Today I have an excerpt from Summer at Blue Sands Cove by CP Ward.
Summer at Blue Sands Cove
Tired of the city, Grace Clelland returns to Blue Sands, the quiet Cornish seaside village where she grew up. There she will meet old flames and old friends, rekindle old loves and ignite new ones in a novel that will have you dreaming of the soft crash of the waves on the shore, the feel of sand between your toes, overloaded ice-creams and smoky beach barbeques.
Grace returns to Blue Sands for the first time in several years.
Being disabled hadn’t impacted the violence of Joan’s driving. With her heart in her mouth, Grace hung on to the armrest for dear life as Joan hacked them through the worst of Cornwall’s country lanes at a harrowing speed, working the car from a system of buttons fitted to the steering wheel.
‘Wow, forgot about that pothole,’ Joan said, as they bumped through half a mine shaft dug out of the middle of the road with such violence that Grace bounced up out of the seat.
‘So, what’s changed?’ Grace gasped, hoping the distraction of conversation might encourage Joan to slow down. ‘How’s the Low Anchor? Still run by Dawn and Craig?’
Joan shook her head as they came to a straight section where Grace was able to catch her breath. ‘Nope. Remember that stuck up Gomersall girl? Taylor?’
‘Tay Gomersall, her of the weird name. Ha, yeah, I remember. A few years below us at school.’
‘Well, Craig got caught shagging her out by the Mourning Lady a couple of summers back. One of the Thompson boys was out there walking his dog.’ Joan grinned. ‘Man, the gossip was going off for a while. Anyway, long story short, Craig and Dawn got divorced, they sold the pub, and Craig shacked up with Taylor in one of those council flats up on Black Rock Drive. Got himself a job as a lifeguard, acting all young like.’
‘Wasn’t he like, old?’
‘Forties. Yeah. Proper made a tit of himself. Anyway, he got sacked because some tourist kid got in trouble in the undertow last September. Craig couldn’t get to him, and a couple of locals had to pull him out. Lost his job, Taylor dumped him, and they both ended up leaving. Last I heard she was at nursing college and he was running a bar in Plymouth.’
‘Wow, I’m totally out of the loop, it looks like. Who owns the pub now?’
Joan grimaced. ‘Ah, um … Daniel. Um, Daniel Woakes.’
Grace felt like someone had slapped her from the inside, making her cheeks smart from the inside out.
‘Dan? You’ve got to be having a laugh. As in my ex-boyfriend, Dan?’
Joan took both hands off the wheel long enough to make quotation marks in the air. ‘Your teenage love, yeah.’
‘Please hold the wheel.’
‘Ha, sure.’ Joan grabbed the wheel just in time to hack them round a blind corner. As the hedgerow opened out, Grace half expected to find a tractor coming the other way, but luckily the road was clear.
‘For your information, he wasn’t my teenage love.’
‘You just shagged him a few times?’
‘It was more than that.’
‘But less than total infatuation?’
‘Somewhere in the middle. Is it going to be awkward me showing up? We didn’t part on the best of terms.’
‘You dumped him, didn’t you?’
‘We broke up. There’s a difference. I went to university, he stayed here. God, we were only teenagers.’
Joan grinned. ‘Weren’t those the days?’
‘We had some good times.’
‘We had a lot of good times. But, since you were asking, I’m not sure about awkward, but I wouldn’t go expecting locals’ rates. It’s been a while, but he might be a bit salty about everything.’ Joan leaned across and nudged Grace’s arm, making the car swerve dangerously close to a thorny hedge. ‘After all, you went off to the big city to go to university and make something of yourself, leaving him behind in a nowhere seaside village.’
‘And look how that worked out. It turns out a degree in history is only good enough to wait tables, and meanwhile, my uneducated, country bumpkin ex becomes the owner of the most popular pub in the area.’
‘Don’t worry, there are a few nerds from school still around. I’m sure we can find someone who’ll let you play the sympathy card.’
As she hacked into another blind corner, Joan had tears in her eyes and a wide grin on her face.
‘It’s so good to have you back, Graceful. Here we are. Just as you remember.’
CP Ward is an author from the UK who currently lives and works in Japan. For more information, please visit http://www.amillionmilesfromanywhere.net/cp-ward.html