My Place: author Jane Bwye and I Lift Up My Eyes

Today, I extend a warm welcome to author Jane Bwye to My Place. Jane's first novel, Breath of Africa, a romantic drama set in Kenya, was nominated for the People's Book Prize and has garnered wonderful reviews. Her deep knowledge of the country added depth and colour to the story.

But today, she's telling us about her novella, I Lift Up My Eyes, and how she came to writing such a compelling, realistic story – a completely different setting to the vibrant Breath of Africa. More internal.

Find out from Jane!


“Take four men and one loving but unloved woman. Light the blue touch paper and stand – as close as it suits you, depending on whether you prefer a dash of passion or the quiet life…”
(~Ron Askew: Amazon review)

I suppose my life has been anything but quiet. I have survived tragedy, widowhood, and the trauma of leaving my home country. And I’ve been blessed with a large family and two loving husbands.

When I was in my thirties a friend had a serious accident. He was traumatised and his wife could not cope. They parted. Both have since recovered and remarried, and I know of many incidents where sickness has been the cause of broken relationships. Why does this happen – how can people avoid it? Nowadays we have access to counselling, but the pain is still there, and the result often seems inevitable. I have often felt compelled to explore this problem.

After my first novel was published (award-nominated Breath of Africa), I needed a break from Africa, yet I wanted to keep writing. So I decided to do what I do best, and write a story.

I have enjoyed disguising myself as Ann, thinking thoughts through her, and enjoying with her the delights of little things. Ann has helped me to appreciate the joys of England, to hold onto the good things and accept every blessing which comes my way.

I gave Ann three men: a husband Robert; a reprobate Duncan; and a son John, in the evening of her days. And then there is the fourth male in the mix – God.

Ann finds fulfilment in her work, enjoys her singing, loves to walk across the hills, and she travels to Israel. But Robert is not the man she married, and she is agonisingly attracted to Duncan…

I made a simple discovery, universal in its truth.

People have found this a compelling read, and it has made them think. I hope you will also enjoy the many lighter bits, and come away with some morsels of wisdom.


I LIFT UP MY EYES is a novella of 30,000 words, ideal for a short holiday read. It can be downloaded from Amazon UK, Amazon US, and Smashwords.

About Jane:

Jane Bwye lived in Kenya for over half a century, where she went to school, and brought up her large family.

Her first novel, Breath of Africa, took forty years to gestate, and draws on her experiences growing up in the country she still calls her home.

The novella, I Lift Up My Eyes, is utterly different, as she needed a break from Africa but wanted to keep on writing.

A world traveller, she buys a bird book in every country she visits. Now living in the UK, she indulges her love for choral singing, horses, tennis, bridge, and walking. 

Find Jane at:


  1. Thank you for having me, Cathie!

  2. Good review. Thanks to Jane and Cathie. :)

  3. Never registered about the bird books. Interesting - my great aunt and her sister, my paternal grandmother, used to do the same thing. They used to list the birds they saw, when and where, in the back.

    1. Very interesting, Roland. Thanks for stopping by. :-)

  4. Thought I'd replied to you yesterday, Roland - must have got lost in the ether! I also keep lists, and they're still tucked away in the bird books I bought. I resolved to create a database when I got back from my round-the-world trip, but somehow have never got round to it. Funny how life gets in the way...

  5. thanks for a lovely good to learn more about you..after invading your blog!

  6. Thanks for stopping by, Carol


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