Acquired from publisher Oct 2010

Paul’s publisher kindly sent me an advance copy of this one – Brenda and Effie vol 5!  Well, this one’s a bit sad.  Brenda and Effie have had a falling-out, and it’s over Men, of course, with Brenda’s beau being fairly keen to see Effie’s off the premises.  Told from the viewpoint of Brenda, Effie and dear old Robert (perhaps my favourite character in this series, and hooray, he’s got a new chap to help him get over the disappointment of the faerie fellow from the last book), we gallop through a range of references, including skillful weaving of past and present, some great use of "The Lost World" and a reference to another book that made me hoot with joy (but to reveal which is was would be to include a dirty great spoiler!).  Paul’s vintage Corrie/ Alan Bennett way with observation and the use of words is here again, and there are some great ideas and set pieces.  Has he taken Brenda and Effie as far as they can go, though, or will there be more…?

Note: I’m waiting for a smaller paperback version to come out in March – I’ll circulate this copy to those local or who don’t mind the higher postage…