Jess has just waved goodbye to her darling son, off backpacking to Oz.
She's left with two teenage daughters and husband Matt - all of whom find themselves regularly featured in her popular and lighthearted newspaper column in which she conveys to her readers an enviably cheery muddle of family life. Things become less rosy when Matt, after twenty years with the same firm, is made redundant.
Only Jess sees the potential calamity in this. Matt is delighted with his new freedom and takes to hanging out at the local bar with others of the male barely-employable tendency, drinking and drifting and dreaming up hopeless schemes to make them all rich.
Daughter no. 1, meanwhile, has taken up with a mysterious boy living in an abandoned car on the allotment, and her younger sister is over-burdened with a surfeit of secrets.
For Jess, trying to hold everything together and missing her first-flown child, it becomes ever-harder to maintain the carefree facade for her readers.
Of course she could just tell them the truth...
- Format: Paperback / softback
- Pages: 288 pages
- Publisher: Transworld Publishers Ltd
- Publication Date: 06/01/2001
- Category: Modern & contemporary fiction (post c 1945)
- ISBN: 9780552147644
- EPUB from £3.99