Pillow Talk

Pillow Talk

by Freya North
3.4 482


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Pillow Talk by Freya North

"Darkly funny and sexy-literary escapism at its finest." -Independent

By day, Petra Flint is a talented jeweler working in a lively London studio. By night, she's a sleepwalker troubled by a past she can't put to bed and a present that leaves her clinging to an unsuitable boyfriend. Arlo Savidge was once a budding heartthrob musician. Then tragedy struck and he chose to forsake stardom and all future affairs of the heart for a quiet life in the countryside as a music teacher.

Petra and Arlo haven't seen each other since they were teenagers-when their feelings ran deep but the timing wasn't right. Now, seventeen years later, they run into each other once more. Might first love get a second chance-or will what keeps them up at night keep them apart forever?

Praise for Pillow Talk
"I defy anyone who doesn't fall in love with it." -Glamour

"Warm, sexy, satisfying." -Heat

"North charts the emotional turmoil with a sexy exactitude." -Marie Claire

"Another North gem."-OK

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9781402254468
Publisher: Sourcebooks
Publication date: 07/01/2011
Pages: 464
Product dimensions: 5.20(w) x 7.90(h) x 1.30(d)

About the Author

Freya North gave up a PhD to write her first novel in 1991. She has written ten novels, all of which have been bestsellers. She lives in London with her family. In 2008 she won the RNA Award for Romantic Novel of the Year for Pillow Talk. Visit www.freyanorth.com

Read an Excerpt

Something isn't quite right-I have a hunch about this. But I think I'll just tuck it into the back of my mind while I tuck my feet into my wellington boots. Now I'll open my front door and step out into the night.

I'm ready. Where is it I'm meant to be going? I can't quite remember. It'll come back to me in a moment. I'll just put one foot in front of the other and trust myself. I am turning left. If I am automatically taking this direction to Wherever, this must mean it is the right way to go.

Now where am I? I'm glad I'm wearing my gumboots. That was a good idea. I had to rummage for them as I can't remember when I last wore them. I can't remember when I last had a weekend away from the city. No one has ever whisked me away. Not that I've ever asked-that wouldn't be me. That's not to say I haven't daydreamed of it, though.

But enough of this mental meandering, I must walk on. This way. That way. I don't feel very comfortable. I'm rather cold and my feet feel-strange.

I'm hoping for the landmark to loom, to say to me that I've arrived at my destination. I know metaphysics would say that it's not the arriving but the journey that's the point-but I'm going to have to have a sit-down and a rethink if I don't get there soon. Perhaps I've gone the wrong way. I don't want to admit to myself that I don't really know the route because that would call into question the destination which, actually, I can't remember at all.

Well, I'll keep on walking this way. My feet are really sore. I'd love a bar of chocolate. I'm quite tired now. Sleepy, in fact. Something will jog my memory.

It was not Petra Flint's memory that was jogged. It was her slumber. By the police. She woke with a start and in a panic; for a split second she thought she was blind. Actually it was very dark and she was lying face down on the ground. Earthy, itchy ground, and wet.

"Are you OK?"

Petra lifted her head a little and glanced up: two police officers were looming over her. The sudden beam from a torch scorched her eye so she dropped her gaze and put her face back to the ground. She was wearing her nightshirt and her wellington boots, which were on the wrong feet, and she felt mortified. She also felt alarmingly cold. She spat. There was a tickle of grass and a crunch of soil in her mouth. The torch beam wavered. Shit. The police. She scrambled up, whacked by nausea as she did so. Disoriented, she still sensed an urgency to explain because it couldn't look good, to the police, that she'd been found sprawled on the ground in an oversized Snoopy T-shirt and wellies.

"Are you OK?" one officer asked, steadying Petra; the firm arm of the law surprisingly gentle at her elbow.

"Oh, I'm fine," she told them, hoping to sound convincing but certain she sounded guilty. She looked around her. She recognized nothing. She didn't know where she was. A park. "Where is this?" She caught the glance that passed between the officers. She just wanted to go home. Warm up. Tuck in tight for a better night's sleep. Better not ask any more questions then, better leave that to the police. Better still, give them answers before they even ask. "My name is Petra Flint," she said clearly, "and I sleepwalk."

Oh my God, my grandmother is dead. The shrill of the phone woke Rob with a start; his ailing grandmother his primary thought. He grabbed at his watch, noting it was almost three in the morning as he said hullo. He listened carefully, soon enough faintly amused by how he could be relieved it was just the police. Grandma is fine, Rob thought, though he wondered whether he'd now jinxed her life by anticipating her death.

"Yes-Petra Flint," he said with the measured bemusement of a parent being called before their child's head teacher. "Petra is my girlfriend. Yes, she is known to sleepwalk-though usually she takes measures to prevent this, keeps herself under lock and key. You found her where?"

He scrambled into some clothes muttering that Christ he was tired. As he found Petra's keys and snatched up his own from the mantelpiece, he wondered why somnambulists never managed to subconsciously take their keys when they took off into the night. On one sortie, Petra had filled her coat pockets with onions. On another she had taken the remote control from the television with her, having first removed the batteries and placed them in a careful configuration on the kitchen table. In the ten months Rob had known Petra and on the many occasions she had sleepwalked, only a few times had she made it out into the night yet not once had she taken her keys. Or a penny. Or her phone. And, as he drove off towards Whetstone at the behest of the police, Rob decided that, in this age of mobile telecommunication, it was for sleepwalkers alone that phone boxes still existed, providing shelter and the reverse-charges call until someone arrived to take them home. This was, however, the first time he'd been called by the police.

Her sheepish expression could have been due as much to her Snoopy nightshirt as to the circumstance. Rob thought she looked rather cute, all forlorn and mortified. If he ignored the wellington boots and the dirt on her chin.

"Petra," he said, raising an eyebrow towards the duty officer, "what were you thinking?"

He always asks me that, Petra thought petulantly. And he never listens when I say I don't think, I don't know. Somewhere, in the deeper reaches of my subconscious state which I simply cannot access when I'm awake, I obviously thought that this was a very good idea at the time.

She shrugged. "Do you have my keys?"

"Yes," he said, "come on." He put his fleece jacket around her shoulders and bit his tongue against commenting on her wellington boots. They certainly weren't Hunters, they weren't even imitations. These were old-fashioned: shapeless tubes of black rubber reaching the unflattering point midway up her bare calves. Tomorrow, he'd see the funny side. Tonight he was tired and a little irritated.

"One day you'll get hurt, you know," Rob warned her, before starting the car.

My feet really hurt right now, Petra thought, even though each boot was now on the correct foot. "I'm sorry," she said, pressing the side of her head hard against the car window, the judder at her temples convincing her she was truly awake. "I can't remember a thing. I don't know where I was going."

"So you always say," Rob nodded. "Do you mind if I don't come in?" he said, soon pulling up outside Petra's flat. "I have clients from Japan first thing in the morning."

"Sorry," Petra shuffled, "sorry."

Rob looked at her, his exasperation softening a little. "It's all right. It's fine," he said. "Goodnight, Petra-and lock your bloody bedroom door."

Customer Reviews

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Pillow Talk 3.4 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 482 reviews.
Leah-books More than 1 year ago
What a great read! really enjoyed it. It was very easy for me to connect to the characters
bklvr67 More than 1 year ago
This is a good book read awhile ago. Nice twists and turns. It will make you laugh and cry.
Guest More than 1 year ago
I really enjoyed reading htis book. Her writting reminds my a lot of Rachel Gibson (whom I love). It was just a really good read.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Will ppl PLEASE stop giving away every detail of the book in their review....re harriet klausner? You ruin every book for me by revealing the entire story line. You can review a book without giving away the entire plot!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Not for kids due to a wee bit of graphic content. The plot was fun and well done. The characters have real life issues that are not in the "perfect male or perfect female " characters that you see in a majority of novels today. Enjoyable read!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I thought the book started out fine just like a romance novel. But the story went in so many ways that it started to be too much detail and not enough dialog. The story kept changing from third person to first person. I skimmed the last 100 pages skipping many chapters. I did not miss much. The book neverended it just droned on. The author had a great idea for a plot. I would have liked more of a "beach read".
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Sorry but as a teacher of English, I refused to continue reading when the author went from third tense to first at the start of Chapter 3. Then Chapter 4 was back in third. In future chapters, she used both tenses, switching like they were windshield wipers. One of the FIRST rules of narrative fiction is pick a tense and stick to it. Epic fail.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
The first 1/3 of this book was so boring...it seemed to drag on forever. It was entirely too much back story. I wanted so badly to quit reading, but I have never quit in the middle of the book. I forced myself to keep going and eventually the story picked up. However, it was really predictable. The characters were nothing special, and neither was the storyline. I can't say I'd recommend this book, but I can't say not to read it either...just be prepared to ne bored out of your mind at yhe beginning.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
This book is just so...British. I was constantly looking up phrases ("pop socks"? Huh?!) I found it rather slow in the first half...I mean, you KNOW what's going to happen from the premise, but it takes SO long to happen! The author could have started the book at the point of the incident that sends our heroine away from London...we would have gotten the gyst of it from a few pages of flashbacks. Choppy in parts, too much detail where it isn't needed, not enough where it actually is needed. Okay but not great.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
A romantic novel with more depth and heart than than a dime store romance. The British setting and vocabulary freshens it up and gives the story added legitimacy. All in all it is an entertaining read perfect for vacation.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I had high hopes for this book, but was disappointed. This is the first book ever that i didnt finish. It moved so slow and all the british phrases were hard to understand. I had to look the meaning up and it took away from the story.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
British phraseology throughout book. Lots of new vocabulary to look up while reading.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I hate to not finish what I've started when it comes to reading but I gave this book to the hundreth page to decide if I would finish it or not. It was really slow going at the start and somewhat boring but luckily right around the hundreth page things picked up a little bit and I did finish it. It wasn't bad. The two secrets that were eventually revealed by the two main characters kept me interested and I even learned a little bit about the history of the precious stone Tanzanite. I'm eager to look it up and see for myself what all the fuss is about. Thanks again B&N for another decent Free Friday read.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Horrible writing. Couldnt stay focused on what I was trying to understand. Had to stop reading and DELETE this book after 4 chapters. There is an hour of reading I will never get back
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Alot of new phrases to try and look up due to British quotes that I did not know. Was slow getting into and I felt like I was jumping all over the place. Definately, not a high recommend on this book unless you get right into and enjoy it from the beginning. I had to force myself to finish.
gdelbooks More than 1 year ago
The reviews I read were either fantastic 5 stars or horrible 1 star. I come down in the middle. It is a cute little story about first love rediscovered and conquering obstacles. Some complained about the sex, it wasn't that graphic or frequent. One downside for the American reader would be the "British" vocabulary. I was able to follow the story quite well with only the occasional pause to figure out a phrase or word. if the reader must know the meaning of each word or phrase, and is not English this might be a tedious book for them.
fantasyjoy More than 1 year ago
I enjoyed this book as the author writes very well and tells a great story. It captured my attention and was an excellent read. Thanks
oneiric More than 1 year ago
Not bad. What you'd expect of a Brit chick lit. Don't know how true to reality it is but it was interesting to read how Petra and her jewelry-maker friends work. I even gained new perspective in reading the difficulties Petra faces as a sleepwalker. Story flowed well - even with the flashbacks - and it was an easy read.
vpsVS More than 1 year ago
This was a free book which alone made it good. It was a little slow but the pace picked up once the couple reunited. I enjoy reading this type of novel from British authors, most are easy to follow but this particular author is very into British slang, in which case I am left hanging. Overall, enjoyable, light read.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
It was okay read, she needs a good editor, the story got a little lost. There was a lot of detail that got in the way of the story. The main characters were a little sappy and it took a long time for them to get moving.
rp33 More than 1 year ago
I found it to be a fun book to read.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I didn't really get into this book until about half way through. Too many British terms for easy reading. Perhaps I should stay with American authors.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I will always try to finish a book but this one became impossible for me. I read the first few chapters but the style of writing left much to be desired. The story line was uninteresting and character developement was weak. I will delete without finishing.
jmm44 More than 1 year ago
The ending is more interesting than the beginning. It kind of 'dragged' in places
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
This book is the most put-downable book I have read in a long time. Is just never grabbed me. It is wonderful that the strangle hold the publishers had on the market is diminished, but unfortunately, quality is too. In all fairness, this is the first of Freya North's books that I have read. It is possible later books reflect increased technique.