– ‘The Magic of Wor(l)ds’ blog is a hobby, reviews and other bookish stuff on this site are done for free. –
Today I’m on the ‘The Hen Party’ blogtour, organized by Random Things Tours.
To promote this book I have an excerpt, but before I let you read it first some ‘basic’ information.
About the Author :
Maria Frankland’s life began at 40 when she escaped an unhappy marriage and began making a living from her own writing and becoming a teacher of creative writing.
The rich tapestry of life with all its turbulent times has enabled her to pour experience, angst and lessons learned into the writing of her novels and poetry.
She recognises that the darkest places can exist within family relationships and this is reflected in the domestic thrillers she writes.
She is a ‘born ‘n’ bred’ Yorkshirewoman, a mother of two and has recently found her own ‘happy ever after’ after marrying again.
Still in her forties, she is now going to dedicate the rest of her working life to writing books and inspiring other writers to also achieve their dreams too!
• Publisher : Autonomy Press (8 May 2021)
• Language : English
• Paperback : 266 pages
• ISBN-10 : 191622489X
• ISBN-13 : 978-1916224896
Have you ever been to a party… and deeply regretted it?
Caitlyn and her nine hens arrive in Dublin for a never-to-be-forgotten weekend.
As the drink flows and the laughter echoes, her attendees put aside their buried resentments and secret dark agendas.
But one of these disturbing agendas will be executed – no matter what.
Ten is about to become nine. Who will be the one?
It takes a moment for my eyes to grow accustomed to the darkness. My heart rate quickens and I hear the hiss of my breath in my ears. As I tiptoe to her side, she doesn’t stir.
I hold the pillow, my hands gripping either edge as I prepare to lower it.
She barely flinches to start with. I wonder if she will just drift into an eternal sleep without waking first.
Her body becomes rigid, but then, some fight kicks in, her arms and legs flail in all directions. Taken aback, I press down. Hard. I hear her gasps beneath the pillow. She doesn’t thrash for long before going limp. Then. Silence.
I hardly dare move the pillow for a moment. When I do, I know there’s no going back.
We seem to make our presence felt in Bella Mia, filling the foyer with our eight suitcases and coats, before taking over a long table in the centre of the restaurant.
“Special occasion?” asks the waitress.
“She’s getting married in three weeks.” I point at Caitlyn. “So, we’ll start with some bubbly please.” I’m determined that she’ll have a good time this weekend. Caitlyn really should look happier. She’s in remission, getting married, and here with us, for the weekend.
“Cheers ladies.” Karen holds her glass aloft.
“Speeeeeech.” Michaela looks at Caitlyn. “Come on future sister-in-law. You’ve dragged us all the way to Dublin.”
It’s nice to hear her being friendly for a change.
“I don’t do speeches,” Caitlyn says.
“Ah come on.” I join in now. Between us all, we must be able to bring her out of herself.
“You’ve all got a glass of fizz in your hand – what more do you want?”
“A speech from the bride-to-be.” It’s the first time Adele has joined in with anything. Her voice is so quiet that I think only I heard her.
“Speeeeech!” Michaela taps the side of her glass with a spoon.
“Alright, alright.” Caitlyn stands. “Anyway, yes, I’d just like to say, thank you all for coming…”
“Booooring.” Lucy sips her prosecco, smearing the glass with red lipstick. She’s got fully-laden Pandora bracelets on each wrist and seriously big hair. I can’t believe she’s only seventeen.
“Don’t forget Lucy – I’m going to be your wicked stepmother before long.” Caitlyn’s face bears an expression I can’t quite put my finger on. So does Lucy’s. It seems to say yeah, right.
Canned laughter rises amongst us. Caitlyn places her hands on her hips and appears to be waiting for a pause. The whole restaurant falls quiet. “Oh gosh, everyone’s listening.” She colours up. She’s been looking pale throughout the journey, so the colour makes her look better. “Anyway, as I was saying… I’ve got all the ladies here this weekend who have made the most impact on my life.”
There’s an edge to her words which appears to be lost on the others.
“To those of you who’ve supported me during my illness – thank you. I know I haven’t been easy.”
Annette coughs, and Caitlyn glares at her.
“But you’re all here this weekend to celebrate with me, and I’m glad you’ve all come along. We’ll have a weekend never to be forgotten.” She raises her glass. “I’d like to propose a toast… to my hens.”
As readers always love a free gift, anyone who answers a question (at the back of the book) and follows the link before 20th August 2021 will be entered into a prize draw to win a Yorkshire Reader’s goodie bag, pictured below.
The Magic of Wor(l)ds