Today the Saturday Girls appears on the shelves.
My niece went to her local Sainsbury’s first thing this morning and sent me this photograph.
People sent messages and cards. I met friends for coffee and drinks. My publisher, Bonnier Zaffre sent an enormous bunch of flowers.
I dropped into Crouch End Waterstone’s and discussed a future event there. Date to be confirmed. A fancy meal at our neighbourhood Italian restaurant rounded off a perfect day.
But before that I was asked to answer some questions for a book website. One of the questions was if the book had a theme song, what would it be? And I thought it would have to be Green Onions by Booker T and the MGs. Perhaps not a song, to be precise, but oh, such a cool piece of music.
Four days to go until The Saturday Girls appears on the shelves! Who would have believed it? 23 August 2018 – a date for your diary. It started life as Beyond the Beehive, but now under the watchful eye of the team at Bonnier Zaffre it has become The Saturday Girls.
When I began writing the stories of Linda and Sandra I was really writing notes on what it was like to be a mod girl in Chelmsford in the Sixties, a piece of history that is often overlooked. The book describes life in the early Sixties, when rationing had finished but eggs were still considered a luxury, when the war was over but the H bomb was a threat hanging over all of us, when National Service was in its last days and teenagers had just been invented, from the point of view of mods. Mods who had the style, the scooters and … the music.
We had suffered with Radio Luxembourg under the blankets, and on TV we had groaned our way through Juke Box Jury with its old fogey panellists who didn’t understand music or youth or even life.
Of course there had been the 6:5 Special on BBC, and Oh Boy on ITV but we wanted more, though we didn’t quite know what. And then Ready Steady Go! burst onto our screens on Friday nights. Ready Steady Go! had it all – mods, music, fashion, dancing.
Ohh, just listen to Otis Redding, Eric Burdon and Chris Farlowe singing Shake.
It all fed into the world that became The Saturday Girls. I hope you buy it. I hope even more that you enjoy it.