There’s a lot to get through for this collection of twelve short stories; so buckle up and get ready for a rough ride! There are twists and turns throughout; just when you think you know the ending there’s a final twist!
The stories in ‘A Sting in the Tale’ deal with love, death, revenge and mystery. You can find a ghost story or two and for good measure several of the stories are laced with a touch of comedy. So there’s something for everybody.
In Voice is a love story about an elderly bookshop owner with an unusual talent and his summer of love with a young schoolteacher.
Daylight Robbery tells the story of an audacious jewel thief.
Affair of the Heart is set in Bath; will she leave her one true love to run away with a married man?
Traveller’s Rest is a ghost story; or is it? You decide.
What’s in a Name? This is what used to be called a ‘shaggy dog’ story; my apologies to the Canine Defence League if that’s not appropriate. There are no dogs in the story.
Dobson’s Choice is based in my home town and is another love story; as in Hobson’s Choice, young Laura Dobson is left with no choice at all.
A Merciful Release tells of Christine Amor’s passion for boy bands; not unusual for a young girl, but when the lady concerned is middle aged, her actions are a little extreme.
A Crack Shot will give some young wives ideas how about how to deal with a cheating husband, but could they dream up such an ingenious method of creating a ‘win win situation’?
Come To Rest is a story of revenge set in Weston Super Mare. Jane Collingwood is a genteel spinster with a romantic past.
Bang to Rights sees Dave Abbott have to deal with a tearful woman in what proves to be an explosive day with twists and red herrings in his job as concierge at a luxurious office block.
The Class of ’64 is loosely located in Trowbridge, where I myself went to school. There the similarity ends. In this story a group of bullies get their comeuppance.
The Last Bus is a ghost story set just four miles from my home town. This bus journey was one I took with my parents & my brother on numerous occasions, but we never knowingly had the same experience as my narrator.
All of the stories are based in the UK. This is simply because that’s where I live and therefore they are the places I know best. Some locations are really close to home like ‘The Class of ‘64’, ‘Dobson’s Choice’ and ‘The Last Bus’, while ‘Traveller’s Rest’ is based on a real incident from my days in the band.
We were travelling back from a gig somewhere south of London and heading towards Andover, Devizes and a warm bed. Through a thick stand of pine trees Nick our saxophone player spotted a dim light. We stopped and reversed back to thread our way via a cinder track through the trees into a clearing. It was a truck stop that had seen better days and we were the only vehicle in the truck park. The proprietor looked after the eight of us with a cooked breakfast, hot drinks and a selection of corny jokes and riddles that amused us during our stay. We left him as the sun was coming up with a cheery wave. Although we travelled that way a dozen times over the next few years, we never found that truck stop again. No matter how we strained our eyes at the passing rows of trees we never saw a dim light, no cinder track and we certainly never sensed any smell of sausage, bacon and egg wafting through the early morning. Spooky!
Why did I write this book? Why a collection of short stories, rather than another novel? As you will have read elsewhere, I stumbled into writing fiction and after I’d completed ‘The Final Straw’ I was at a loose end. It was up for grabs on Amazon and doing the rounds on a virtual book tour for the summer (2013); the reviews were scheduled for September/October perhaps and I searched for some local reviewers to get things moving. I discovered a writers group in my home town and I thought I’d get some help there. As part of my induction process and in an attempt to ingratiate myself with this motley crew I offered a couple of poems and a short story or two for their opinions. My offerings went down well, but there was no sign of a book review anytime soon. I tried my hand at a couple more short stories & when ‘The Final Straw’ was picking up my first award, I had about seven or eight completed. I thought that twelve was a good number and cracked on in the week or two before we were off on holiday in late September. The holiday was for rest & recuperation for both of us but my wife wanted me to be ready to start the sequel to ‘The Final Straw’ as soon as we returned home.
I published ‘A Sting In The Tale’ in October and started writing ‘Unfinished Business’. Four months later, I thought I’d better think about promoting BOTH books. That’s my downfall; I love writing but can’t get to grips with the marketing side of things.
Take a look at these shorts with a twist why don’t you? There’s a lot of variety there for very little money!
A Sting In The Tale on Amazon
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