Last Night


Two best friends. One missed chance. And a night that changes everything.

Eve, Justin, Susie and Ed have been friends since they were eighteen. Now in their 30s, the four are still as close as ever, Thursday pub quiz night is still sacred, and Eve is still secretly in love with Ed.

Maybe Eve should have moved on by now, but she can’t stop thinking about what could have been. And she knows Ed sometimes thinks about it too.

Then one night, in an instant, all their lives change forever. And, as Eve learns she didn’t know her friends as well as she thought, she also discovers she isn’t the only person keeping secrets …

Read An Excerpt From Last Night

Question TWELVE, before we take a short break. What do Marcus Garvey, Rudyard Kipling, Ernest Hemingway and Alice Cooper have in common? I’ll give you a clue. It involves a mistake.’

We stare blankly at each other. Packable Anoraks are frantic-whispering instead of writing or looking sneaky-smug, which means they’re not sure either.

‘Is it choice of first wife? As in they’ve all had more than one?’ Ed says.

‘We don’t call people we divorce, mistakes, now,’ Susie says. ‘My mum does,’ I say.

‘Remember when our RE teacher said: “People are too quick to divorce nowadays” and you said, “I think they’re too slow” and you got a detention for it?’ Susie says and I guffaw. ‘Ah, there she is,’ Ed says, as the door slaps open and his girlfriend Hester appears, her nose wrinkling in distaste at the slight fug of ‘armpit’.

My heart sinks a notch but I ignore that it has done this and paste on a strong, welcoming smile.

To be fair, The Gladdy does have a bit of an aroma sometimes, what with the sticky floor, but that’s part of its charm. It’s a dartboard-and-devoted-regulars pub.

I love it, year round, with its scrappy concrete beer garden with flower planters on the fire escape. I think they are supposed to simulate ‘verdant urban oasis’ in a yard full of lager and smokers. But it’s at its best in autumn and winter. Frosted-leaf mulch and dark skies with bright stars on the other side of the steamed-up panes. Serious hygge to be had, on this side of the window.

Well, mostly.

Hester moved to Nottingham for Ed, a fact she likes to relitigate about once a month.

She looks like a colourised picture has walked into a black and white, kitchen-sink realism film: skin the colour of ripe peaches and shimmering champagne-blonde hair. She’s like a human Bellini.

Her balled fists are thrust in her coat pockets, a Barbour with a fawn cord collar, as if she’s smashed into a saloon in a Western and is going to draw two guns.

It’s not that I don’t like Hester …

‘Are you all drunk by now, then?’ she says, bullishly. She glances at me. ‘Eve looks drunk.’

Oh, why do I bother. It’s absolutely that I don’t like Hester.

Nice words about Last Night

  • A book I almost wish I'd written, except that would have robbed me of the intense joy of reading it... the kind of novel that will have you putting everything else on hold so you can keep turning pages until you reach its sparkling, brilliant end

  • I cannot remember the last book I loved as much! It reminded me of Ralph's Party, and also felt reminiscent of the friendship group in Bridget Jones. What a luminous, heart-achingly beautiful love letter to friendship