I’m excited to share an extract from The Piper and The Fairy with you today. It’s the first in a trilogy of fantasy/folklore/mystery novels in which Carole Bulewski explores how the supernatural can creep into the most mundane of situations. The Water of Life and The Little God of Queen’s Park are the concluding titles, available soon, from Dream’s Edge Publishing, to whom Carole signed in 2020.
Before we get to the extract, here’s what the book is about…
There are only two important people in Iris Low’s life – Tom, a musician, and Matilda, Iris’s childhood friend, and a practising Wiccan.
When Tom disappears, Iris turns to a therapist to help her discover what has happened to him in the hope the therapist may unlock parts of her memory she is not ready to confront.
What is it about Tom’s disappearance that Iris has buried deep in her mind, and will therapy help to dig up the memories, or will Iris have to turn to magic to find out?
Will we discover what happened to Tom, the Piper, a sixties influenced musician who helps to reignite Iris’s creativity. Will we discover the secret, hidden in the mind of the Fairy in the trees?
The Piper and the Fairy explores obsession, childhood friendships, and alternative realities in a magically woven story and an intricate plot, that will keep you guessing until the final scene.
I remember it in minute detail, this night when I met Tom. When he disappeared, I replayed the sequence of events in my head time and again, and I’m pretty sure it happened just as I’m going to describe it now. To this day, whenever I reconstruct the events in my head, Tom’s voice quickly invades my mind and he starts telling me his version of the story – which, in all fairness, is pretty similar to my own except for a few minor details.
The person I had become didn’t have much in common with the passionate sixteen-year-old who had moved to London in the hope of becoming an artist, but there was still a part of me that longed for something more than a roof over my head and a pay cheque at the end of the month. It had been a particularly boring day at the office – nothing horrible, just the slow death you experience day after day when you’re not doing what you’re supposed to do with your life. It was Friday night and I couldn’t face going home. I decided to go out in search of people instead. That night, I just felt like having a drink, seeing new faces and forgetting myself a little – not too much though, as I was unable to let go completely and I would need to get home somehow, at some point. Letting go in society was not my forte and it had never been, although in a way I was far more experienced on that level than most, because from a very young age I had been able to invest myself whole, body and mind, into sculpting – this was a different kind of letting go, of course. I opted for Camden because there would always be some gig to appeal to me. I didn’t know much about music, just how it made me feel while listening to it, and live music awoke in me certain feelings that were not entirely dissimilar to those I had experienced when I was a sculptor – I hadn’t produced anything in so long that I didn’t dare to call myself a sculptor any more. After walking around for a while, I had finally settled for a pub chosen only on account of its improbably large size and the fact that I would go unnoticed in such a place. Coming from the bar, I could hear the sounds of a band whose name I wouldn’t remember by the time I got home –something to please the younger crowds. When suddenly I noticed some people closer to my own age and dressed in Sixties outfits walking into a much smaller pub. I decided to follow them, on account of the freak element and because the sort of gig they were likely to attend could only be something linked to the Sixties – pop or underground, I didn’t mind which. In fact, I seem to recall that I felt compelled to follow them, much like the children of Hamelin following the Pied Piper – except that there seemed to be no Pied Piper in sight.
About the Author
Born and raised in the south of France, Carole Bulewski moved to the UK at the end of the second Millennium, eventually settling down in London after a few years in the South West of England, a place that has inspired her many a supernatural story since – writing first in her native French, but now almost exclusively in the English language.
Although writing has always been Carole’s preferred means of expressing herself, having written her first fairy tale at the tender age of seven, music in one form or another plays an important part in her life, and consequently in her writing. For not only do musicians make great characters in supernatural and horror stories, but they also have the ability to conjure up a parallel universe where different rules apply.