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The Beginner’s Guide To Loneliness by SJV
2020/10/26  |  By:   |  Features  |  

The Beginner’s Guide to Loneliness by Laura Bambrey

The Beginners Guide To Loneliness - Out Now SquareWhen we first read Laura Bambrey’s fantastic debut novel, The Beginner’s Guide to Loneliness, which she sent to us as part of our #DigitalOriginals #OneDay2019 submission day, we literally jumped for joy. Laura’s is a life-affirming, warm-hearted and utterly hilarious read about learning to look after yourself and opening up to new opportunities. It’s a novel about friendship, wellbeing, and self-discovery, topped off with a hint of romance! We’ve all felt lonely at one point or another, and that’s okay – this is a novel that celebrates our flaws and teaches us to love who we are. It will not disappoint!

The perfect feel-good read from an exciting new voice in women’s fiction, for fans of Heidi Swain, Cathy Bramley and Jenny Colgan.


Tori Williamson is alone. After a tragic event left her isolated from her loved ones, she’s been struggling to find her way back to, well – herself. That’s why she set up her blog, The Beginner’s Guide to Loneliness, as a way of – anonymously – connecting with the outside world and reaching others who just need a little help sometimes.

When she’s offered a free spot on a wellbeing retreat in exchange for a review on her blog, Tori is anxious about opening herself up to new surroundings. But after her three closest friends – who she talks to online but has never actually met – convince her it’ll do her some good, she reluctantly agrees and heads off for three weeks in the wild (well, a farm in Wales).

From the moment she arrives, Tori is sceptical and quickly finds herself drawn to fellow sceptic Than, the retreat’s dark and mysterious latecomer. But as the beauty of The Farm slowly comes to light she realizes that opening herself up might not be the worst thing. And sharing a yurt with fellow retreater Bay definitely isn’t.  Will the retreat be able to fix Tori? Or will she finally learn that being lonely doesn’t mean she’s broken . . .

Welcome to The Beginner’s Guide to Loneliness! Where you can learn to move mountains by picking up the smallest of stones…


’Sweet, funny, engaging – and underneath the sparkle really rather wise. The perfect tonic for our times.’ VERONICA HENRY, Sunday Times bestselling author of A Wedding at the Beach Hut

‘A  total hug in book form. Warm-hearted, honest and touching, it’s a beautiful story of love and friendship. I loved it!’ MIRANDA DICKINSON, Sunday Times bestselling author of The Day We Meet Again

‘I LOVED it!’ HEIDI SWAIN, Sunday Times bestselling author of The Secret Seaside Escape

‘What a read – rollicking fun and emotionally satisfying!’ MICHELE GORMAN, Sunday Times bestselling author of The Curvy Girls Club

‘This book will leave you with a big smile’ MANDY BAGGOT, author of My Greek Island Summer

‘An absolute delight!’ JUDY ASTLEY, author of It Must Have Been the Mistletoe

Genuinely moving, beautifully told and really funny!’ CHRISTINA PISHIRIS, author of Love Songs for Sceptics

‘Funny, warm and brilliantly uplifting’ CLAIRE FROST, author of Living My Best Life

‘Getting drawn into the pages of The Beginners Guide to Loneliness is like being drawn into a big soothing hug, right when you need it. Full of warmth, depth and unexpected turns, plus a cast of characters I wish I knew in real life, Laura Bambrey has written a beautiful debut.’ LUCY DICKENS, author of The Broken Hearts Honeymoon

‘I absolutely devoured this wonderful story of friendship, romance and learning to love yourself. It was touching, funny and an utterly fabulous read’ HOLLY MARTIN, author of Sunrise Over Sapphire Bay

‘Although it’s a love story, it’s even more a tale of friendship – not just being a friend, but accepting friendship from others, which can be just as difficult . . . I recommend it most highly as a beautifully written guide as to how we should live our lives’ T.A. WILLIAMS, author of Dreaming of Italy

‘This book was beautiful, funny and uplifting. Everything for me that a book should be. A fabulous debut novel.’ KIM NASH, author of Sunshine and Second Chances

‘A beautiful, uplifting and heart-warming debut novel’ ANNETTE HANNAH, author of Wedding Bells At The Signal Box Cafe


Anne says : ‘I found this book quite stunning – it attempts a lot, and fails at nothing. The writing is so very confident, the ideas behind the story are ambitious but perfectly delivered, and the whole book is unlike anything I’ve read before: it raises serious questions and confronts real issues, but also manages to be a thoroughly heartwarming and entertaining read.’  Read her full review here.

Hayley says : ‘Laura has created a story, a world that’s not only full of humour but full of heart.’  Read her full review here.

Karen hosted a Q&A with Laura here.

Kelly says : ‘There is so much warmth and hope in this book that makes it such a feel-good and heart-warming story.’  Read her full review here.

Rea says : ‘I would definitely recommend this novel if you are looking for a motivational, life affirming fictional read with the workings of friendships and the blossoming of romance to keep you gripped until the very end.’  Read her full review here.

Laura says : ‘I absolutely adored this novel from start to finish and it is a complete treat.’  Read her full review here.

TBGTL Blog Tour

Julie hosted an extract on her blog – read it here.

‘This book had some powerful themes of grief, guilt and betrayal. Laura does an excellent job of navigating these sensitive subjects and making you as the reader feel involved in the journey the characters take. This book would make an excellent book club choice with lots of discussion points and areas to think about’ Emma, read her full review here.

The Beginner’s Guide to Loneliness is a beacon of hope for a better tomorrow. It touched my heart and I resonated with so much that it had to offer’ Stacy, read her full review here.

‘Laura Bambrey’s awesome debut novel should come on prescription as it’s not only perfect escapism for our troubled times but it’s guaranteed to leave a smile on your face. Beautifully written, it’s uplifting, heartwarming and enlightening. Perfectly plotted, it’s painted like a masterpiece with just the right amount of shade so it’s not all sweetness and light’ Michelle, read her full review here.

‘A very emotional and entrancing read which caught me off guard with how poignant it is’ Joanna, read her full review here.

‘An absolute belter of a book. I loved it unreservedly. Laura has crafted a witty, moving and entertaining read that completely captivated me. What I found so special about The Beginner’s Guide to Loneliness was the balance between light hearted comedy and sensitive emotional depth because it made the book all the more affecting’ Linda, read her full review here.

‘This book is definitely an unexpected gem. I loved reading this and I highly recommend it’ Catriona, read her full review here.

‘A brilliant debut from Laura Bambrey; I enjoyed The Beginners Guide to Loneliness from start to finish. It’s emotional, fun-filled, dramatic and covers some very sensitive topics that will resonate with many readers’ Jenn, read her full review here.

‘Tori is a sweetheart and I wanted to reach through the pages and give her a hug. And there’s a delightfully slobbery dog too! The book is a tonic, so enjoy’ Madeleine, read her full review here.

‘This was a fun yet thought provoking read with a wonderful twist! It ticked all the boxes for me’ Kate, read her full review here.

‘The story is full of ups and downs, Laura’s style of writing is very gripping and she has created a wonderful atmosphere and storyline. She captured some beautiful moments and managed to include topics like grief and fear. It’s a warm-hearted and moving book with some authentic characters, lovely scenes and brilliant writing’ Simona, read her full review here.

‘I loved this book and I will cherish it for a very long time’ Hannah, read her full review here.

‘This is a stunningly beautiful debut novel, which I took my time over as I wanted to savour every chapter and stay with the incredible characters for as long as possible’ Stacey, read her full review here.

‘A truly fantastic read’ Jessica, read her full review here.

‘Joyful, uplifting and moving I absolutely loved this book! It deals with anxiety and panic in a really sensitive way and it also has some surprises in store for the reader. A perfect summery escape to the farm!’ Karen, read her full review here.

‘Laura Bambrey has created a wonderful and very readable uplifting story. At the beginning of each chapter is a quote from Tori’s online blog and I found myself looking forward to these. I fell in love with the characters and didn’t want to say farewell’ Adele, read her full review here.

This is top of my BOTY list for Best Debut of 2021! I’ve read it twice and will no doubt read it again!’ Trish, read her full review here.

‘Thought provoking, funny, emotional and highlights the inner working of friendship and how to deal with trouble when it comes into our life path’ Emma, read her full review here.

‘This is an absolutely incredible book that will take you on a rollercoaster of emotions through a farmland retreat, all the way to a huge and unexpected twist that I honestly did not see coming…’ Louise, read her full review here.

‘This story spoke so boldly to me and I resonated with the main character more than I had believed I would when going in to this book’ Shelby, read her full review here.

Laura Bambrey Author Pic“The Beginner’s Guide to Loneliness is a love letter to anyone who has ever struggled with loneliness or anxiety. My heroine, Tori, has been pottering around my head for almost a decade, but she took quite a long time to tell me the details of her story. It was early 2019 when I finally sat down to write what was to become The Beginner’s Guide To Loneliness. Tori slowly started to open up – though there were plenty of surprises from the supporting characters along the way!  I was only half way through when I entered the Digital Originals #OneDay open submission in July 2019, and when Sara-Jade and Bec requested to see the rest of the manuscript, I had to beg an extra 6 weeks to complete the draft. After a life-changing visit to the S&S offices, I embarked on a round of edits in the hands of the amazing team at Books and the City. I’m so excited to be working with them - Tori couldn’t have found a better home.”

The Beginner's Guide to Loneliness - Sainsbury's