‘Good mother or bad…who decides?’
Firstly I wish to apologise to both the author, Melissa Hill, and to Harper Collins Ireland as this post was supposed to be published yesterday, April 19th, to celebrate the paperback publication of Keep You Safe in the UK and Ireland.
Due to a family situation I was offline for a few days, so I am delighted to be back today to bring you all an Extract of the book to whet your appetites and I also have ONE copy up for grabs for ONE very lucky winner.
Described as an ‘addictive, compelling and thought-provoking read’
ENTRY IS VERY SIMPLE……Read on to find out more…
Widowed nurse Kate and mummy blogger Madeleine couldn’t be more different in their approaches to parenting.
Kate knows her husband’s death has made her more protective of her daughter, but she’s not going to apologise for it.
Madeleine feels there’s no such thing as a perfect mother and while her parenting style may be controversial – particularly her decision not to vaccinate her kids – she knows everyone’s just doing their best.
But when Madeleine makes a fateful decision that upends her own family, and has devastating consequences for Kate, suddenly the world is lining up to vilify her. Now she must defend every parental choice she’s ever made…
Why is she accused of being a terrible mother when all she did was try to keep her children safe?
Extract – Chapter One (The opening pages)
The bell rang out and on cue they started to approach all at once,
like a stampeding herd.
Standing back to let the first wave pass while shivering in
late March wind and cold, I pulled my gloved hands out of my
pockets and tugged my woolly hat a bit more firmly down over
my ears, tucking my wispy dark hair underneath it. Another blast
of wind hit me in the face, turning my cheeks an even brighter
shade of pink.
I knew that I could just stay in my car and keep warm while
waiting for my five-year-old, Rosie, to emerge from Junior Infants
class at Applewood Primary. However, she and I have a ritual of
sorts and the typically inclement Irish weather wasn’t going to
stand in the way of it.
Each and every day after school, I wait for Rosie just outside
the school building, a bit down the front path by the main hall.
During the more temperate months we walk the half-mile home
together to our two-bed cottage in Knockroe, a small satellite
town about forty minutes’ drive from Dublin.
I have never failed to meet Rosie in our chosen spot since
she started school seven months ago. I was determined to never
let her exit the class and not have me there – at least until my
daughter told me that she wanted to walk home by herself or
with friends. I wasn’t one of those helicopter parents or anything
like that, but, come hell or high water, I would make sure I was
there – especially since Rosie was still having nightmares about
that one time after preschool. The day when no one was waiting.
Hard to believe that fateful day was almost two years ago – it
still felt like only yesterday. A chill worked its way up my spine
– one that this time wasn’t triggered by the cold.
In her preschool days, my husband Greg had been the one
responsible for picking up Rosie. Working from home as a freelance
software designer, it was he who had more flexibility and
usually had the opportunity to step away from the office he kept
in the spare bedroom, and head over to the preschool to pick up
our daughter. Since I work as a nurse at a clinic in a nearby town,
I generally keep more irregular hours.
I had long been thankful that my husband could play such an
active role in Rosie’s childhood, especially while my own commitments
prevented me from being around as much as I would
My commitments are different these days
Because there had been one time when Greg couldn’t make it
to the preschool at the allotted time of 12.45 to pick Rosie up.
Not because he didn’t want to, had forgotten or neglected to pay
attention to the time, but because he had collapsed in our kitchen
earlier that morning while making himself a cup of tea.
Sudden Adult Death Syndrome had ended my beloved husband’s
life in seconds; he likely didn’t even realise what was
I wasn’t aware that I’d been made a widow when the preschool
teacher called me at work that afternoon to say that they couldn’t
get in touch with Greg at home. That terrible realisation didn’t
come until later.
Calling our home phone as well as Greg’s mobile, trying to
figure out what was going on, I remember feeling irritated that
Rosie and her teacher had been left waiting. I was annoyed at
Greg and wondered where he was, especially since I couldn’t get
an answer on any phone. So I told my supervisor at the clinic that
I needed to head out; pick up my child in Knockroe, drop her
home to her dad and would then come back to finish my shift.
It was only after I had sped the short distance there, apologised
to the preschool teacher and hustled my daughter back to the
house, that I realised my life was forever changed. If I could go
back to that moment so I could enter the kitchen first in order
to prevent Rosie from finding her father immobile on the floor,
As it was, there was no changing the past, but I would do my
damnedest to make sure that I was always there at the end of the
school day so that she didn’t fear the same thing happening to
me. She’d already had a tough enough time of it for a five-and-a-half-year-old.
My daughter was everything to me – all that I had these days.
USA TODAY & International #1 bestselling author Melissa Hill lives in Co Wicklow with her husband and daughter. Her latest novel KEEP YOU SAFE is out now.
Her books have been translated into 25 languages and are regular chart-toppers in Ireland and internationally.
SOMETHING FROM TIFFANY’S (aka A GIFT FROM TIFFANY’S) became one of Italy’s 2011 Top Ten bestselling books, selling over 600,00 copies in translation, and THE CHARM BRACELET was a USA Today bestseller.
A Hallmark movie adaptation of A GIFT TO REMEMBER was released in 2017, and SOMETHING FROM TIFFANY’S is currently in development as a major Hollywood movie.
Website ~ http://www.melissahill.ie/
Twitter ~ @melissahillbks
Facebook ~ facebook.com/melissahillbooks