I’ve always loved to read but over the years as the children have come along I have less time to read. I try to read at least twice a week usually before bed as a means of relaxing but during holiday periods one of my favourite things to do is to curl up with a good book and lose myself in the story. Trisha Ashley has been one of my favourite authors for several years now, I find her books easy to read and thoroughly enjoyable. There is something about the way Trisha writes a such a descriptive way that I feel fully immersed in the plot. As soon as I’ve finished one of her books I want to read another and will often start looking for when the next one is due out.
Trisha’s latest book ‘A Christmas Cracker’ is out now and I have spent the last two days trying to grab every available moment to read it. On top of that I was thrilled when I had the chance to join in a blog tour for the release of the book along with nine other bloggers. If you fancy popping over and seeing what they have to say about ‘A Christmas Cracker’ you can find their names below.
‘So Harry, my boss at Champers&Chocs, told me to show the reporter the packing room and give him some information about the business, because it would be good publicity,’ I told Emma, my best and, as it turned out, only friend. It was only my second phone call out since I’d been sent to prison and it was good to unburden myself of the whole sorry story.
I’d have rung her and told her everything the moment I was first arrested, had her husband, Des, not been back from his latest foreign contract. He’d turned into such a possessive control freak he even resented sharing Emma with her female friends.
‘And I suppose the reporter snooped?’ she said.
‘Yes, when I had to leave him for a few minutes to go to the office to answer an urgent phone call. The line was dead when I got there and I was so naïve, it never occurred to me that this Charlie Clancy had set up the call to distract me. As soon as I was out of sight, he somehow got into the back room, even though it was usually locked when Harry wasn’t there, and photographed the crates of fake champagne.’
‘I do wish you’d told me about the fraud when you first found out about it, Tabby.’
‘You had enough on your plate as it was,’ I said. ‘And I’d handed in my notice when I realised Harry hadn’t stopped the fraud, so another couple of weeks and I’d have been out of there.’
‘It was a huge shock when I saw his secret film exposing the scam on that Dodgy Dealings programme, and there you were! And what was worse, Des was with me and he saw it, too.’
I shuddered. ‘I looked so shifty when the reporter asked me what went on in the back room and I replied that it was just an office . . . It was clear I knew what was happening.’
‘Maybe, but that doesn’t mean you were implicated in it. I feel guilty for letting Des persuade me to go on a family break with him and Marco to St Lucia before the end of the trial, even though I was sure you would be found not guilty.’
‘I thought so too, at first: I was just an employee, after all. But Harry tried to lay the blame for thinking up the scam on me and said we’d been having an affair, then Kate stood up in court and backed his story up.’
‘What a cow!’ Emma said.
I could still hear Kate’s voice as she stood there in the witness stand, all big, innocent baby-blue eyes, saying sadly, ‘Oh, yes, Tabitha told me in confidence that she’d thought up a way for Champers&Chocs to make some easy money, replacing the bottles of vintage champagne with cheap fakes. I told her it was illegal, but she just laughed and said no one would ever find out.’
‘But none of that was true,’ Emma said stoutly.
‘No, but I could see the jury didn’t believe me – and I suppose it did look bad that I hadn’t told the police, or handed in my notice as soon as I found out.’
I am currently just over half way through the book and am hooked. Yet again Trisha has brought the characters to life right from the first time you meet them. Tabby the main character grows with each chapter and I immediately found myself liking Mercy who comes to Tabby’s rescue and provides Tabby with a home and a job upon her release from Prison. Mercy brings Tabby to Little Mumming in the hamlet of Godsend where she introduces her to the other residents who all have their quirky ways. Can Tabby help save Mercy’s family cracker factory which Mercy’s nephew wants to see closed down? I can’t wait to find out what happens.
For those who have not read one of Trisha’s books before, what are you waiting for! and those who like me adore her books you won’t be disappointed with her latest offering. Available now from all good stockists with a rrp of £7.99.