A true Kiwi native with a deep love for contemporary storytelling, Anya Forest brings to life the vibrancy and wonder of the communities that have shaped and changed her. Having lived and travelled across New Zealand (including Stewart Island!), Anya has a unique way of capturing the lives of small-town rural Mainlanders. A lover of the outdoors, animals, and New Zealand life, Anya incorporates the innate romance of nature and the backdrops of her life into all of her books.
She has published two series so far (Across the Strait; Maniototo Skies) that capture the sights, wildlife, songs, and scenery of New Zealand. She is currently working on a new series (On the Coast) that will draw inspiration from her West Coast heritage. When she’s not writing or reading a good romance herself, Anya is exploring the scenes of her stories in the great outdoors with her beloved retriever, Crockett.
At this time Anya is available for school talks, book clubs, or any other book-related events or programmes. For availability and information, please contact her for bookings at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Excerpt from “A Southern Star”
Christie could see they were in the country; she was unable to stop looking at the scenery, the river that she knew twisted through the gorge, flashes of it visible every now and then. Blake turned into a tree lined driveway winding up the hillside. Christie frowned. “Is your new home close by?” she asked, remembering the location Scott had mentioned. Blake nodded, explaining he lived in an old cottage made of the local schist stone, that he was having his new home built on the same property.
Christie fell silent as the car rounded the curve of the driveway, seeing a picture perfect stone cottage and the tasteful stone and wooden house under construction to the side.
“You’ve based the design on the cottage,” Christie said before she could stop herself, appreciating the raked lines, the picture windows, the stone features.
Blake watched her silently, remembering her refusal to help. “Come into the cottage and rest,” he said tersely.
Christie looked at him quickly, hurt by his words, his tone. “Of course,” she said, acknowledging to herself Blake did not want to show her around, realising she was too tired in any case and in no state to look around a building site. Christie climbed out of the car, suddenly overcome by weariness, walking towards the cottage. She heard the car boot close, realised Blake was carrying her bag. She stopped, suddenly uncertain. Blake walked past her, unlocking the door, disappearing inside. Slowly Christie followed him inside, looking around in amazement at the cosy lounge and kitchen, the polished wooden floors covered with rugs, the open fireplace. She saw a small hallway, heard Blake moving around in one of the rooms. Not knowing what to do Christie sank into the sofa, her mind a tumult of emotion, finding the interior of the cottage cool, restful, after the unbearable heat of the day.
She looked around as Blake walked into the lounge. He seemed ill at ease, distant. “Do you want some lunch…to rest?” he asked. “Or TV, a magazine…” His voice trailed off as he did not look directly at her.
“If I could just rest in your spare room,” Christie said, unable to disguise the slight tremor in her voice. She couldn’t read his expression as he finally looked at her.