Soaring Again

‘Flying Duo’ by Zoe May

Can true love go the distance?

London lawyer Rachel Watson has wound up in an Indian ashram with hippy heartthrob lover, Seb.

A high-achiever, Rachel has always lived life according to her Life List, ticking off goals along the way. But now that she’s in India, Rachel is going with the flow, or at least trying to…

Rachel’s visa is running out and it’s time to decide whether her relationship with Seb is a holiday romance or built to last.

The pair embark on a trip to Nepal for an Everest base camp trek, but will their relationship survive this gruelling expedition or is it time to part ways?

Flying Duo is the second romantic comedy in the ‘Flying’ series, following on from bestseller, Flying Solo, which was described by the Daily Express newspaper as ‘a must read that will appeal to fans of Sophie Kinsella, Beth O’Leary and Mhari McFarlane’ ★★★★★

As we enter what feels like week one million of lockdown, I am becoming more and more convinced that light romantic fiction is the escape route we all need to take advantage of.

And few offer as enticing a route map as the writing of Zoe May. Flying Duo is the second in the ‘Flying’ series and I’m yet to read the first. However, I can tell you that this won’t matter.

May offers vivid descriptions of picturesque locations, realistic travails of love and it’s many barriers  as well as the sort of happy ending that has you clutching the book to yourself and going, “ah.”

Flying Duo is a warm bath for the brain and a charming addition to my lockdown escapism shelf of books.

Purchase Links

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Author Zoe May with the ridiculously cute Bella

Author Bio –

Zoe May is an author of romantic comedies. Zoe has dreamt of being a novelist since she was a teenager. She worked in journalism and copywriting in London before writing her debut novel, ‘Perfect Match’. Having experienced the London dating scene first hand, Zoe couldn’t resist writing a novel about dating since it seems to supply endless amounts of weird and wonderful material!

‘Perfect Match’ was one of Apple’s top-selling books of 2018. It was also shortlisted for the Romantic Novelists’ Association’s Joan Hessayon Award, with judges describing it as ‘a laugh out loud look at love and self-discovery – fresh and very funny’.

As well as writing, Zoe enjoys walking her dog, painting and, of course, reading! She adores animals and if she’s not taking a photo of a vegan meal, she’s probably tweeting about the dairy industry. She is half Greek and half Irish and can make a mean baklava. Zoe has a thing for horror films, India, swimming, hip hop and Radiohead. She has an encyclopaedic knowledge of handbags having spent several years working in fashion copywriting and could probably win Mastermind if this was her specialist subject!

Social Media Links –

‘Gironimo’ by Tim Moore


I read Tim Moore’s book, ‘French Revolutions’ when it came out 10 years ago and liked it. In the book, Moore details his attempts to cycle the route of the Tour de France on his own in his ill-prepared fashion, with a charmingly wry wit.

I liked it, I think, because I like travel books and I like travel, and manage to do so as regularly as I can, always in a wry and ill-prepared fashion and without any of the insouciance and sang froid that I would like to imagine that I possess. So, I liked his work. But I didn’t remember it as especially memorable and I’d lost track of his work subsequently.

I picked up this book for a friend’s birthday gift. A thought process no more complex than; ‘he likes cycling and we both love Italy. What could go wrong?’

This time, Tim Moore cycles the route of a race, on his own, recording his observations about his lack of preparation in a charmingly wry fashion. Seeing a pattern here?

In this case, he retraces the route of the 1914 Giro d’Italia, known as one of the most difficult races in cycling history. A nice addition is that this time he decides to undertake this madcap scheme on a reconditioned original – or as original as can be sourced – century old bicycle and dons woollen riding kit to boot.

And, here’s the thing: I loved it. It is one of the most genuinely laugh out loud books I’ve read, ever. I was not prepared for the sheer range of laughs the writing provoked, ranging from childish sniggers as he brakes and catapults his genitals onto the exposed rusted bolt where the front of his saddle should be, to the screamingly funny story of the cyclist who had enough in the original race and proceeded to savagely beat an unfortunately officious customs official who got in the way.

Moore manages to convey all of this with grace and no little use of simile. “‘To ride is to work,’ I said to my knees. ‘Each turn of the pedals is like the click of the freelance writer’s mouse’ or “‘It was as if my intimate parts now belonged to someone else: someone who was dead, and had died a virgin.’”

There are lags in the book, for sure. Any travel book will, at some stage, encounter the problem that, after a while, the writer must move and conveying regular movement – unless something extreme is happening – can be quite dull.

Moore’s solution when he doesn’t have a homemade wine bottle cork brake block repair anecdote to convey is two-fold. He either simply dips into the official history of the original tour and finds another tale of riders falling asleep in barns from hypothermia or drinking red wine from their panniers or keeps track of his own progress along the course against the times and distances of the original riders.

This book is a triumph of the genre and fully deserved its place on the Radio 4 Book of the Week list. It is so good I’m off to re-read ‘French Revolutions’ to check that I didn’t miss something a decade ago.

Moore is an approachable guide and its light, amusing, tone is the perfect complement to the guilt that comes from reading about someone else’s adventures while you’re slobbing at home.

I’m glad there are men out there prepared to do things to push themselves physically to the limits. I’m glad it’s not me that has to and I’m especially glad when they have Tim Moore’s ability to document these feats of ill-prepared carnage in charmingly wry observations.

Gironimo! in Five Words: Laughing to the Finish Line

You can follow the author on Twitter @MrTimMoore and the publishers, Yellow Jersey Press @YellowJersey_ed