Thar she blows!


A nautical image for a totally landlocked novel? But I’ve just launched my new book on the waves of the ether, so there is some justification.

My novel is now up on Amazon (LINK: in both ebook and printed form, and can even be downloaded for free on 9th and 10th October. I’m hoping that readers who go for the free download will be kind enough to write a review on Amazon.

The book is about Sophie and John, a couple from England who decide to retire to France in the early 2000s in order to benefit from the favourable sterling-euro exchange rate and enjoy the good things of life that France has to offer.

Helped by their French estate agent, Jean-Christophe, they eventually find the house of their dreams and embark on the adventure that is supposed to bring them tranquillity and security, far away from their perception of contemporary Britain, with its influx of ‘foreigners’ from the former British Empire and the current European Union. All is not as it seems, however, and dreams have a way of turning into nightmares.

In a nearby village Julie Smithers is also embarking on a new life, having left England and an unhappy romance behind in order to settle down to writing a novel of her own. She is alarmed to find that the refurbished house she has bought appears to have faulty plumbing, and when Steve, an expat British handyman appears, they soon embark on a bumpy romance.

The renovated barn next door to Sophie and John houses an orphanage or foster home with a large number of children who constitute a constant nuisance. The manager of the institution is unfriendly, even hostile, and Sophie and John find themselves being increasingly harassed by actions that may or may not originate from the orphanage. Their own lack of familiarity with the French language and culture constitutes an additional obstacle to their integration into local society, giving rise to situations that are comic at times, and less so at others.

The adventures and misadventures that befall the various characters lead to a surprising denouement, that puts everything that has gone before in a new light.

The events and situations described in the book are based in part on my own experiences and those of friends and acquaintances. My imagination has also played a role, though in the light of recent developments I feel that the book is prophetic.