Max, the central character in my next novel, had a tough life until he met Anna. Bullied at school and the victim of a fraud instigated by his best friend that left him almost bankrupt, he felt at twenty-five life was not the great gig people had made out, and he questioned the worth of living. Luckily, as he started to slide into depression and nearer to taking his life, he was offered the job he had sought as a journalist with a well-respected weekly current affairs journal read by millions throughout the world, giving him the fillip he needed and restoring his sanity.
He met Charlie six months into his time at The World Today. Never having a serious girlfriend before, it was easy for him to fall in love with her. She was pretty, outgoing, and popular and they moved in together after a torrid month of dating. A warm and loving relationship, he thought, until after a year he found she was cheating on him. Twice every week she’d say she was working late, but she wasn’t, she was sleeping with another man. A common lie, he was told by friends, but not a situation he had ever suspected.
Devastated, and fearing his demons might return, he searched online and found Emma. Eager and without hesitation, he struck up a relationship with her. After six weeks they started to live together, and the time Emma started to take control over his life. He could go along with her bedroom and bathroom linen, her cutlery and crockery, her kitchen aides and utensils, but when she started taking down his ornaments, his paintings and pictures, rearranging his books and telling him what to read, eat, and how to dress, he flipped. They had a flaming row and an acrimonious split.
Work became his saving grace. For a year he worked almost every waking hour. He’d jump out of bed, shower, and walk out of his apartment eating his breakfast while checking news’ updates related to his current project. Always first in the office, he’d work until nine or ten most nights, and once home he’d make a snack, check over his day’s work and go to bed. His diligence was noticed and rewarded. Shortly into his second year, he was offered a position as The World Today’s correspondent in Rome; and there he found Anna Bagloni.
They met through work, and to Max’s surprise, his reticence, and not in any way expecting or wanting their meeting to lead to anything further, he found her charm and warm heartedness captivating and infectious. To his surprise when she offered to show him around Rome he accepted and within a couple of months he’d moved in with her.
A relationship that was meant to be, they both thought. A true partnership, both best friends of the other, and supporting each other in everything they did. Anna only wanted the best for Max and he the same for her. They were truly in love. When Anna asked Max about his parents and he said he had never known his father and his relationship with his mother was not close, he found she’d opened up a part of his life he had kept locked away. He felt good talking about it.
So, at the age of the age of thirty-five Max started living the second part of his life and discovering the parents he had not known.
My recent publications
Life in four stories
All proceeds go to the INTERNATIONAL COMMITTEE OF THE RED CROSS (ICRC) to help the most vulnerable communities fight COVID – 19.
Four shorts: two about life, love, and death; one a poignant and disturbing memory that dangles a question unanswered; and one a wild fantasy – plus the first chapter of my latest book, Otto and Frankie.
By buying this book you are helping fund ICRC in its valuable work.
My latest novel, Otto and Frankie, is about a dying man’s fight against injustice, his wife’s unusual affair, and the love from his long-lost daughter.
Otto and his daughter Frankie could not be more different. He’s rich, an acclaimed author, human rights activist, and lives in England. She lives in New York, just about survives from one pay cheque to the next and hasn’t seen or spoken to her father for twenty years. Dutifully reunited by his impending death, she’s amazed to find him a kind and noble man who, while grappling with his wife’s bizarre affair, champions for the world’s forgotten and dispossessed to his last. After Otto’s death, Frankie’s admiration for her father leads her into a dangerous and life changing pursuit.