Related to: 'Alley Urchin'

Author of the amazing One Week Girlfriend series

Behind the scenes with Monica Murphy

We love Drew and Fable’s story and the evolution of their romance in One Week Girlfriend and Second Chance Boyfriend. When did their story begin to take shape for you? Thank you! I love Drew + Fable too. The story began to actually take shape back in 2009 ― well, Fable took shape. I tried my hand at a YA idea with the main character named Fable Maguire. It didn’t pan out (quite frankly, it was terrible). But Fable stuck with me. Fast forward to late 2012 and (sort of a spoiler alert!) I saw a story on my local news about a young, pretty female teacher who was arrested for having sex with her 17-year-old male student. It got me thinking. When females are victims of this sort of thing, everyone’s appalled. When it happens to a male, a lot of the time he’s made out as a guy who just scored with an older woman. So I wanted to write a male victim and a strong female who comes along and saves him. You’ve written numerous romance books both as Monica Murphy and Karen Erickson ― did you find you approached writing a new adult romance differently? Yes! First of all, I’d never written in first-person point of view (POV) before so that was a challenge, but one I enjoyed immensely. I prefer writing in first-person POV now! Also, with a new adult title, all emotions are heightened. It’s a very dramatic time of our lives and everything has a newness, a freshness to it. First time away from home, first real job, first real love, and first chance to make major mistakes and have to fix them on your own. I wanted to capture that — as a writer, there’s a lot to play with during this time period. And with a new adult, it’s not just about the romantic relationship either. There’s so much more going on. Yes, the romance takes priority (and with Drew + Fable, how could it not, considering the situation they’ve thrown themselves into!) but there are other things happening. Family responsibilities, school, family trouble (ooh lots of trouble), jobs — it’s all an important part of their lives. We never imagined that the word ‘marshmallow’ could be so romantic! You made it so special for Drew and Fable ― what inspired you to pick this? It’s so random it’s almost embarrassing. I wrote OWG during the holiday season. I got to the part where Fable suggested they needed a “rescue” word to send or say to each other, and I paused. Glanced around my desk. Saw the box of caramel covered marshmallows (that I kept to myself for fear my children would eat them all) sitting there and thought...marshmallow. I never meant for it to become this THING. It’s so awesome. When Drew + Fable get married, they need a marshmallow wedding cake, right? *winks* Drew and Fable’s romance is powerfully moving ― were there particular parts of their story you found emotional to write? Yes, definitely. As I wrote OWG and got closer to the end, I kept thinking, should I go there? Should I take it there? I hesitated for a bit and then thought, I’m going for it. I’m so glad I did. I think it made the story that much more emotional. What Drew has to deal with is pretty difficult. My biggest fear was that he’d look like a wimp. So glad readers didn’t think he was one. And when I wrote the end of Second Chance Boyfriend, I burst into tears. Those two are buried so deep in my brain it’s sort of scary. It was hard to let them go. I still haven’t. They make plenty of appearances in both Three Broken Promises and Four Years Later, especially Fable. Have you always wanted to be a writer? What do you love most about your job? I’ve always been a reader and when I was in high school, I took journalism classes and was on the school newspaper. I became an intern at my local newspaper in college. So yes, I always wanted to be a writer. I discovered Jude Deveraux and Judith McNaught books during my teen years and I remember thinking, ooh I could do that. But then life got in the way for many years. Back in 2005, I was at home with my two youngest and I decided to try my hand at writing again. I was first published as Karen Erickson in 2006. I’ve been working hard ever since. I have the best job in the world. Where else can you work at home, be there for your kids when they need you and fall in love with a different guy multiple times a year, yet you’re not cheating on your husband (LOL)? Oh, and search the web for pictures of hot men and call it “research”? You can’t beat that! Do you have the most fun creating your heroes or your heroines? Do you have a favourite hero or heroine? It really depends on each book I write. Sometimes the hero speaks more to me and sometimes it’s the heroine. Lame answer, I’m sorry… My favourite hero and heroine? Why, Drew + Fable of course. Those two changed my entire career. I adore them. Who are the authors you read for pleasure? There are a ton of authors I read for pleasure. It would take me a month to list them all. But the one I read without fail? The one who I make sure and preorder so when I get the notice the book is on my Kindle, I drop everything to read her latest? Jill Shalvis. Ack, I love her books so much! What are your guilty pleasures? Chocolate, pedicures and purses. We are so excited to read Three Broken Promises and Four Years Later! Can you give us any hints of what you have planned for Jen and Colin and Owen and Chelsea? I’m excited for everyone to read TBP and FYL too! Okay, hints… Jen and Colin’s book is by far the sexiest of the series. I think it’s because they’re an older couple and Colin is rather demanding (heh heh). Owen and Chelsea’s book is the longest book of them all. Chelsea is the complete opposite of Fable and Jen. And Owen…Owen was a joy to write. I just turned the book in and I’m a little in love with him. Okay, I’m a lot in love with him. And we have to ask – will we get to see some more of Drew and Fable in books three and four?! As I mentioned, YES. Yes, Drew + Fable are all over books three and four. Especially Fable — she’s in the opening scene of TBP. She plays a huge part in Owen’s book because, well, she’s his sister. I hope readers will love those glimpses of D+F.

Headline Review

Her Father's Sins

Josephine Cox
Authors:
Josephine Cox

Her Father's Sins by Josephine Cox, the Sunday Times bestselling author of Lonely Girl and Whistledown Woman, is a classic that will appeal to fans of Catherine Cookson and Lyn Andrews alike. 'Cox's talent as a storyteller never lets you escape' - Daily Mail. Queenie seemed born to suffer. Her mam died giving birth to her, her drunken father George Kenney ignored her unless he was cursing her, and only beloved Auntie Biddy provided an anchor for the little girl. Growing up in post-war Blackburn, life could be tough when Biddy had to take in washing to make ends meet - at a time when the washing machine began to gain popularity. After Auntie Biddy's death there was only Queenie to care for the home and to earn money, and no one to protect her from the father who blamed his daughter for her mother's death.But Queenie was resilient. And in spite of hardship, she grew up tall and strikingly beautiful with her deep grey eyes and her abundant honey-coloured hair. Love, in the shape of Rick Marsden, might have released her from the burden of the drink-sodden George. But the sins of the fathers would not be easily forgotten . . .

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A Little Badness

Josephine Cox
Authors:
Josephine Cox

A young woman battles for her parents' affection, desperate for the love that had always been denied to her. Will she ever find it? A Little Badness is an unforgettable saga of family, danger and true love, from bestselling author, Josephine Cox. Perfect for fans of Sheila Newberry and Cathy Sharp.Rita Blackthorn's heart was barren and hard. In all of her life she had never truly loved. But she had hated. Beneath the loving gaze of her daughter's soft green eyes, her heart swelled with dark and dangerous emotions.Young Cathy Blackthorn has never experienced any loving response from her mother; it is her beloved Aunt Margaret, with a heart as big and warm as the summer sky, who has been more of a mother than her own could ever be. And when Cathy's father Frank Blackthorn brings home a London street urchin and announces this will be the son he and Rita have never had, Cathy despairs of ever winning her parents' love. Cathy is a generous soul, though, and tries to give the young lad a chance to prove himself but, unlike her best friend, David Leyton, something about him makes her more than uneasy... What readers are saying about A Little Badness: 'Good storyline vividly written. Holds the attention throughout''It's a long time since I have been riveted to a book, I just couldn't put it down... Worth the five stars without a doubt'

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Bad Boy Jack

Josephine Cox
Authors:
Josephine Cox
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Born to Serve

Josephine Cox
Authors:
Josephine Cox

When her future is cruelly snatched away, can she ever hope for happiness again? Josephine Cox writes a heart-stopping saga in Born to Serve, a tale of courage, fortitude and devastating jealousy. Perfect for fans of Rosie Goodwin and Kitty Neale. 'I can take him away from you any time I want.' Her mistress's cruel taunt is deeply disturbing to Jenny. But why should Claudia be interested in a servant's sweetheart? Jenny reckons without Claudia's vicious nature; using a wily trick she seduces Frank, who, overcome with shame, departs for a new life in Blackburn. Losing her sweetheart is just the first of many disasters that leave Jenny struggling to cope alone.When Claudia gives birth to Frank's baby girl, she cruelly disowns the helpless infant and relies on Jenny to care for little Katie and love her as her own. Always afraid for the beloved child who has come to depend on her, Jenny is constantly called upon to show courage and fortitude to fight for all she holds dear. In her heart she yearns for Frank, believing that one day they must be reunited. When Fate takes a hand, it seems as though Jenny may see her dreams come true... What Amazon readers are saying about Born to Serve: 'It is a heartrending story and is so well written that you feel so much for Jenny, Katie and Frank. It has many interesting twists and turns but remains a brilliant story throughout. A definite good read for a long afternoon!''I loved this book and it's definitely one of my favourites, I did not want it to end. The story grips you as soon as you start reading and I did not want to put it down to do anything else''Another spell-binding, unputdownable story from Josephine Cox'

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Let Loose the Tigers

Josephine Cox
Authors:
Josephine Cox

As she retraces her steps back north, Queenie threatens to disturb more than one person's future... In the sequel to Her Father's Sins, Josephine Cox writes a captivating saga in Let Loose the Tigers, in which Queenie returns to Blackburn... and to her past. Perfect for fans of Kitty Neale and Rosie Goodwin.Queenie Bedford fled her native Blackburn and the bitter knowledge that she and Rick Marsden, the man she loved, could never marry. But in 1965 she returns north again to stand by her friend Sheila Thorogood, imprisoned for running a brothel with her mother Maisie. Though Rick had vowed to find her, Queenie takes care that he should not know of her whereabouts.The magnificent Edwardian house in Blackpool is sadly neglected - but Queenie moves in with the ailing Maisie, and sets about transforming it into a sparklingly clean, highly respectable guesthouse. Meanwhile, Queenie meets the frail and confused Hannah Jason, locked away years ago for murder, and desperate for news of her long-lost son. As Rick continues his dogged search for Queenie, she sets out to find Hannah's son. But both their enquiries threaten to unlock the cage where crucial secrets have long been held captive. What readers have been saying about Let Loose the Tigers: 'This book was brilliant, once you pick it up you cannot put it down because you need to know what happens next''Keeps you spellbound till the end'

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Living a Lie

Josephine Cox
Authors:
Josephine Cox
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Love Me or Leave Me

Josephine Cox
Authors:
Josephine Cox
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Outcast

Josephine Cox
Authors:
Josephine Cox

As history threatens to repeat itself, the actions of one young woman lead to tragic consequences... In the first instalment of the Emma Grady trilogy, Josephine Cox's Outcast is an extraordinarily powerful saga of a passionate, yet impossible, love. Perfect for fans of Cathy Sharp and Kitty Neale.On a fateful night in 1860, Thadius Grady realises, too late, that he has made a grave mistake. In blind faith he has put himself and his daughter Emma at the mercy of his sister and her conniving husband, Caleb Crowther - for he has entrusted to them his entire fortune and the daughter he adores. With his dying breath he pleads to see his daughter one last time - but Caleb's heart is made of stone.A feared Lancashire Justice, Caleb Crowther is a womaniser and a gambler, and now the inheritance due to Emma is as much in his hands as is the beautiful Emma Grady herself. But Caleb lives in fear of the past, for how did Emma's mother mysteriously die? And what made Thadius and Caleb hate the river people so intensely? History seems likely to repeat itself when Emma falls helplessly in love with Marlow Tanner, a young bargee. For Marlow and Emma, it is an impossible love - a love made in Heaven, but which could carry them both to Hell... What readers are saying about Outcast: 'A dark and somewhat disturbing tale of intrigue, mystery and romance; of treacherous relatives and doomed love affairs''I loved this story. You can really feel the emotions of the characters and the threats they face. The actions and settings are so vividly described that you could almost be in the scenes yourself''One of the best books I've ever read'

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Looking Back

Josephine Cox
Authors:
Josephine Cox
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Jinnie

Josephine Cox
Authors:
Josephine Cox

Ten years ago, Louise Hunter's life was torn apart by tragedy. Her husband, Ben, killed himself; her brother-in-law, Jacob, was murdered; and her sister, Susan, abandoned her new-born daughter, revealing the baby is Ben's child. Louise remains haunted by guilt over the one night she spent with Ben's friend Eric, and refuses to return Eric's love. But after adopting Jinnie, she finds new happiness - until Susan decides she wants Jinnie back.Meanwhile, Adam and Hannah, whose mother was killed with Jacob, are on the run. What Adam witnessed on that dreadful night has put them all in danger, but their beloved grandmother knows that one day they must return to the place where it all began . . .

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Let It Shine

Josephine Cox
Authors:
Josephine Cox

Ada Williams once believed money and power would bring her happiness. But now she is all alone except for her greedy son Peter, who waits only for the day he will inherit her fortune. Ada, however, has a different plan altogether. A few miles away in Blackburn, the Bolton family may be poor - but the love they share means they can overcome almost any adversity. But no one could foresee the shocking events of Christmas night, 1932, which split the family asunder, leaving Larry crippled and the twins, Ellie and Betsy, in a foster home. Events that began many years ago, when Ada Williams was young and foolish.

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Rainbow Days

Josephine Cox
Authors:
Josephine Cox
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Tomorrow the World

Josephine Cox
Authors:
Josephine Cox

Bridget Mulligan loves her husband. He is caring, loyal and dependable - everything a woman could ask for. But she can't quite forget Harry - the one that got away - and when a snow storm drives her into his arms, the inevitable happens. Nine months later a child is born. Overcome with remorse, Bridget is determined that her husband should know the truth, but her confession can lead only to heartbreak. Although he allows his wife and her child to continue living in his home, Tom Mulligan makes it clear that their marriage is over. Lonely and afraid, Bridget finds comfort in the friendship of Fanny, a feisty young mother who knows what it is to be alone. But Bridget's life can never be complete until she has the love of the only man she ever really wanted...

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Miss You Forever

Josephine Cox
Authors:
Josephine Cox

One winter's night, in the coal-hole in her yard, Rosie finds that a woman sheltering there has been severely beaten by thugs. At a glance, Kathleen looks like an unkempt, aged vagabond who tramps the roads carrying all her worldly possessions in a grubby tapestry bag. Her only friend is the mangy old dog who accompanies her; the sum of her life is in the diaries she so zealously guards. Yet close up, Rosie can see that Kathleen has a gracious beauty - the 'look' of a respectable lady of means.In hospital, fighting for her life, yet moved by Rosie's care and compassion, Kathleen entrusts the diaries to her, urging her to look at them. There, in the soft glow of the lamp, Rosie reads a heartrending tale of stolen dreams, true love, heartache and loss. A tale that, somehow, must have a happy ending . . .

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Cradle of Thorns

Josephine Cox
Authors:
Josephine Cox

Nell Reece has never known her mother, and her father's burden of guilt about his wife has kept him cowed for years, working as a common labourer on his sister's farm. But for all her aunt's spiteful attempts to break Nell's independent spirit, she has never succeeded. But now Nell, pregnant and alone, is forced to leave behind the men in her life, believing she might never be able to return. With little but the clothes she wears, she travels across the Bedfordshire countryside of 1890. When she encounters a scruffy urchin called Kit, a ten-year-old orphan who's lived his whole life on the streets, she takes him under her wing. The pair become devoted friends, never knowing where their journey will take them, but each aware that the time will come when there must be a reckoning.

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A Time for Us

Josephine Cox
Authors:
Josephine Cox

Lucy Nolan is the golden girl. The only daughter of local grocers, Sally and Mike Nolan, she's grown up in a home of total love and security. The one thing her heart desires is that Jack Hanson might ask her to marry him, and when he does eventually propose, Lucy is prepared to give up everything to be with him - even though it means leaving her beloved parents to live abroad where Jack has been offered an exciting business opportunity.But then, almost on the eve of the marriage itself, tragedy strikes. And for the first time in her life, Lucy is forced to realise that Fate, which has been so kind to her, can also be just as cruel.

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More than Riches

Josephine Cox
Authors:
Josephine Cox

When Rosie's parents were involved in a train accident, her mother was killed and her father left crippled, unable to earn a living and relying on Rosie to keep the wolf from the door.With her mother gone and her sweetheart Adam away in the army, Rosie is lonely. She eagerly awaits the letters from him, but they never come. As she grows more disillusioned, Adam's best friend Doug goes out of his way to be charming and attentive. Alone and confused, Rosie blossoms under his evil influence. Soon she is carrying Doug's baby and her father has thrown her out of the house. Realising she has no choice, she agrees to marry Doug.As if she isn't in enough trouble, Rosie's whole world falls apart when a warm and wonderful letter arrives from Adam . . . telling her he's on his way home.

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Nobody's Darling

Josephine Cox
Authors:
Josephine Cox

Lizzie Miller worries about her beautiful eldest daughter. A mother shouldn't have favourites, but Ruby wins a special place in Lizzie's heart. Money is short in their little house in Blackburn, and Ruby yearns to give her beloved family a better life. Determined to enjoy the security only wealth can bring, she stifles her feelings for handsome Johnny Ackroyd. Ruby knows he cannot offer her the life she craves. She works as a maid for Mr Banks and his daughter, Cicely. The two girls hatch a mischievous plan to introduce Ruby to society at a party for the 'gentry' of Blackburn, where Ruby meets Luke Arnold, the dissolute heir to his father's fortunes. Seeing Ruby's dark beauty, he determines to despoil her innocence. When Luke slyly turns his charm on Cicely, Ruby feels compelled to warn her friend of his evil nature. Ruby quickly finds employment in a milliner's shop, and eventually takes over the business. But her worldly success still leaves an emptiness that riches cannot fill, and Ruby learns at last that the love of family and friends is beyond price . . .

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Don't Cry Alone

Josephine Cox
Authors:
Josephine Cox

Beth Ward and Tyler Blacklock share a love they know will last forever. But Beth's mother, Esther, is jealous of the girl and seizes an opportunity to be rid of her daughter. Banished in disgrace from the family home, Beth takes the northbound train and alights at Blackburn, friendless and alone. On this day, Fortune smiles, for Beth is taken in by warm-hearted Maisie Armstrong, a widow with two children. Money is scarce, but love abounds in the cosy house on Larkhill, and Beth is content there to await the birth of her child. But she cannot forget Tyler, and is tormented by the belief that he has betrayed her . . .

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Angels Cry Sometimes

Josephine Cox
Authors:
Josephine Cox