A Spirited Girl on Cornish Shores (A Little Hotel in Cornwall Book 2)
It looks like a perfect Cornish autumn, with aspiring novelist Maisie Clark still finding inspiration as a maid at the historic Penmarrow Hotel.
Between the staff of quirky co-workers, glamorous and unusual guests, and her growing friendship with the charming but mysterious Sidney Daniels, Maisie is living out adventures instead of just penning them in the pages of her would-be novel’s growing number of chapters.
And then there’s the slight problem of keeping the balance between friendship and ‘something more’ with Sidney, who’s helping introduce her to the village’s version of a Cornish Halloween, and has recently taken an interest in Maisie’s secret that may change things between them. But even Maisie’s imagination can’t conjure the unusual event this Halloween brings to the Penmarrow. An eccentric earl has chosen this site to host his lavish birthday celebration that includes a pretty (and perceptive) young psychic whose predictions seem to have everyone on edge — and, to Maisie’s delight, the elusive novelist Alistair Davies is rumored to be part of the guest list! But with the earl’s bickering relatives and illustrious friends on hand— and more than one ghost of the past waiting to be revealed — it’s anyone’s guess what the festivities will bring before the party is over.
Will the psychic foretell doom for the earl’s gathering—and is her ‘gift’ as genuine as it seems? Will Maisie finally meet her favorite author face to face? And, more importantly, what about the romantic sparks that fly between Maisie and Sidney?
Author Bio – Laura Briggs is the author of several feel-good romance reads, including the Top 100 Amazon UK seller ‘A Wedding in Cornwall’. She has a fondness for vintage style dresses (especially ones with polka dots), and reads everything from Jane Austen to modern day mysteries. When she’s not writing, she enjoys spending time with family and friends, caring for her pets, gardening, and seeing the occasional movie or play.
Social Media Links –
Facebook page: https://www.facebook.com/authorlaurabriggs/
Extract from A Spirited Girl on Cornish Shores:
Thanks so much, Sean for letting me share with your readers about my newest book! This is the sequel to my summer novella A Little Hotel in Cornwall. The heroine, Maisie Clark, is an aspiring author from America who ends up working at the seaside hotel Penmarrow in Cornwall. In the following scene, Maisie has joined the local festivities for a traditional style Cornish Halloween party.
The old barn was only a short distance from town, the big blaze outside ringed by carved turnips, whose weird faces were aglow from candles lit within. Big sheaths of wheat stalks and dry husks, garlands of bright red apples, and a few pirate flags decorated the old stone walls made cheery by the light of electric lanterns. The band was playing lively folk tunes, and plenty of people here knew the steps to a folk dance of some kind that looked too complicated for me to try out of sheer curiosity.
“Someone must be making a good bit of applesauce with all these, come tomorrow,” commented a woman I recognized from the local bakery, and who was wearing a pirate’s hat. I saw the grocer here in an eye patch and scarf, a young postal worker whom I recognized only by the voice from beneath a werewolf mask, and there were others from the Penmarrow’s staff, including Gomez chatting up a very pretty group of girls wearing glittery felt or paper masks like mine. Norman, of course, was sitting in a dark corner with a sour expression on his face as he watched the dance.
“It’s exciting here, isn’t it?” said my coworker Molly as she joined me, tucking her hands in the pockets of her jumper. “Are you going to dance? The band’s a bit loud, and Jerry’s too fond of the rock riffs in solos for the sake of the old folks, but they still play a very good tune.”
“I’m not sure that I’m ready for it yet,” I said.
Parties like this one were new to me, since I hadn’t grown up in the country — and hadn’t been the girl who was invited very many times to the parties held in condemned city buildings or abandoned houses. This was cheerier and far more atmospheric than those high school mischief gatherings, although the essence of All Hallows Eve lingered in its smoke, like a weird, palpable mist in the shadows that bided its time to roll in, as my imagination saw it. It gave me a little shiver, though entirely a fantasy-based one. There was no trouble or superstition brewing here, probably.
“I could teach you,” said Molly. “It’s always a good way to meet the local boys. Some of them are quite keen on the old ways, especially if there’s a good excuse to light some torches, do something silly, have a bit of ale — you know how they are. But most are really interested in football and rugby.”
“And surfing?” I caught a glimpse of Sidney across the room in the crowd.
“That’s to the northeast, really. Newquay’s lot,” said Molly. “Lots of people here like swimming and boats. I like the water myself. Sometimes I go out on a boat … my friends Ricky and Terrence once took me up the coast to Newquay and we had tea at the big hotel. They thought it was a proper joke — me working at the hotel here and all. You know, Terrence is single,” she added, shyly. “He’s not such a bad lad … and he’s decent-looking also.”
“Is he?” I answered, politely. “He probably has lots of interested admirers.” Across the way, Sidney caught my eye for a moment, a smile of recognition on his face. I couldn’t see what kind of paper mask he was wearing, since it was pushed up past his forehead.
“I’ll introduce you, if you like,” offered Molly. “He’s got very big muscles, Terrence. He worked at a quarry all this past summer.”
“Muscles aren’t that important, really,” I answered. Sidney’s carelessly-rolled shirtsleeves outlined a pair of well-toned arms. I was definitely thinking opposite thoughts from what I was saying to Molly at this moment.
“So are you interested?” When that question collided with my thoughts, I skidded back to the present.
“In what? Your friend?” Not Sidney, right? I rewound Molly’s remarks in my head. “I … don’t know. I still think it’s a little soon for me to be dating anybody.”