Extract from chapter 2:
‘Really? You begin in Nicaragua?’ said the yes woman. I thought she had read it already. Or at least my synopsis. ‘But you don’t seem that intrepid… The skin on your hands could make a handbag I might consider buying.’
I shrugged. ‘That’s always an option we could explore if the book doesn’t sell.’
‘Now, I have another lunch to get to,’ said their leader. ‘Read the rest of his book and bring me a report. I know we’ve been forced to talk to him, but look at it anyway.’
‘Who forced you to have lunch with me?’
‘That we will never tell you, I’m afraid.’ He stood up. ‘No, don’t get up, they still have to bring you another cognac. We’ll read it and we’ll probably publish it. But only because we have to. Are you happy? You don’t look it.’
‘I probably should be happier,’ I agreed.
‘Yes, you probably should. Okay, let’s go. The next one’s a science fiction writer who used to be a hand model. Marketing have a great idea for getting her hands onto the cover and making a logo as well.’
‘Is this Charlene Swann you mean?’ said the yes woman. ‘I love her hands! Am I going to get to shake them?’
‘Sounds like they’d make an even better handbag than mine,’ I said.
‘Of course. We’ll be seeing you, BB. If you don’t hear from us, look for your book in the smaller stores. And get an agent to handle the deal. Please.’ They left in single file, sweeping through the glass doors that swung open for them.