I’m delighted to one of the bloggers kicking off the blog blitz for Thalidomide Kid by Kate Rigby, with an extract and giveaway, courtesy of Rachel’s Random Resources.
Before I share the extract, here’s the book info…..
Celia Burkett is the new girl at the local primary school, and the daughter of the deputy head at the local comprehensive where she is bound the following September. With few friends, Celia soon becomes fascinated by ‘the boy with no arms’.
The story of a blossoming romance and sexual awakening between a lonely girl and a disabled boy, and their struggle against adversity and prejudice as they pass from primary to secondary school in 1970s Cirencester. The story deals with themes and issues that are timeless.
Purchase Links ~ Amazon UK | Amazon US | Amazon UK (paperback)
Fairground scene when still at primary school
And it’s Thalidomide Kid from Planet Thalidomide where all the crooked kids live. Thalidomide Kid, coming up to the side shows at the Mop Fair where you aim hoops over things in the middle to see if you can win them, and he’s stopping at this stall, Thalidomide Kid, looking at all the bright things in the middle and he’s going to get a free go, the man in the middle is giving him a free go, and Thalidomide Kid’s hoops land on the sticky brown earth in the moat bit, miles from the prizes which are like castles. And Thalidomide Kid’s quoits never land where he wants them to land at school either. And it’s Thalidomide Kid, who should have a side show all of his own, like at the circus where you see dwarves making a king’s ransom. See this, Thalidomide Kid – your mamma took something that shrivelled up your arms …
He stopped next by the candy floss stall.
“Some candy floss, please,” he said.
The candy floss man stared at him like he hadn’t got any arms, which of course he hadn’t, but that didn’t mean he couldn’t hold a stick of candy floss. The man chewed while he dipped the stick into the floss maker, twirling it every so often as the floss grew, like a ball of wool. The candy floss man stopped chewing as he handed over the cloud of frothy pink, staring out of curiosity or amazement or both; wondering, perhaps, how the simple act of taking and eating some candy floss might be achieved. Daryl walked away, oblivious to such attention, using his fingers to tear off tufts of pink which melted to nothing in his mouth.
He bumped into his sister, Sherrie, and her mate. They pulled more clumps off his candy floss. He knocked about with them for a while. There was the smell of hot dogs and oil and grease from the rides. The sound of screams and the thump of the rides. The constant motion of people and thousands of bulbs, which would all be lit up in an hour or two.
And it’s Thalidomide Kid, coming up on the rear …
And now he was standing on the side by the bumper cars with his sister Sherrie who was twelve and when Sherrie opened her mouth there was this great metal brace across her teeth, so she tried to keep her lips shut. They were a right pair, her with her brace, him with his funny hands.
And it’s Thalidomide Kid and Brace Kid standing watching the zizz and blue crackle above the Dodgem cars as they crash and bump one another …
Then a horn sounded and the cars slowed to a stop while kids rushed in from the side to grab an empty car.
“Come on, Sherrie – this one here.”
Sherrie got in the blue bumper car, the last one left, and they hooted into action, the fairground man riding on the back of each car as he collected the fares. The Dodgem man was showing off his sense of balance; Daryl knew he had it too, that expert skill, that balancing with no arms, without falling out, while Sherrie did a 360-degree rotation in their Dodgem, biffing all in her wake. Off she went, now stuck in a pile-up in the middle, now bashing her way through, hot on the tail of a yellow car whose bumper she smashed, spinning it round 180-degrees. It was that dentist’s girl at the wheel, the one whose old man had made Sherrie’s mouth so ugly.
“Geddum,” Sherrie snarled, baring the metal mess that was her teeth, giving the yellow car what for.
“Hey, watch it.” Thalidomide Kid to the rescue. “Her dad might yank your teeth out next time.”
Next to the dentist’s girl was Celia Burkett, the new girl who got laughed at by the Janes because she said her ‘A’s funny, and that was another thing that got picked on, a funny accent because it was different, like no arms was different, or being a half-caste was different, or being a Fatty Arbuckle. Or maybe Celia Burkett got picked on just because she was the new girl. But now she had a friend, Vicky Hawthorne, who she giggled with and it was making the Dodgem cars a lot of fun. Just the way she was looking at Thalidomide Kid. At his face.
Before they knew it, the horn was going and their car had run out of power, Sherrie’s mad turning of the wheel now in vain. “Let’s go again, Sherrie.” But then he saw Vicky Hawthorne and Celia Burkett climbing out of their yellow car. “The Big Wheel,” Vicky Hawthorne said. “Come on, Celia!”
And it’s Thalidomide Kid, getting out of his car and leaving Sherrie to have her second go alone because he is following the girls from the other Form 4 class to the Big Wheel and not caring if he’s about to act Thicky Way, like in the rhyme …
To win 1 x signed copy of Thalidomide Kid please click the Rafflecopter link.
*Terms and Conditions –Please enter using the Rafflecopter box below. The winner will be selected at random via Rafflecopter from all valid entries and will be notified by Twitter and/or email. If no response is received within 7 days then I reserve the right to select an alternative winner. Open to all entrants aged 18 or over. Any personal data given as part of the competition entry is used for this purpose only and will not be shared with third parties, with the exception of the winners’ information. This will passed to the giveaway organiser and used only for fulfilment of the prize, after which time I will delete the data. I am not responsible for despatch or delivery of the prize.
About the Author
Kate Rigby was born near Liverpool and now lives in the south west of England. She’s been writing for nearly forty years. She has been traditionally published, small press published and indie published. She realized her unhip credentials were mounting so she decided to write about it. Little Guide to Unhip was first published in 2010 and has since been updated. However she’s not completely unhip. Her punk novel, Fall Of The Flamingo Circus was published by Allison & Busby (1990) and by Villard (American hardback 1990). Skrev Press published her novels Seaview Terrace (2003) Sucka!(2004) and Break Point (2006) and other shorter work has appeared in Skrev’s magazines.
Thalidomide Kid was published by Bewrite Books (2007).
Her novel Savage To Savvy was an Amazon Breakthrough Novel Award (ABNA) Quarter-Finalist in 2012.
She has had other short stories published and shortlisted including Hard Workers and Headboards, first published in The Diva Book of Short Stories, in an erotic anthology published by Pfoxmoor Publishing and more recently in an anthology of Awkward Sexcapades by Beating Windward Press.
She also received a Southern Arts bursary for her novel Where A Shadow Played (now re-Kindled as Did You Whisper Back?).
She has re-Kindled her backlist and is gradually getting her titles (back) into paperback
More information can be found at her website: http://kjrbooks.yolasite.com/
Or her blog: http://bubbitybooks.blogspot.co.uk/