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…with Lulu

As Lulu announces she’s going to be a gran she chats about her own insecurities as a mum and how she’s finally learnt to be herself By Richard Barber

L

ulu can’t contain her excitement at the news that she’s going to be a gran. There certainly can’t be many grans as glamorous as the effervescent star, who admits she doesn’t feel like a gran – or as if she’s 60 either. Speaking as the news broke she told Yours: “I am so excited and thrilled about the news of becoming a granny. The baby is due in December and it’s definitely something I am looking forward to.” We’ve met for afternoon tea in a smart London hotel. Lulu is looking fabulous. At 60, indeed, she’s never looked better. In her own life she’s certainly come a long way. When I ask her if she can recall a small girl called Marie Lawrie she loses herself in her thoughts and finally comes up with an answer. “Sometimes, yes when I’m laughing – usually with my sister – and it makes my belly ache. That takes me

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back to my childhood in Glasgow and a time when everyone knew me as Marie. But I’ve been Lulu for an awfully long time now. Marie’s the girl who never grew up. She’s forever 14. It’s Lulu who’s the one who’s had to do the growing up.” It’s a telling remark and goes part of the way to understanding this hugely talented, endlessly enduring star who is considerably more complex than her bubbly exterior suggests. An assertive child (by her own admission), she never had a moment’s doubt about her God-given singing ability. “I couldn’t just sing – I could really move people with my singing. My grandfather used to say that I lost myself in my music – and that made people cry.” But, like so many teenage girls before and since, she was desperately insecure, she says, about her appearance. “I was a short, chubby-cheeked, spotty dog,” she laughs. “Actually, I wasn’t spotty when I had my first hit with Shout! at 15. But the

YOURS // EVERY FORTNIGHT

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exclusive ✽ lights and the make-up, the chocolates and the late-night curries played havoc with my skin. It’s why I’ve always looked after my complexion ever since.” It’s also why, many years later, she launched her successful Time Bomb skincare range. Then there were boys. “Everyone from the Beatles and the Stones onwards all went for six-foot tall, blonde stick insects. I didn’t stand a chance. It felt like I was the odd one out. And it’s why, of course, I overcompensated by being so chirpy and outgoing.” Inside, though, she was a raging mass of insecurities. “I was also completely naïve when it came to the opposite sex. There was no such thing as sex education classes at school when I was growing up. And my mother would have died rather than talk about anything like that with me. So I trained myself not to let my ignorance – or my true feelings – show. And that’s something it has taken me many years to get over.” She always assumed she’d be a mum one day. “I was the eldest of four. I thought I’d have loads of kids.” She fell pregnant during her second marriage to hairdresser John Frieda and gave birth to Jordan, now 32. “He was such a good child. He slept all night and ate everything I put in front of him. But I wasn’t coping. I’d wipe his nose a million times a day. I went back to work – too quickly, I realise now – but I wouldn’t be gone

Lulu admits she wasn’t prepared for the responsibility of being a mum when her son John Frieda, pictured, was born

for more than ten minutes before I’d ring my mother, if she was staying, or the nanny to check the baby was all right. It felt like I was anxious all the time. I simply wasn’t prepared for the responsibility of motherhood. I may have been grown-up on the outside but, on the inside, I was still a child. And yet, here I was, suddenly in charge of a baby, this precious little life. It was a shock to the system. I’d had a career for more than half my life and, somewhere along the line, it had stunted my growth, my emotional development. That’s probably why I’ve been married twice and I don’t currently have a relationship.” Still, Jordan turned out fine. Last December, he married – “a fabulous girl called Alanna. She’s blonde, blue-eyed, cheerful and chatty, the daughter I never had. I adore her. And now I’m going to be a gran.” Lulu’s changed; she says so herself. But it’s been a gradual process. She’s been studying meditation and yoga for 25 years now. “And I’m still discovering things about myself.” One of them is to face up to who she really is. “I always used to say that I wasn’t ambitious. It was a dirty word when applied to a woman. But of course I’m ambitious –

and I make no apology for that.” At the moment, much of that ambition is applied to the business of making Time Bomb a success. “I’m totally involved in every aspect of it. I used to let other people make decisions about my career. Not anymore.” She also finds time to help raise the remaining £3 million needed for a new Marie Curie hospice near where she grew up. “My mother died of cancer and so did my friend, Dusty Springfield.” Friends are very important to her as she showed by joining the many celebrities speaking out in support of her friend and former dance teacher Arlene Phillips. Talking about Strictly and Arlene’s new replacement on the show – the much younger Alesha Dixon, Lulu said: “Being overly obsessed with appearance or youth is crazy. It’s part of the business, it always has been. Arlene’s a good friend. I say to her, just you keep on trucking, girl.” And that’s appropriate for Lulu too, who says she’s become much better at pacing herself. “I notice things more. Like my garden or the birds singing or the changing seasons. I go for long walks with my Westie, Clyde, and talk to my friends. When I was young, I was always in such a hurry. Now, I love a train journey when I can read or watch the world go by or just be.” But that could all change when she becomes a gran! // Special offer: Yours readers can get 20 per cent off all Time Bomb products from August 11 to August 25 by ordering any of the Time Bomb range from www. lulusplace.co.uk and entering the code 9201. Lulu’s Time Bomb range is available exclusively on QVC and at www.lulusplace. co.uk And for a really special deal we have two Time Bomb products (worth £30) FREE when you subscribe to Yours. Turn to p92 for more details.

LULU SHARES A SECRET

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PICS: SVEN ARNSTEIN; REX FEATURES

I love spending time with Elton John and his partner David in their house in the south of France. We spend our time sitting at the table, eating and laughing. I love letting out the child inside me 7

31/7/09 16:22:59


Children on the

Home Front Homesickness, lucky escapes, heroism and doodle bugs… your amazing Second World War stories

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early 70 years ago, on September 3, Neville Chamberlain broadcast to the nation that we were at war with Germany. For the next five years, British children were thrown into experiences that would change their lives. It was a childhood that

brought hardship, separation and danger – but excitement and freedom too. Earlier this year we asked Yours readers to send us in their memories. From these we were able to put together: Children on the Home Front – to remember and salute the extraordinary experiences of that time. Here are just a few of your stories…

The evacuees’ stories

“My friend Jean and I ended up with the local coffin maker and his wife. I always liked sewing and when I was asked if I could sew I willingly said I could. Jean was wiser than me and she said she couldn’t sew. I had to sew the pillows that went in the coffins. These were usually white, although on one occasion the Rector died and his coffin was lined in mauve, so the pillow had to be mauve. I was often kept up nearly all night making these pillows. At

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STICKING TOGETHER

Many parents asked for brothers and sisters to be homed together but this wasn’t always possible, causing much heartache

// You can find many more readers memories, combined with original photos, fascinating facts and accounts of life in the Second World War in our Yours special edition: n: Children on the Home Front, now on sale ale in good newsagents. Or you can order it directly from us – turn the page for full details… …

13, the thought of a dead person’s head resting on the pillow I had made gave me nightmares and sleepless nights.” Joan Murton, Isle of Wight “I was an evacuee for just two days in 1940. My mum was eight months pregnant and we were sent to Surrey. People seemed unwilling to take us in and we were the last ones waiting in the town square. It was getting dark when the billeting officer took my mother, younger sister and me to the manor house. We

could feel the lady dy of the manor didn’t want us. The maid tookk us to a room with a double uble bed for the three of us. Next morning we weree told not to use the front door or but to go in and out of the back. ack. When my mum asked for a cup of tea she was told there was plenty enty of water in the tap. No wonder we went home to the air raids in London after two days!” Mrs M Cooper, Billericay, Essex

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Your stories ✽ A TEAM EFFORT

Gardens were transformed into areas of safety by families and neighbours

Life in the Blitz

“When the Germans started dropping magnetic mines two whole streets were wiped out. A neighbour was putting up bean sticks when his wife called him in. He refused to stop until he’d finished the task, much to his wife’s annoyance. Next morning they found that a mine had got its parachute looped over the sticks, which had saved it from going off!” Joyce Lambourne, by email

The start of a great adventure, but children had no idea what was in store for them

“My father was killed on HMS but at last the war was over. Mohawk, b nearing my eighth birthday. At I was nearin party there was all sorts of our street p Where the mums conjured it food. Wher from I’ll never nev know! I can remember eating ice ccream and tinned fruit – it was lovely. When the tables were away we all played games: cleared aw three-legged race, egg and spoon, three-legg even a race for the mums and dads. dusk, the bonfire was lit, Then, at du the flames leaping up the stack of dry wood, licking Hitler’s boots, which were we someone’s old wellies. Everyone cheered. Everyo the fire’s glow diminished As th we were called in for bedtime. As I reached b tthe front door, Mum was standing there and I noticed stan quickly wipe away the tears her qui from her eeyes – for my dad, or the end of the war? “We spent Christmas 1945 with friends who lived on the other side of town and when we walked home on Boxing Day night I quite late o remember everything was lit up as the street llights had been switched on. I said to my mum, ‘Will they ever switch them off again?’ ‘I do hope not, love,’ sshe replied.” Yvonne Hodey (by email)

Life under occupation “I grew up in a small village in Brittany, and in our school the daughter of a collaborator was victimised by the other girls. We were always careful not to say anything anti-German in her hearing, for fear she would report it to her family. Nobody wanted to play with her and sometimes we would whisper in her ear: ‘You stink of the Boche’. Did she ever tell her father or sister?

“After the Liberation we learned that her father had been executed by the Germans. He was in fact a member of the Resistance. Being a garage mechanic, he would look after the Germans’ cars and any documents left in cars he would send to London. Those of us who were so nasty to that young girl felt terrible remorse…” Suzanne Evans, London

Sing as we go

You’ll find snippets from wartime songs throughout Children on the Home Front, because there is nothing that evokes a time as much as music. Dame Vera Lynn recently told Yours, ‘I like to think my songs gave the troops added impetus to fight on for a good cause.’ For reader Maureen Batts, hearing Dame Vera sing: ‘Goodnight children everywhere, your Mummy thinks of you tonight,’ still reminds her how desperately homesick she felt as a young evacuee. This is why we have also produced a special CD of wartime songs, We’ll Meet Again.. see overleaf for details. YOURS // EVERY FORTNIGHT

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PICS; GETTY IMAGES

‘When they sound the h lla last all clear’

“Doodlebugs started coming over on June 13, 1944. One morning Mum, Dad, Jim from over the road and I were standing in the street talking. Suddenly one passed over us from the south. ‘Where do you think it will land, Jim?’ enquired my dad. ‘Brockley or Surrey Docks,’ replied Jim. At the end of our road was a church with a tall spire. The bomb was low, its engine cut out and it began to lose height. Its right wing hit the top of the spire and the bomb turned through 180 degrees. Jim yelled: ‘It’s ****ing coming back!’ We all threw ourselves flat on the pavement, my Mum shouting: ‘Please don’t use language like that in front of Michael!’ The bomb veered left and exploded at the far end of Gran’s road, but she and her house were OK.” Michael Jackman, Emsworth, Hants

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✽ offer

Commemorative book & CD for only £9.99(inc free p&p) Children on the Home Front

O

n September 3, 2009, it will be 70 years since the start of the Second World War. To mark the occasion, Yours magazine has produced a commemorative book: Children on the Home Front, based on the stories and memories of Yours readers. When we asked you to tell us your memories you overwhelmed us with your stories – some harrowing, some amusing, but all extremely evocative of the time. Tales of the evacuation,

the horrors of bombing and the effects of the war on daily life for those children who stayed at home as well as those living abroad and how they coped with invasion. It is a fascinating, deeply moving account of the experiences of Britain’s children between 1939 and 1945. Beautifully illustrated with readers’ own photographs, Children on the Home Front would make a great gift for any generation. On sale August 12, at all good newsagents for £4.99.

We’ll Meet Again

BUY BOT H FOR £9.9 9

A

nd because nothing evokes a time more strongly than the songs we sang, Yours has teamed up with EMI to release We’ll Meet Again – a special double CD of wartime musical music, featuring 50 tunes from some of the biggest stars of the time. On the right is just a taster of what’s included on the CDs. On sale August 11, at all good record stores. // Because this fantastic book and CD are the perfect partners to commemorate the anniversary of the start of the Second World War, we’ve arranged for Yours readers to be able to buy both together for the special price of £9.99 (including p&p). Or buy the book only for £4.99 (see coupon, right).

HOW TO ORDER

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SAVE £1 Vera Lynn – We’ll Meet Again, Aga Leslie ‘Hutch’ Hutchinson – A Ni Nightingale H hi h i l Sang In Berkeley Square, Al Bowlly – Goodnight Sweetheart, Geraldo & His Orchestra – Don’t Sit Under The Apple Tree (With Anyone Else But Me), The Andrews Sisters – Boogie Woogie Bugle Boy, Teddy Foster & His Band – Sentimental Journey, Margaret Whiting – Come Rain Or Come Shine, Noel Coward – The Last Time I Saw Paris, Fred Astaire – Puttin’ On The Ritz, Harry Roy & His Band – You Are My Sunshine, Joe Loss & His Orchestra – In The Mood – plus many others

SEND TO: Yours Book and CD offer, PO Box 136, Coates, Peterborough PE7 2FE Title

PRODUCT Children on the Home Front Book

PRICE

Book + We’ll Meet Again CD FREE p&p UK only (overseas add £2)

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This offer is available (while stocks last) to readers in the UK mainland (overseas should add £2 p&p). Orders will normally be dispatched within 21 days. You will normally be notified if a longer delay is expected. If you are not entirely satisfied, please advise within seven days. Bauer Consumer Media (Publishers of Yours) may also like to contact you by post or phone. Please tick if you do not wish to be contacted by us ■ or carefully selected partner organisations ■ * By entering your email address and/or mobile number you are choosing to receive email and SMS messages from time to time from Yours. We will never pass these details to any other organisation. YBKCP69

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Roy Hudd writes just for you wr The phrase ‘like father, like son’ has a lot of The all-round entertainer and Yours columnist remembers the inimitable Danny La Rue

H

ello folks! A sad little column this time. About a huge hero of mine, the late Danny La Rue OBE. Well, not so sad because whenever I think of Danny he brings a smile to my face. On stage he was the epitome of a star… someone who brought to the theatre glamour, wit and that indefinable something that made you sit back, relax and enjoy his company. When he walked on you knew you were in for some fun. Of course he looked like a million dollars – a lovely face, great legs and an amazing figure clothed in spectacular outfits – but he was much, much more than a beautiful female impersonator. I found a phrase that, I think, summed up what he did well. When people who never saw him in full flight ask me what he was like, I’d explain: “Max Miller in a frock.” He had that same great delivery of non-pc gags; of taking you into his confidence and, above all, the same cheekiness and lovability. At his height, in the Seventies and Eighties, he was thought by some to be a bit rude. I never heard him crack a dirty gag. His jokes were like Max’s – seaside postcard – saucy not ot smutty. They were, when put across in his unique, naively knowing way, irresistibly funny. It did help p that most of his material was written by Barry Cryer and Dick Vosburgh – carefully crafted to fit Dan’s personality and talents. I got to know him well when I was in his revue,, Danny At The Palace. I’d had one of the worst starts to a year anyone in show business could have. Within three months I’d had a flop TV series, a flop radio series and had done a West End d play that ran for just six nights. No one wanted to employ me. My agent was told: “No thanks. He’s

PIC: REX FEATURES, ALPHA PRESS

‘He, more than anyone I’ve ever known, loved being a star and he truly was one’ box office poison.” Then I managed to scrape into a pantomime at Wimbledon. Danny came to see the show and said he wanted me for his new revue (against the advice of all the powers that be he insisted I got the job). He arranged that my name would be up in lights next to his outside the theatre and he restored my confidence and put me back in the game. I owe him a great deal. People do forget what a huge international star he was at

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At the height of his powers, Danny La Rue was the Queen of showbiz

this time. He, more than anyone I’ve ever known, loved being a star and he truly was one. Everyone was his fan, from Rudolph Nureyev to Princess Margaret to Noel Coward – you name them. Whenever anyone famous came to see the show I got an invite to join them and Dan for a drink. He’d sit in the middle of his dressing room on a papier-mâché throne (a prop from one of his pantos) holding court. His funeral was a chance for all of us who loved him to swap our memories and say a communal goodbye. The Catholic church was packed, but Father Peter Stodart, who was due to deliver the homily, was late arriving so Father Christopher Vipers started to ad lib a sermon. A couple of minutes in and Father Peter breathlessly arrived. As he took his place Father Christopher announced to us all, “You see there is a God!” I could hear Danny’s unmistakable chuckle above everyone else’s.

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l-out // Lose weight gain energy // The Yours pull-out // Lose weight gain en ner

Fuel-up food These tasty recipes will keep your energy burning all day long

Super energiser

Baked Bananas En Papillote Serves 4 Calories 112, Fat 4.7g Preheat the oven to 180°C/350°F/Gas Mark 4. Place four bananas on separate squares of foil large enough to fold up into a little tent. Mix together the juice of 2 oranges, 2 tsp each of orange and lemon rind and a few pinches of cinnamon. Divide between the 4 parcels and seal each parcel with a double fold. Place the tents on a baking tray and bake for 20 minutes. Lift the tents onto the plates and let everyone unwrap them. Serve with natural yogurt and a few toasted slivered almonds on the side.

Aromatic Summer Salmon with Purple Grape & Mango Salsa Steaming is an easy and healthy way to cook fish as it preserves the essential Omega-3 fats and makes for a very light and fresh-tasting meal Serves 2 Calories 292, Fat 7g For the salsa • 1 bunch spring onions, trimmed but including some of the green part • 1 clove garlic, peeled and finely chopped • 1 tbsp fresh ginger, grated • 1 mango, cubed • 1 nectarine, cubed (optional) • Small bunch purple grapes, halved

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• 1 handful coriander, chopped • 1 handful mint, chopped • Mixed flax and sesame seeds, toasted • 2 tbsp red grape juice • Generous squeeze lemon juice • Mixed salad leaves to serve For the fish • 2 x 100g fillets salmon • Sea salt & freshly ground black pepper • 1 lemon • 2 spring onions • Few shavings of fresh ginger 1 Set up a steamer and put the water on to boil. Mix all the salsa ingredients together in a bowl, season to taste and

then set aside for the flavours to develop while the salmon is cooking. 2 Rinse the salmon under cold running water and pat dry with kitchen paper. Season the fish and a good squeeze of lemon juice. 3 On two sheets of lightly oiled kitchen foil, make a bed of spring onion and ginger and lay the salmon on top. Loosely crimp and seal the foil and then place both parcels in the steamer tray. Steam for approximately 15 minutes. 4 Arrange the salad leaves on two plates. Heap a good serving of the salsa in the middle and top with the hot, steamed aromatic salmon.

YOURS // EVERY FORTNIGHT

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27/7/09 10:18:50


Win

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he new Durex Play O is a pleasureenhancing gel designed to bring added satisfaction to your love life. Created by the women at Durex, Play O uses a unique combination of ingredients designed to be pleasure enhancing, increasing sexual desire. With a little help from Play O they can recapture the full sensual joy of youthful lovemaking. Also, why not try one of the soothing Durex Play Massage range? You will be pleasantly surprised by the exciting choice of gels, mousses and melts. The time-honoured practice of massage helps to de-stress young and old alike. When it is done well, it can be wonderfully relaxing and Durex provides online massage tips for coupless who wish to learn – or enhance – this valuable skill. To celebrate the launch of this fantastic product, Durex is giving away goodie bags containing Play O gel, the full range of its massage gels and mousses along with other great Durex products. The lucky winners can look forward to a stimulating treat for the whole body with the Durex range of trusted products. // To be in with a chance to win, just answer this simple question: What is the new Durex pleasure enhancing gel called? a) Play Z b) Play A c) Play O

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Goodies to win

We’ve got six fabulous prizes up for grabs – so take your pick!

5 Black & Decker® Pivot Plus Stick Vac

WORTH The new Black & Decker 12V Pivot Plus Stick Vac provides a winning formulae of cordless and easy handEACH held cleaning. The Pivot Plus clicks into four positions to offer 240° of cleaning reach to get into awkward areas without having to bend and twist. // Not a winner? Call 01753 567055 or visit www. blackanddecker.eu

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Cele Celebrity chef Phil Vickery and Acriflex Cooling Burns Gel Ge have launched a website providing invaluable kitchen pro safety saf advice. Win one of his bestselling cookery books Britain: The Cookbook se plus three winners receive a BBQ set. // Not a winner? Available from all good chemists or visit www.burnsadvice.co.uk

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27 Healthspan Pycnogenol® supplement packs

Healthspan Pycnogenol® is a natural pine bark extract that enhances micro-circulation. With 60 tablets in a pack, it could help to protect the ageing brain by keeping blood vessels and WORTH cells healthy. // Not a winner? call 0800 7312377 or EACH www.healthspan.co.uk

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50 Ei Electronics fire alarms With the extra hours of sunlight that summer brings, many of us treat this as a time to get on with DIY projects. But don’t forget while you’re painting walls and putting up plaster board to protect your valuables with a smoke alarm. Ei Electronics is giving 50 lucky winners the chance to win a fire alarm from their new Decorative Range based on a concept of ‘Safety with Design’, keeping your home protected and stylish. // Not a winner? Call 0870 758400 or visit www.eielectronics.com

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John Crane Ltd brings you this wonderful picnic and ice cream set in time for summer with the grandkids. // Not a winner? Write to Treasure Island Toys, 3 Morley Street, Brighton BN2 9RA or visit www. treasureislandtoys.co.uk

5 Kinnaird Ireland clothing vouchers Kinnaird Ireland, specialising in luxury loungewear, dressing gowns and nightwear unveil their new winter range. Treat yourself for those cold winter months ahead. There’s five £75 loungewear vouchers to spend online so you can stay toasty during the cold spells. // Not a winner? Call 01484 309709 or visit www.kinnairdireland.co.uk

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Either enter by post: Website: to enter for free, go to www.yours.co.uk Closing date: HOW TO ENTER: (fill in the coupon on page 90) Yours magazine section to give your details August 28, 2009 Giveaways are governed by the same rules as Yours competitions (see page 90) YOURS // EVERY FORTNIGHT

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23/7/09 15:35:29


reader fiction ✽

Fortnightly page turner…

The burden of proof

by Jan Wright

How can Mary convince the Chief Inspector her dark suspicions are worth investigating?

M

“Oh, come off it – there’s no way Nathan would want to do away with that lovely wife of his,” Sarah remonstrated. Mary had to agree. Perhaps George was right – she did read too much fiction.

A

s the weeks went by, Mary suppressed the mad idea that people in her town were poisoning each other. Then two things happened. First, she heard Colin Frey was moving to Spain with Debbie. “That girl’s 25 years younger than him and only after his money,” muttered Mrs Evans, as she returned a Barbara Cartland. “My nephew works for the insurance broker in the high street – he says Colin had his wife very well insured!” Secondly, her sister rang in a state of excitement. “Nathan Turner wasn’t trying

to poison his wife. He had a wealthy great-uncle living in an expensive care home. Nathan was his only beneficiary and guess who visited the old boy just hours before he died?” “Are you sure?” Mary asked. “I heard it from someone who works at the home. Not that anyone suspects foul play, of course,” Sarah replied. “I didn’t think much of your poisoning theory when you first mentioned it, but I think perhaps you should talk to George about this.” The next day, Mary took The Little Book of Poisons to the park at lunchtime and read it over her cheese and pickle sandwiches. Continued It fell YOURS // EVERY FORTNIGHT

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ILLUSTRATION: JEFF PARKER

ary wasn’t sure what to do when she first suspected murder. She couldn’t prove that Colin Frey killed his wife, but no one else knew he’d borrowed that book from the library – until she told her sister, Sarah. “What does George say?” Sarah asked. “The mighty Chief Inspector wouldn’t be interested in his wife’s theories. He thinks that as I’m a librarian I read too much fiction and don’t live in the real world.” “I don’t know why you stay with him, Mary. He’s married to his work, not you,” Sarah said dismissively. But Mary couldn’t get Alice Frey’s death out of her mind. The woman had been bedridden for a long time, but just because people thought she was a hypochondriac didn’t mean she was faking illness. And just because Colin Frey had slipped a copy of The Little Book of Poisons between a Danielle Steel and a Dick Francis didn’t mean he’d poisoned his wife. Mary hadn’t given it a thought at the time, but now Alice was dead and there were rumours flying around about Colin and his secretary Debbie, she wished she could talk to George the way she used to when he was just a bobby on the beat. But the higher George went up the ladder of promotion, the more remote he had become. Sarah’s unkind comment hadn’t been far off the mark. The next day at work, Mary checked to see if The Little Book of Poisons was back on the shelf. It wasn’t, and she found it was out on loan to Nathan Turner. “I suppose it could be innocent,” Mary said to Sarah that evening. “But don’t you think it’s strange that Nathan works in the same office as Colin Frey?”

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reader fiction ✽ open at page 26, which proved mindnumbingly dull until the last paragraph, which happened to mention that a particularly fatal concoction was virtually undetectable unless you knew it had been taken.

I

t was two days before she managed to persuade George to listen to her. She showed him a list of everyone who had ever borrowed the book, together with notes on what she knew about the deaths. “It only took me an hour on the internet to find two ways of buying the poison and the symptoms if it was taken,” she explained over dinner. George carried on eating. He wasn’t impressed. “Life isn’t like one of your daft detective thrillers where people get bumped off every other chapter,” he scoffed. “I’ve real criminals to deal with, without you trying to invent more.” “But Colin Frey had insured his wife for half a million! And the policy was only taken out after Debbie started working for him. And Nathan had been told that all his uncle’s money would be gone in two years if the old man stayed in that care home. Colin and Nathan worked in the same office, they both borrowed the same book on poisons. Don’t you find that suspicious, George?” George turned the TV on. Mary was bitterly hurt. Her sister was right, she should have left him years ago. Their relationship was an empty shell.

T

he next morning, Mary noticed her copious notes had disappeared. No doubt George had shredded them. She hardly saw him for the next few weeks. He worked late and was even less communicative than ever. Deciding she could not carry on like this, Mary took her courage in both hands and began to make drastic plans to change her life. Then one evening, George rushed in, gave her a hug and poured them both a large drink. It was

almost like old times, as they sat in front of the fire together and George told her about his latest case. “I couldn’t tell you all this before,” he explained. “I had to get the proof first and that has taken some time.” “Nathan Turner’s uncle was poisoned,” he confirmed. “Thanks to you, I was able to arrange a post mortem before the funeral. Frey’s wife was cremated so that wasn’t so easy to prove, but your investigative work came in useful. We’ve linked Frey’s credit card with the purchase of the poison on the internet.” Mary was puzzled. “What made you look into it after you’d dismissed my theory out of hand?” “Sorry for being rude, but it did sound far-fetched. After you’d gone to bed, I noticed Dr Jones was on the list of borrowers. Two years ago, his receptionist died in suspicious circumstances. The girl was pregnant and we were sure the baby was his, but we couldn’t find a cause of death. That was until you gave me the vital clue.” “And that was enough to go on?” George nodded. “I’ve had to work hard, but last night I got the results of the tests. I didn’t want to arrest the other two and risk alerting Jones, but tonight all three men are locked up.” “Of course! The doctor plays golf with Colin Frey,” Mary exclaimed. “Why didn’tt I think of that?” “Hey, you did just fine,” George said, smiling warmly at her. Then he did something he hadn’t done for many years – he gave her a long kiss and suggested they had an early night! After that evening, he was a changed man and even whisked his wife off to Paris to celebrate their 35th wedding anniversary in style. In fact, George proved to be such a devoted husband that Mary soon abandoned her drastic plan to change her life – but of course she knew exactly where that book was in the library, should he ever slip back into his neglectful old ways!

JJan Wrig ri ht lives in Cowes on th e Is lle of Wight and ha T U O s AB R inspir irational views of Th e U O Solen nt from her office R O - but says she leaves the AUTH sailing mainly to her husb and. Jan has been writin i g short stories sin ce the Nineties and ha s ha d m or e than 100 published.

BOOKSHELF The Yours selection of what we like this fortnight… The Very Thought of You u by Rosie Alison

In brief: Eight-yearold Anna is evacuated on the brink of WW2 to a large Yorkshire estate and finds herself witness to a love affair. FOR YOU Read it if… you’re after a thought-provoking book on the reality of life in hard times.. // We have five copies (worth h £12.99 £12 99 each) to give away. To enter, see below.

EXTRA RA A

Beachcombing B by Maggie Dana

EXTRA RA A

FOR YOU

In brief: Jillian Hunter is fiercely independent, but becomes reunited with an old flame. Read Rea it if… you empathise with the emp middle-aged single mid women’s need for love. wom // We W have ha five copies (worth ((wo £7.99 each) to give away. awa To enter, see below.

Super Gra Granny

by Sally Wendkos Olds In brief: Captivate your grandkids with 75 creative and cool projects for all ages, divided into budgets, energy levels and varied interests. Read it for… great tips onn holiday time-fillers. // We have three copies (worth £9.99 each) to give away. To enter, see below.

To enter send a postcard with name, ame address and choice of title to: Sheena Correa, Issue 69 Bookshelf Giveaway at the address on Meeting Place. The first entries for each book drawn after August 28, 2009 receive a copy. If you do not wish to be contacted in the future by Yours Magazine please write ‘No Further Contact’ clearly on the postcard. YOURS // EVERY FORTNIGHT

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EXTRA RA A

FOR YOU

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Yours magazine #69  

Yours magazine Issue 69 brings you news and views on issues that matter to you from the UK's favourite magazine for women in their prime

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