On a grey and miserable morning in 2008, London businesswoman, Angelica Ford boards a plane and flies off to the blues and greens of her mother’s island in the Caribbean. Angelica is desperate. She is looking for a way to save her marriage and win back her daughter. A web of lies has torn a hole into her seemingly perfect world and she is convinced that only her mother, Josephine Dennis, can help her turn her life around.Josephine Dennis arrived in England by ship on a cold winter’s morning as a young mother joining her husband. She weathers a lifetime of secrets and betrayal, as she raises her family in 1960s London. A matriarch with strong family values, she told her children colourful stories to guide them through life. It is the wisdom of one of these stories that Angelica seeks. Josephine has one last story to tell – the story that could change both of their lives.
ABOUT THE AUTHOR:
Fran Clark was born and currently lives in West London. Her first novel, Holding Paradise, is published in 2014 by Indigo Dreams Publishing. Fran is studying for a Creative Writing MA at Brunel University. A professional-singer songwriter and vocal coach, she recently released her second album of original songs. She is now working towards the completion of her second novel.
They placed his body carefully into the back seat of the old car. Thomas got into the passenger seat and looked over his shoulder at his old friend lying still, as if asleep. One woman from the crowd of onlookers wailed. The rest of the party watched in silence as the old car disappeared. The last trace of daylight was engulfed by the night sky as Raphael’s body was carried along in the dark toward the island’s only hospital.
When darkness fell on the Douglas house, Rose was standing in the kitchen cursing her husband for not observing her specific instructions about travelling the roads by night. She replaced the supper utensils purposefully as she cursed.
Rose finished her work in the kitchen, stopped, and looked up at the house where she saw Josephine sitting by the open door looking down at her feet, a solitary figure hunched on the top step. Rose felt a cold shiver sweep over her body. She had gone about her day not wanting to hear anything about her daughter’s dream. She’d packed the oldest off to school, washed and changed into a simple dress, entertained the young ones, swept the yard, tidied the house and adjusted her favoured red headscarf several times. Even during dinner, Rose had avoided remarking on Josephine’s distant stare.
Looking out of the little kitchen window toward the road, Rose saw the light of a torch and could identify the figures of a small group of people walking toward the house. Their voices were low at first, muffled. As she stepped, tentatively, into the yard, she could hear someone crying. The group of people closed in on her. Her children, now aware of the stirring of the crowd, gathered at the front door to see what was going on. Josephine rose from her seat.
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