Sunday, February 22, 2015

Paula's Sunday Snippet - another sneak preview of 'Irish Intrigue'

Continuing the first meeting between Charley and Luke in a small supermarket in Clifden, County Galway:

"Hunter was my mother-in-law's maiden name. Maybe you share the same ancestry.

"Maybe." She'd no intention of telling him it was her married surname. "I've never done any family history research."

"Me neither. Can't run the risk of finding ancestors who were sheep stealers, or cattle rustlers, or horse thieves. Could ruin my reputation."

Intrigued, she raised her eyebrows. "Why?"

"I'm a vet. My clients might think I'm out to steal their animals."

She laughed. "I don't think thieving is in one's genes."

"Ach, I'm not so sure. I once stole six daffodils from the churchyard for my mam on Mother's Day. I 'fessed up at the end of the day, though. Guilty conscience, it was."

"How old were you?"

"Seven, and I'd spent all my money on a card for her, so I couldn't afford any flowers."

"I'm sure she understood."

"She was relieved, 'cause she thought I might have nicked them from the shop in the village. But she made me buy and plant six daffodil bulbs in the churchyard later that year."

Charley smiled. "Wise lady."

"Aye, taught me a lesson I never forgot."

"So your clients probably aren't in any danger of you becoming a horse thief."

He laughed, a deep rich laugh that sent a ripple through her. "I hope so. Anyhow, what brings you to this neck of the woods? We don't see many visitors here once summer's over."

She hesitated before deciding vagueness was the best response. "I have a temporary contract at a hotel near Lough Doona."

"And you're English, aren't you?"

"Yes, I've just flown over from London."

"London? Sure, and you'll find things somewhat quieter here."

"Of course. Do you live locally?"

He glanced down at his brown cords and mud-spattered black boots. "Aye, I suppose I do fit a Londoner's image of an Irish culchie—country bumpkin to you, but I clean up quite well when I'm not working."

"I'm sorry, I didn't mean—" Momentarily flustered, she saw his eyes crinkling in amusement again. "I didn't even notice what you were wearing. Your Galway accent gives you away."

"Oi be born and brawt up here, so will ye let this culchie buy ye a cuppa tea?" he replied in an even broader accent which made her laugh. "Just to show there's no hard feelings," he went on in his normal voice. "There's a pub across the way that serves tea, or coffee, if you prefer."

Recognising the gleam of admiration in his eyes, but recalling his phone call about some kids and his mention of a mother-in-law, she shook her head. The last thing she needed was a philandering married man who accosted lone women in supermarkets. "Thanks, but I must finish my shopping and then carry on to—to my friend's place."

The small white lie slipped out. Although he seemed genuine, common sense warned her against admitting she would be alone at a cottage in an Irish village.

'Irish Intrigue' will be released at the beginning of March.


  1. I'm not sure if I can wait until the beginning of March to find out what this whole mother-in-law thing is about! You have totally tickled my curiosity.

    And a wise lady to not tell she'll be all alone...

    1. Just completing the edits now, Debra, and the cover is done. Publisher is hoping to release on March 1st!

  2. I love this, Paula. So much revealed so smoothly.

  3. Replies
    1. Thanks, Jen. It worked well with his phone call at the beginning instead of at the end!

  4. Intrigue in the title is perfect. I'm intrigued by this snippet and can't wait to read your book.

    1. Thanks, Margaret. There is a lot more intrigue to follow!