For Better, for Worseby Carole Matthews
After her marriage to Damien ended in disaster, Londoner Josie Flynn thirtysomething and single again is flying across the ocean to her American cousin's "big mistake" wedding. In her present "love stinks" frame of mind, the last person she expects to be seated next to on the flight is someone like Matt Jarvis. A recently divorced rock journalist,… See more details below
After her marriage to Damien ended in disaster, Londoner Josie Flynn thirtysomething and single again is flying across the ocean to her American cousin's "big mistake" wedding. In her present "love stinks" frame of mind, the last person she expects to be seated next to on the flight is someone like Matt Jarvis. A recently divorced rock journalist, Matt is sensitive, good-looking, and remarkably attentive and before their plane touches down, Josie's smitten. So how can she hope to convince her cousin to cut and run when Josie is all ready to leap into love again with a stranger, no less, who might be just another Mr. Totally Wrong in Mr. Seductively Right's clothing?
The point is rendered moot, of course, once they deplane and she and Matt go their separate ways. After all, Josie's got prenuptial confabs to worry about and that dreaded lilac chiffon bridesmaid's dress to wear. But Dante himself couldn't have dreamed up the hell this wedding is proving to be and when her dream hunk reappears and throws himself into the mix, Josie finds herself wondering how she or any unattached modern woman, in fact can hope to survive the new romantic rules of the twenty-first century.
Already a bestseller in the U.K., Carole Matthews's For Better, for Worse is a deliriously droll, dead-on tale of marriage, sex, monogamy, and modern love.
- HarperCollins Publishers
- Publication date:
- Edition description:
- FIRST U.S
- Product dimensions:
- 5.31(w) x 8.00(h) x 0.79(d)
Meet the Author
Carole Matthews worked as a secretary for six years before retraining as a Beauty Therapist. She approached Britain's Central Television with suggestions for a beauty programme and went on to write and develop a health-based magazine series called Look Good, Feel Great. After leaving Central Television, Carole worked in a holistic clinic in Milton Keyes, England and wrote freelance articles. She wrote her first fiction in 1995 a short story that won the Writers News competition. She used the money to fund a writing course where she met her first literary agent. The rest, as they say, it history.
Already a best-selling author in England, Carole Matthews makes her American debut with For Better, For Worse, a book Kirkus Reviews calls "a cheeky romp from a best-selling Brit with a great sense of fun." The book, which has been optioned by Pandemonium Films, tells the story of recently divorced 30-something Londoner Josie Flynn. As her marriage ends in disaster, Josie flies across the ocean to her American cousin's "big mistake" wedding. Soured on love and in no rush to meet anyone, she ends up sitting next to Matt Jarvis a recently divorced rock journalist who she becomes smitten with before the plane touches down. But alas, they go their separate ways. After all, Josie's got prenuptial confabs to worry about and that dreaded lilac chiffon bridesmaid's dress to wear. But Dante himself couldn't have dreamed up the hell this wedding is proving to be. Josie finds herself wondering how she or any unattached modern woman, in fact can hope to survive the new romantic rules of the twenty-first century.
For Better, For Worse was recently chosen as the fourth book club selection of the phenomenally successful Reading with Ripa book club on the nationally syndicated morning show, "Live with Regis & Kelly". "It's a big five points for humour," said co-host Kelly Ripa. "Live with Regis and Kelly" started the Reading with Ripa book club in April 2002. Ripa's previous three picks have all landed on the New York Times bestseller list.
Carole Matthews is a self-proclaimed evening class-aholic. So far she has studied garden design, golf, calligraphy, feng shui, stencilling, style analysis, watercolour painting, flower arranging, kiln glass, mosaics, stained glass and wire sculpture (to name a few!) She also runs day courses on 'Getting Your Novel Published' for Bedfordshire Adult Ed. Carole is also mad about films and of course, reading! She reads 1-2 books every week and is currently trying her hand at film scripts. Carole says she is eager to write more books(bestsellers, of course), more sitcom and maybe a comedy drama. She would also like to see the world, laugh a lot, stay healthy and eventually become wealthy and wise.
More from this Author
Read an Excerpt
"I still think about you." There was a pause during which Josie presumed she was supposed to say something. "A lot," Damien added when she didn't.
Josie closed her eyes, marveling at the red splotches inside the lids, and sighed at the telephone. "I think about you a lot too, Damien. But it mainly involves dreaming up ways of inflicting pain on you." Ax through the head, winning the lottery, and Ewan McGregor failing desperately in love with her were the ones which currently featured most often. "Funnily enough, rather like you did to me."
She twisted a strand of her boring brown hair through her fingers and considered, not for the first time, getting it dyed one of those vibrant fashionable colors much vaunted in makeover programs. Would she look good as a Fiery Chestnut? Possibly. But it might be better with a more radical haircut than a neat bob that was more conservative than Dan Quayle. Did they do a Brunette Bombshell? Would it transform her life to switch to Brazen Ebony? Whichever way, the hair she currently had needed washing. Another chore to add to the growing list of things she had to do tonight and none of them involved wasting time talking to Damien. She wriggled her toes and eased the dead weight of her cat from her foot before he made it completely numb. The Cat Formerly Known As Prince gave her a look that would have turned ten blackbirds to stone. Josie blew him a kiss as he strutted into the kitchen, outraged tail flicking the air.
"I never meant to hurt you," Damien continued, intent, it seemed, on having his say.
"Comingout with 'I'm in love with someone else, goodbye' generally does."
"We should have talked things through."
"Damien, the first I knew about it was when you came down with a packed suitcase. I thought you were off to a computer conference in Margate or somewhere. I didn't expect you to end our marriage at nine o'clock on a Monday morning." Particularly not after we'd made love the night before and reached simultaneous orgasm -- both of which were very unusual for a Sunday. "You wouldn't talk about anything. Not even who would get custody of the cat. You breezed out as if you were going to buy a loaf of bread."
"I don't know what came over me," her husband said. "One minute I was happy, the next I wasn't."
"'Thing' came over you," Josie said. "Thing and her double-D cleavage and Lycra leopard-skin-effect thongs." (Yes, I have been to her house and peered over her garden wall. I know she has a rusting clothesline with two bits of wire missing and clothespins that don't match, showing a carelessness in the laundry department that you would never have tolerated from me!)
"It wasn't simply about Melanie."
Melanie, Josie mimicked, pulling a face fit to sour milk down the phone.
"Although, I admit, she was the catalyst."
Catalyst? Home wrecker!
"I feel as if I have made an awful mistake," Damien said. "A really awful mistake."
"And how's that supposed to make me feel? I'm just getting my life back together. I no longer need a ton of Kleenex just to watch EastEnders. I am no longer emaciated and blotchy and look like I have some deadly disease. Strangers no longer shy away from me in the street. Friends have stopped telling me that I really should see the doctor. I'm happy."
"Yes." It came across as a little too defiant to ring true.
There was another uncomfortable pause.
"How's The Cat Formerly Known As Prince?" he said more brightly.
"He's delirious. Eating his Kit-e-Kat like there's no tomorrow. He's coping very well with being a single-parent feline."
"Good." Damien didn't sound as if he thought it was good. "What's it like being a substitute daddy?"
Damien exhaled slowly. "Tougher than I thought."
Josie smirked to herself.
"The kids put Lego in unspeakable places, I've just had to spend an inordinate amount of money getting biscuits and chocolate chip cookies extracted from my laptop, and they leave toast crumbs in the bed. Most nights, it feels as if I'm sleeping in Prince's litter box."
I bet that curtails the wild sex sessions that were much vaunted in the early days!
"Does Thing know you phone me?"
She heard Damien bite his nails. Something he always did when he was contemplating lying. "No."
"So where is she now?"
"At Tesco's. Late-night shopping."
Whoop-de-doo! And I thought my life was boring!
"Did you tell her the divorce papers have come through?" More nail nibbling. "No."
"You haven't sent them back yet?"
The Cat Formerly Known As Prince started a hearty wail at the kitchen door. Josie put her hand over the mouthpiece. "I'll be two minutes," she whispered. "You won't starve."
The Cat Formerly Known As Prince gave her a look that said, If-l-could-use-a-can-opener-I'd-be-out-of-here.
"Is it really what we want?" Damien was using his best cajoling voice. The one he used to reserve for getting her out of bed on the weekends to make him bacon sandwiches. "Really and truly?"
"Even as we speak, my papers are languishing with Live It Up, Live It Down, and Live with It -- or something like thatsolicitors to the terminally impoverished. just sign them, Damien."
"I don't think we should rush into this."
"You already did."
"I don't deserve this, Josie. You can't throw five years of marriage down the drain."
You did. I can.
"Can't I come round to see you?"
"I won't be here."
"Where are you going?"
"That's nothing to do with you."
"I'm still..."For Better, for Worse. Copyright © by Carole Matthews. Reprinted by permission of HarperCollins Publishers, Inc. All rights reserved. Available now wherever books are sold.
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