Win an e-reader and a hamper of ebooks with Pan Macmillan and Marie Claire! Click here for the details on how to enter – and read on for excerpts from two of the books that you can win.
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Mushy Peas on Toast follows the trail of a typical Jo’burg gal – Peas – who works hard and plays hard. Life is going well until she breaks up with her long-term boyfriend, and with the help of her extravagant Italian flatmate, begins a journey of self-discovery:
Back on the wagon
I am back in the dating game. After just a month. This has taken even me by surprise. I officially got lucky on Saturday – smooch lucky. With a guy called Hansel. Handsome Hansel is Austrian. It happened in a dark corner of Manhattan, a place for drunk, single people.
If he’s sensible, he won’t phone me again. But it’s all right if he isn’t sensible, I feel like a little roll in the hay, actually. I miss intimacy and am sick of hugging a bottle in order to find some. However, a month on from our unofficial divorce, I have hit my first getting-over-Anthony obstacle. He’s going on a date with someone from his bloody polo club. Apparently, as Bennet claims, but I take this information with a pinch of salt, she has a moustache.
So I’m not going to blow the fireworks they potentially have out of proportion. Plus she swings a polo mallet around. A moustached mallet-swinging bird. I will not panic.
It does, however, feel like I’ve been impaled in the stomach with a blunt instrument. When I first heard the news, I couldn’t breathe for an hour. My colleague Dierdra had to take me to the Radium Beer Hall during lunch for a double gin and tonic. Needless to say, after another two gins, I started breathing normally again.
It sorted me out because I’m reeling with resentment. I will now date with a vengeance. Guilt-free. I worried for a brief second that Anthony would feel hurt that I’m already dating, but if he’s out on the prowl then I’d better get out there too – even if I’m not quite ready. There’s no way he’s allowed to move on before I do. That is way too humiliating. Last night I went out with Austrian Hansel to prove to myself that I’m now really on the market.
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In The Thirtieth Candle, thirtieth birthdays loom… Skeletons come creeping out of closets… How will this birthday end? Linda has just cast off yet another lover, while Dikeledi can’t seem to pin her fast-talking lawyer down to talk about marriage. Nolwazi has a secret – one she can’t share, even with her closest friends, while Sade has found the perfect man, and a new life that will shut out the horrors of her past forever. Or will it?
Linda was the first to arrive. She parked beneath the carport next to Sade’s Mini Cooper, and grabbed her cellphone to check on Nolwazi and Dikeledi. To her distress, Nolwazi’s phone was still off.
It was already six thirty. Was she with her secret lover? Linda hoped not. The man sounded like pure poison. There was a lot about Nolwazi’s relationship with him that Linda did not understand, especially the fact that he was a secret in the first place. Linda was very bad at keeping secrets, but she had promised Nolwazi never to mention the man to Sade or Dikeledi. The sheer effort of it made her want to gag.
She tried Dikeledi, who confirmed that she was on her way. As Linda walked up to the front door of Sade’s classy, modern cluster, the door opened before she knocked.
“Hi, girl. Looking good,” said Sade, offering Linda a warm hug.
“Thanks, you too. This whole engagement thing agrees with you.”
As Linda made herself comfortable on one of Sade’s cream leather ottomans, she noticed that Sade had changed her curtains. In place of her old, standard white linen curtains she had fitted glorious designer curtains made with a mixture of creamy organza and toffee-brown taffeta material. The results were quite impressive. The house looked elegant from every angle. Sade had always had good taste, and now, with the new job, she seemed to have launched into a serious style offensive.
“Your home looks really great, Sade. Do you have some Chardonnay while we wait for the girls?”
“Oh, wine is something that I don’t stock these days. Winston is not much of an alcohol person.”
“Well … yes, but you are.”
Sade pursed her red lips. “Ja, but … you know how it is in a relationship sometimes.”
“What? Are you pretending to be something you’re not?” asked Linda.
“Hey, wena. You’re always jumping to conclusions. Let’s go to Woolies quickly and grab some wine without an interrogation please.”
“Now you’re talking.”