New Year – New Me (Sort of…)

So it’s 2023. I can hardly contain my excitement because this year most of the books and a short story I wrote in lockdown will be published!

But first things first. And the fist of those books is Teenage Kicks. I’m writing this in the name of Jax Ward because this is my first adventure into romantic comedy/tragedy. The brilliant Spellbound Books will publish this novel on 8th March 2023.

Set in the Northern Quarter of Manchester around the iconic Castle pub, Teenage Kicks spans the Manchester punk scene in 1978 to today as Kaye Macey and her friend Janet search for Kaye’s lead-singer sister, Stella, but find much, much more.

Kaye and Janet have seen it all. They’ve partied with the best of them and fallen in and out of love with unsuitable men. But one thing is missing. Stella. Kaye’s sister left in the late seventies, and their mother, Imelda, forbade Kaye to look for her. But now Imelda has gone.

The women search across the city for each member of the punk band Stella sang with. They toast dead pop stars, travel in a camper van called Mavis channelling Debby Harry and Kate Bush, and search for lasting love. But both of them know this could be their Last Hurrah and want to go out with a bang. Will they find Stella? Will they find love? Will they find out who was really at the Sex Pistols gig at the Manchester Free Trade Hall in 1976?

Teenage Kicks is my love letter to Manchester. I’ve often talked about how much I love my home city. When I lived in Cyprus I dreamt about The Arndale every single night! Janet and Kaye are the epitome of Manchester’s real women, and reminiscent of my aunties on my dad’s side. But there is a softer, sentimental side to them.

I really cannot wait to see this book out there and find out what readers think of Kaye and Janet – I’m expecting mixed reactions…