I first became aware of The Newbury Short Story teller, aka Martin Strike, while I was editing my local Cats Protection magazine. His lovely wife wrote a piece about the cat they’d recently adopted from the charity. Martin emailed me to see if I’d be interested in using a story he’d written in the magazine as well. Unfortunately, I couldn’t use it in the magazine, but I loved the story so much I asked if I could use it on my blog. Since then, Martin’s entertaining stories have featured on my blog several times.
Martin decided to put together a number of his stories and to bring them out in a collection. Each story has some relevance to Newbury, the town we both live in. As I’m Newbury born and bred, and I love Martin’s writing, I was keen to read them. The blurb says:
‘Velvet Owl are proud to publish this trove of 16 humorous short stories set in an alternative Newbury where inhabitants are often bitter, twisted or just plain bonkers. Whether you are a Newburian or not, you are invited to read of debacles at the Newbury Model Train Enthusiasts Society, egg rivalries, the pratfalls of a hypochondriacal antique collector and the unlikely effects of drinking dishwater. It’s got more twists than the Kennet & Avon canal, not that that has any twists. Please note that 10% of books price will be donated to the Daisy Garland Charity – which supports children with drug-resistant epilepsy and their families.‘
If you’re looking for entertainment, then this book is it. Being a Newburian, the stories held special meaning for me, but you don’t need to know the slightest thing about Newbury to enjoy the stories. Martin has a way of thinking completely outside the box and then some! Several of the stories had me giggling away to myself. My favourite has to be The Turbothrob Triple-X, followed closely by Mobile Groans. A thoroughly recommended read.