Barclay's beautiful memoir recalls both Elizabeth Gilbert's Eat, Pray, Love and the movie My Big Fat Greek Wedding...' - Booklist
'inspiring story... The peacefulness and wild beauty of Tilos is evoked so well so well in her writing. It is rare to read about a woman falling in love with a place rather than a person, but perhaps this is the truest and most healing kind of love' - Gabriella West
http://gabriellawest.net/2014/03/11/paradise-with-power-cuts-how-to-be-a-digital-nomad/

How to Live and Work as a Digital Nomad: guest post and excerpt:
http://minadecaro.blogspot.gr/2014/03/falling-into-honey-how-tiny-greek.html

Change Might Be Easier Than You Think: Q&A
http://www.pinkgazelle.com/2014/03/12/qa-with-falling-in-honey-author/

'She writes in amazing detail... She also writes of her life and adventures with a raw sort of honesty... Prepare to get hungry with a need to travel... Fans of books like Eat, Pray, Love and Karma Gone Bad ought to check this out' - Bitches n Prose
http://bitchesnprose.blogspot.gr/2014/03/falling-in-honey-blog-tour-guest-post.html

'the book holds a deeper and more universally relevant message: home is where your heart is...' - Maryanne Pope
http://www.pinkgazelle.com/2014/03/05/do-you-love-your-life/

'Falling in Honey will have you wishing you could start anew on a Greek island too. It's a story about picking yourself up from disappointment and carrying on. It's about taking risks, and being true to you.' - Maria Karamitsos, The Greek Star (USA)

'Take the time to savor her splendid story and find the inspiration to give yourself a gift that might change your life' - Huffington Post
http://www.huffingtonpost.com/lisa-niver-rajna/can-a-tiny-greek-island-heal-your-heart_b_4896812.html

'I couldn't go back to the old way of life' - NBC News.com
http://www.nbcnews.com/business/travel/permanent-vacation-digital-nomads-work-road-n43401

Guest column on Dear Reader:
http://dearreader.typepad.com/dear/2014/03/dear-reader-column-03-04-14.html

Seven Questions on author Samantha Verant's site:
http://www.samanthaverant.com/2014/03/seven-questions-with-jennifer-barclay.html

'I just loved your book and Tilos sounds just the type of Greek Island we love, so have booked a holiday' - Helen

'the story of a single woman who decides to be smart about it, and in fact has a very good time' - Gea

'Absolutely loved Falling in Honey. Beautiful descriptions of Greek life and landscape' - Claire

TNT magazine

'[my holiday to Tilos] meant so much more, having read your book. Visited so many places you mentioned' - Ann Marie

'I went into another world while reading it... Your book has inspired me so much' - Clare

'I've just finished Falling in Honey and thoroughly enjoyed it... it is fantastic when someone like you manages to put my thoughts and feelings for Greek life and Greek people into such eloquent words' - Phill

'a wonderful read' - Tony

'I loved your book, it took me right back to Tilos and I could smell the different herbs in the warm breeze...' - Bente

'I live on Kefalonia and found your book in a hotel bookswap. I enjoyed it so much I read it twice in 3 weeks! Your descriptions are wonderful and made me fall in love with Greece again.' - Sally


At London's Heathrow 5 :-)

'I have been reading Falling in Honey, which I couldn't put down...' - Gilly

'thoroughly enjoyed it, loved all your descriptions of a near deserted Tilos...' - Averil

'Reading your book and descriptions of Greece filled me with the kind of happiness I only feel that first moment I walk through the plane door and step foot in Greece... Your story is so inspiring, I can't tell you how encouraging it is that you did it alone...' - Georgie

'A wonderful story' - Chris

'I loved your book. So evocative - I could hear, smell and taste your island' - Francesca

'My husband (not much of a reader until now) and I loved your book!... we were thrilled to see you are living our dream!' - Dianne

'thoroughly enjoyed it... it inspires me to create adventure... great story' - Carly

'the most lovely book and I was so happy reading it' - Zana

'Need some sunshine and honey? LOVE this... perfect antidote to a wintery commute!' - @GirlsThatTravel

Daily Mail 'Femail':
http://www.dailymail.co.uk/femail/article-2513571/At-40-thought-shed-Mr-Perfect-Now-Jennifer-fears-web-lies-destroyed-chance-motherhood.html

'My wife and I both read your book... and it made me laugh. I resisted reading it until this year's first Greek holiday, and it done my soul good to read it' - Stephen

Guest piece on Jane Isaac's blog: 
http://www.janeisaac.co.uk/blog/

'laughed out loud - not many books make me do that' - anonymous

'really loved it... not only the utterly "Tilos" atmosphere... but even more so the story of a single woman who decides to be smart about it, and in fact has a very good time...' - Gea

Lovely coverage by Keep Talking Greece:
http://www.keeptalkinggreece.com/2013/11/13/books-falling-in-honey-by-jennifer-barclay/

'I have just finished listening to Falling in Honey. It was brilliant. Very enjoyable.' - Catherine

'I've just finished reading Falling in Honey - I read it in less than 2 days!! Fabulous book. I really mean that.' - Julie

'your book evoked great memories of backpacking in the islands in the 80s and 90s...' - Michael

'Just wanted to let you know how much I loved Falling in Honey!.. It made me laugh a fair few times. But also had a lump in my throat a few times too... Very much in love with Greece and could relate to so much in the book... Will read the book again without a doubt because once I started it I could not put it down!!' - Sharon

'I have just finished reading Falling in Honey & loved it... I have never before read a book about Greece that made me feel I was there as yours did, so thank you for taking me there' - Karen


'inspiring true story' HEAT magazine, 5 stars

'I hadn't felt the heat of a Greek island rising from the pages since I read Gerald Durrell's My Family and Other Animals back in the '70s' - Antonia

'I have read your book in two days and loved it...'

'I have just started to read your book and have spent much of the evening reading it out loud to my partner...' - Neil

'Helen has just finished your book and thoroughly enjoyed it. She too says there should be a sequel, so we are waiting!' - Jo

'Buy this book - you will not be disappointed but after will feel compelled to get out there and do something!' - Vicki

'This book will make you laugh and cry and laugh again. I didn't want it to end' - Emma Woolf

'Most fantastic and touching book I've read in years' - Isabelle



Woman's Own magazine

'excellent' - Leon

'I have just finished reading your gorgeous book, absolutely loved it! I am completely in love with Greece anyway... your book brought back lovely memories of beautiful sights, smells, landscape and food' - Adelle

'perfect for summer - but not only... this special, remote place gave her the strength to chase her dream... Jealous?'
- Athinorama (Greek)
http://www.athinorama.gr/travel/news/article.aspx?artid=1000345

'captured the soul and spirit of the island with elegance and humour and great emotion. Loved it and sad to finish it' - Ali






My Very Own Greek Odyssey: One Woman's Rat-Race Escape
in The Mail on Sunday YOU magazine
http://www.dailymail.co.uk/home/you/article-2360153/My-Greek-Odyssey-One-womans-rat-race-escape.html


'The descriptions of food make one yearn to get on a boat straight to Tilos! Ultimately this is a book about appreciating the simplest things that life has to offer' - Anna Nicholas

'I saw the article in the paper, so immediately downloaded your book - totally un-put-downable!' - Sarah Hutchinson

'deceptively simply prose... at times as breathtaking as the landscape it describes... beautiful book' - Richard Clark

'We are huge fans... of both your book and of spanakopita!'
Tweet from Waterstones Preston (@WstonesPreston)

'it's honest and forthright and most of all - like the best books the world over - it's a brave book' - Steve Haywood

'so vivid... I loved the journey of Falling in Honey'
The Modern Woman's Survival Guide book club
http://gaynoralder.com/2013/06/24/june-book-club/


Interpretation of the story (not my words but nicely done!) 
in Pick Me Up! magazine

'If ever there were a book to make you want to catch the next plane to a Greek island, then Falling in Honey is it... so evocative that you can almost feel the sunshine on your skin and smell the zest of the oranges. But as well, it inspires as a human interest story... enchanting and life affirming'
Spirit FM
http://www.spiritfm.net/book-club-books.php

'If you can't escape to an idyllic Greek island, Falling in Honey is the next best thing' - John Mole


Feature article in the Daily Express
'remarkable story... moving book'

**** four stars from Wanderlust magazine 
for 'exquisite descriptions... One way ticket to Greece anyone?'

'Captures the gentle pace of island life with great charm. A joy to read' - Harry Bucknall


Spotted in Waterstones Uxbridge!

'Made me want to run away to a Greek island' - Helena Frith Powell

'I've just read this book whilst holidaying on the Greek island of Kos and couldn't put it down! The writer's clever use of words paints a vivid picture... She also gives a searingly honest account of the trials and tribulations of love... I think the key message of this book is that happiness comes from being true to yourself, rather than simply doing the done thing' -
Wendy Green

Review on the TripFiction site: 'take action to make life better'...

'A book to savour. In fact, it's honey in book form... If I didn't already live a few islands away, I'd be wanting to move to Greece!'
- John Manuel

'an inspirational must-read for anyone searching for true happiness' - Susan Joyce

'describes Greece so you can feel the warmth of the sun on your face and sea the fish in the sea... will transport you to the beauty of the villages and perhaps, in the process, give you a little bit of your own 'kefi'. Enjoy' - Sara Alexi


Stack of books in WH Smiths, Victoria Station!

'Writing to the sound of crickets' 
- guest post on EnetEnglish, Greek news site:

Featured on the euGreeka.com newsletter
for all things Greek in the UK:
http://bit.ly/ZNmvHc

My guest post on Mama J Hearts blog: 
'I'd always had a dream of being on a Greek island...'
http://bit.ly/YDTFej

I stumbled across your book in my small local library in Waiuku, New Zealand. What a fabulous and inspiring read, and testament to where a positive outlook and a whole lot of courage can lead you. Your stories of Tilos took me back to a summer spent in the Greek islands, it's now top of my list when I hopefully get back over there one day. - reader

Wonderful review on the LadyHiker blog from Cyprus 
- 'Happiness is easy sometimes'!

    
Feature in Thomas Cook Travel magazine 
on the most romantic places in the Greek islands:


'It was so refreshing to see someone take the leap and leave England to work on a perfect little island... your experiences have made me realise that it really is possible! Also your descriptions of Tilos are so beautiful and it is now on our travel wish-list...'
- Daisy

The first little mention in The Bookseller magazine: 'Shirley Valentine, My Big Fat Greek Wedding, Eat Pray Love and Mamma Mia all rolled into one, says Summersdale'!


An interview on the Leaving Cairo/Adventure Greece blog:

'beautifully yet unpretentiously written... a good deal of genuine profundity and insight... adept at writing about people and relationships' - Jacob


Excerpt from 
Falling in Honey: Life and Love on a Greek Island:

Manolis finds a starfish: a fat red one, barely moving, though when I hold it in my hand it puts its feelers out ever so gently. I hold it carefully for a while and then drop it and watch it float slowly down to the sea bed. Ten minutes or so later, I swim back to where I dropped it and see that it fell upside down and is still ever so slowly turning itself back the right way up. I wonder if that’s what’s happening to me.


I am looking for a Greek island.
If I was going on my own, maybe I’d just take a backpack and trust to serendipity. I’ve fallen in love with so many islands over the years just by hopping on the next ferry: islands that smelled of herbs and pine trees, whose villages had whitewashed alleys overhung with magenta bougainvillaea, stalked by cats and chickens. Islands where pigs roamed on the wild beaches and cows wandered through the ruins of ancient hilltop castles; where people gathered in the village square at least once a day to gossip and play backgammon; where the hills were filled with olive trees and thyme and dropped away to a deep sparkling blue.
Once, island-hopping with another traveller, we’d arrived on the night of a big local festival. All the rooms were booked up, but sometimes you could sleep on someone’s rooftop. It had been too late to ask permission, and I was slightly nervous the next morning when I heard a window opening by our heads, expecting a sharp telling off. Instead, we got an amused ‘Kalimera!’ or good morning, and a coffee and biscuits. 
Later, we found a room to rent at the back of someone’s house; our landlady Eleni gave us plates heaped with ripe fresh fruit from her garden every day. In the mornings I had a coffee and home-made biscuits on the balcony with her, and one day we went to help the family with the grape harvest. We followed stony tracks all over the island, accompanied by the sound of birds and crickets, but mostly to the empty beach where Eleni’s mother used to go when she was courting. As the sun was going down, we sometimes stopped at a farm where a jolly man would fill up our water bottle with slightly fizzy home-made wine that we sipped on the way back to the pretty port, and we sat on the quayside watching brightly painted fishing boats bobbing in deep blue water, their nets laid out to dry.
The spontaneous hospitality, the colour, the traditional, rural, island life, the shimmering blue sea, the sheer, sunny beauty of it all – that’s what I’m looking for again.





22 comments:

  1. I bought the book on the weekend and finished it already! Highly recommend this - brought back happy memories of living in Crete. Gread read!

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  2. Have just finished Falling in Honey. With every page I was thinking of myself living that dream. A wonderful story. I am now trying to find the "ending" somewhere on your Blog! Can you prompt me :-) I want to know how it all ended.

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  3. I read a lot of books, all travel memoirs. I couldn't put this book down and felt I was on Tilos enjoying ever day. My next trip is to Greece and Tilos is now on the itinerary. Thank you for sharing your story and giving me inspiration.

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    1. That's wonderful to hear, Kathie - thank you! My pleasure. Enjoy planning your trip!

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  4. Great book very inspiring. My husband and I are retiring early and moving to Greece this year and in my odd moments of fears of any aspect of the move I read a chapter of your lovely book and feel re-inspired and motivated. Thank you for your descriptive text that brings the positive aspects of such a colourful, friendly country to the front of my mind and reminds me why we are choosing to go on this wonderful adventure. Thank you.

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    1. Thank you! Great to hear you're embarking on a wonderful adventure. I've never looked back, and I think you've got lots to look forward to. Good luck, and thank you again for taking the time to write such a gratifying message.

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  5. hi...where can i find your book?i am from greece and i live in athens.. :) cheers...

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    1. Hi Anna! I'm not sure if you can order the book through one of the big bookshops in Athens that have English-language sections, but you can order it online e.g. Amazon, Book Depository. And we have copies in Tilos! If you have trouble getting a copy, let me know and I'll find a way. Thanks for your interest.

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  6. Dear Jen, I just finished your book and like all the others I found it immensely vivid and almost like I have been on a short trip to Tilos, I am so relaxed :D I especially enjoyed all your food descriptions! Reading left me hungry all the time. I even started a herb garden with Greek herbs. Hope you are still as happy over there, Greetings from Germany!

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    1. Thank you so much! Great to hear it. Tilos still makes me very happy... Warm wishes to you... J

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  7. Just finishing reading your book,couldnt put it down.loved every page of it.TIlos sounds an amazing place to be ,It almost felt like I was there from the way you described it,
    Love greece and her islands and most of all her warm welcoming people

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    1. Thank you so much, Sally - what a lovely message! It's very kind of you to take the trouble to write. Much appreciated.

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  11. LOVE LOVE LOVE your book and your bravery ... what an inspiring woman. Makes me want to pack up from Australia and move to my parents homeland with my boyfriend..
    Yasso Koukla

    Kindest Regards and HUGS
    Dottie

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  12. I forgot to ask .... Who did you finally fall in honey with ha ha ... I really thought you would have ended up with Manolis ... are you going to write another book with your current life in Greece. If I ever visit again would love to have an ouzo or 2
    Kindest regards
    Dottie

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    1. Yasou Dottie - thank you so much for your lovely words and hugs! Would love to answer your questions, but maybe not here, maybe over that ouzo or two... And I certainly AM writing another book about what happened next! x

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    2. FABULOUS ... I cannot wait. Stay happy and FABULOUS and keep inspiring.

      Kindest Regards and More Greek hugs xxxxx
      Dottie (real name Theodora) !

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  13. Hi Jennifer, I just wanted to say how much I enjoyed your book. I had just returned from `my own Tilos` which is a place in Turkey where we have an apartment (but unfortunately dont live there yet!) and was then off sick with shingles. I was transported to your Island and very sad to finish the book- so glad for this blog but couldnt find it on Facebook any plans to include it there too?

    Best Wishes Pam Hoult

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    1. Hi Pam,
      Thanks so much! I'm glad you enjoyed the book and that it transported you to a place like your own dream home in Turkey. I usually post the blog on my Facebook page - you can find me there at Jen Barclay (jen.barclay.33). Hope to see you there!
      Jx

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