When London schoolteacher George Nearly wakes up one Sunday morning to find a dishevelled young woman sprawled on his living-room rug, claiming to be a princess, his plans for a peaceful day at home recovering from his 39th birthday party disappear faster than a French monarch’s head during a revolution. And when the feisty royal accuses George of kidnapping her, his very ordinary life is turned completely upside down, as the party princess takes root in his apartment, causes royal waves among his friends and family, and demands to go walkabout on the streets of London. It’s blue-blooded British comedy by unofficial royal appointment in this hilarious, and often surreal, regal romp that’s guaranteed to raise a laugh from Balmoral to Buckingham Palace!
‘Are you alright?’ I ask, trying to communicate concern laced with a hint that I have well-laid Sunday plans and it would be a great help if she staggered off home and left me to feed my goldfish in peace.
The woman locks her knees, steadies herself with outstretched hands and grunts in response.
‘I’m George,’ I say, as if welcoming her to a flat-warming party. ‘I live here. In this one-bedroom flat.’ She cocks her head and stares at me like a freshly woken primate might eye a new zoo keeper. ‘It’s not exactly a palace but it could be worse.’ Her misfocusing eyes don’t seem convinced. ‘We could be in south London.’
‘You live here, do you?’ she says finally, with private-school pronunciation.
I keep up the polite-host routine. ‘Yes. And, in case you’ve forgotten, you don’t live here. But you appear to have spent the night on my rug.’
She inspects the floor. ‘It’s not a rug I would have chosen to sleep on. Not that I spend a lot of my time sleeping on rugs. But I am very particular about soft furnishings.’
‘That’s something we have in common.’
‘I’m not sure about that. Those turquoise and avocado swirls are absolutely hideous.’
Being a polite host is already proving to be a challenge. ‘Please don’t disrespect my rug. It’s the jewel of my apartment’s crown. And it was a birthday present.’
‘From whom – your colour-blind aunt?’
‘No. My colour-blind aunt always forgets my birthday. Actually, the rug was a present to myself.’
‘You buy birthday presents for yourself?’
‘Yes. That way, I’m never completely disappointed on the big day.’
She stretches her elegant neck and moves her focus to my coffee table. ‘Oh no! It’s getting worse. Where the hell did you purchase that monstrosity?’
‘Blame my mother.’
‘For you or the coffee table?’
‘Both, if it helps.’
Thank you, Paul Mathews and Love Books Group
About the author
Paul Mathews is a quite funny guy who ditched the London rat race to follow his dream of becoming a comedy novelist and never again having to be told what to do by anyone who isn’t a blood relative. His sharp, satirical – often surreal – sense of humour was honed after twenty glorious years in the UK Civil Service: long-lunching, cracking jokes & trying his best to look busy. He gains inspiration from his love of pubs, good food, Earl Grey tea, four-legged animals & the quirks and quibbles of British life.
Twitter Handle: @QuiteFunnyGuy
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Author’s website: https://quitefunnyguy.com
Amazon UK: amazon.co.uk/dp/B08MBGDCGH/ref=sr_1_1?dchild=1&keywords=an+accidental+royal+kidnap&qid=1604138288&sr=8-1