Fiction Sneak Peek: September 2, 2017 issue

It's romance all the way this week in our serials.

I’m starting with the serials this week because I want to bask in the sunshine and Mediterranean mood of the illustration for “Sanctuary Island” by Lydia Jones. Ah, that’s better. This week it’s romance, romance, romance!

In Heather Pardoe’s “Together We Stand”, meanwhile, we skip back to 1904, and Tanni’s doing that very modern thing of conducting a photo shoot on the pier. Sailesh Thakrar has illustrated this beautifully.

Short stories

So that was the serials. Now for the short stories.

“In A Jam” by Sharon Dexter has the write-up, “Could Carrie sweeten up the local MP with her nan’s home-made preserve?” But what is it she needs to sweeten him up about? Illustration: Martin Baines.

A cute little illustration by Sarah Holliday is just right for Della Galton’s cute little story “Brief Encounter”. Eddie knows he should take a chance and call Ella. What’s the worst that can happen?

“Pastures New” by Jessma Carter was inspired by the first Story Starter image I ever posted here on my blog, the one of the doll on the bench. Jessma has spun the idea into a lovely story about friendship. Illustration: Jim Dewar.

Another Mediterranean story prolongs the summer mood, this one by Wendy Clarke, “The Song Of The Cicadas”. Kirsty can’t wait to return to the Greek island where she met her husband….

We’ve had a couple of Westerns lately. Do you like them? I hope so because here’s another, by Margaret Skipworth. “Along The Oregon Trail” is set in 1843, with Ellen and her family making this brave but risky journey towards a new future. Illustration by Gerard Fay. I do like these and it allows writers to try something different.

“Cultivating Friends” by Alison Carter is a sharp, funny and very well observed story about the nature of friendship, when it’s false and when it’s true. Smashing story.

What can I say about “Tina The Taxi Driver” that isn’t obvious from the title? It’s by Glenda Young. It’s fun, a day in the life of….


Ta-daa. This week sees the return of “Tales From Prospect House” by Malcolm Welshman. Yes, more crazy tales from the vet practice. This week: Horace the hamster…

And you can’t miss our weekly soap “Riverside” by Glenda Young. Mary’s not herself. In fact, she’s had to go to the doc. Oh dear, I hope she’s all right…

There. I hope it wasn’t too discombobulating for you to have the serials first!

Shirley Blair

Fiction Ed Shirley’s been with the “Friend” since 2007 and calls it her dream job because she gets to read fiction all day every day. Hobbies? Well, that would be reading! She also enjoys writing fiction when she has time, long walks, travel, and watching Scandi thrillers on TV.