Excerpt Time! Handcuffs, Truncheon and a Polyester Thong by Gina Kirkham @GinaGeeJay #Excerpt #AuthorTakeOver

Posted May 31, 2020 by Zoé in Author TakeOver, Excerpt / 2 Comments

Today I get to share with you an extract from Handcuffs, Truncheon and a Polyester Thong, this is such a fab book and I really can not urge you enough to pick up a copy!

What is this book about then?

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Excerpt Time! Handcuffs, Truncheon and a Polyester Thong by Gina Kirkham @GinaGeeJay #Excerpt #AuthorTakeOverHandcuffs, Truncheon and a Polyester Thong by Gina Kirkham
Series: Mavis Upton #1
Published by Urbane Publications on June 1, 2017
Pages: 320
Also by this author: Handcuffs, Truncheon and a Polyester Thong, Whiskey Tango Foxtrot, Blues, Twos and Baby Shoes

Meet Mavis Upton.

As mummy to 7-year old Ella, surrogate to far too many pets and with a failed marriage under her belt, Mavis knows she needs to make some life-changing decisions. It's time to strike out into the world, to stand on her own two feet … to pursue a lifelong ambition to become a Police Officer. I mean, what could go wrong?

Supported by her quirky, malapropism-suffering mum, Mavis throws herself headlong into a world of uncertainty, self-discovery, fearless escapades, laughter and extra-large knickers. And using her newly discovered investigative skills, she reluctantly embarks on a search to find her errant dad who was last seen years before, making off with her mum's much needed coupon for a fabulous foam cup bra all the way from America.

Follow Mavis as she tackles everything life can throw at her, and revel in Gina Kirkham's humorous, poignant and moving story of an everyday girl who one day followed a dream.


“It was an Epilator Mum, I ask you, a bloody Epilator and he looked suspiciously at my top lip as he handed to me!” I gave the gravy a stir and looked at her for a bit of girly support. She smiled as she frisbee’d a Tupperware lid at me from the other side of the kitchen. She sat down on the breakfast bar stool.

“So, romance is not dead yet then?” she laughed.

I squished a lump under the spoon and watched the brown liquid bubble. “Dead! It’s buried under the wrapping paper, along with Joe.” I sighed and hammered down another gravy lump, this time a little more aggressively. “Please tell me I haven’t got a hairy top lip?”

Slamming the kitchen cupboard at the side of her, she paused for effect before wagging her finger at me. “No love you haven’t, but you could try it out on that awful hairy big toe of yours.” She turned around to see if everyone was seated at the table ready for the commencement of the Upton family Christmas dinner, or as Michael so succinctly put it, the Upton Trough and Trotter Convention.

Joe held the carving plate high, the turkey for fourteen of us precariously balanced as he edged his way past Nanny Flo’s chair, accidentally knocking Connie’s reindeer ears off her head and into her glass. Crimson splashes spotted the white tablecloth.

“Hey up Connie, you’ve spilled a bit there, not like you to lose a drop of the old red.”

Connie glared at him. “Very funny Joe, I’m actually pacing myself this year…” she hesitated and looked at Nan who was sitting next to her. “… think you should do the same Flo, that’s the third glass of sherry you’ve had already. It’s not good for you.”

Nan pushed her bottom set of false teeth out, wiggled them and just as quickly sucked them back into her mouth. “Says who? A little bit of what you fancy never done me any harm before and I’m almost 87!”

She defiantly gulped down the remains from her glass and held it out to me for a refill. I looked at Mum for approval whilst Ella buried her face in her serviette, desperately trying not to retch at the sight of Nan’s dentures at the dinner table.

“It’s Christmas Mavis, but no Whisky, just make sure she sticks to the sherry.” Mum plopped a stuffing ball on Connie’s plate. Connie held up three fingers, indicating she could manage more than just the one that had been offered.

“Frisky…” Nan almost spat her top set of dentures out to join her bottom ones. “… I haven’t been ruddy frisky since 1957!”


“Anyone seen Nan?” Connie’s voice was temporarily muffled by a huge mouthful of Black Forest Gateau.

Joe scraped the remains of his Christmas pudding into the bin and flicked a lump of bread sauce from his finger. “The last time I saw her she was bouncing off the walls in the hallway on her way to the loo. The two helpings of pud, God knows how many mince pies and all that sherry was too much for her, think she’s asleep in the front room.” He let out a snigger.

Mum wasn’t impressed. “How long ago was that? Can someone go and check on her?” she dried her hands on her apron and looked at me to oblige.

“She’ll be fine Mum.” I took my paper hat off, crumpled it into a ball and bounced it off Joe’s head.

“I’ll come too…” Connie jumped up from her chair, almost tripping over her own discarded shoes, before whispering in my ear “… we could have some fun here.” Linking her arm through mine, just as we always did when we were little, she dragged me along the hallway and into the main hall. We stood outside the door and waited.

“Look, I got this from your cracker.” She held out her hand. Nestled in the palm was a black plastic moustache. “I’ll position Nan; you can take the photos.” she held back a giggle, which only served to make her snort loudly. She wiped her nose on her sleeve.

The lounge door swung open, quietly rubbing against the carpet as we stood in silence watching Nan, mouth open, slumped in the overstuffed armchair by the Christmas tree. The excess wine and brandy that we had drunk with our dinner seemed to fuel our mischievous mood. As Connie carefully shoved the moustache up Nan’s nose, I pranced around doing a wonderful David Bailey impression, snapping one photo after another whilst Connie manoeuvred Nan’s arms and legs into an array of poses.

“Oh Mave, this is bloody brilliant.” Connie took the camera from me, checking the remaining shots.

I took another look at Nan, sprawled out with her beautifully coiffured white hair, best frock, pearls and her black plastic moustache. The photos would really cheer Mum up. I had to admit, she did look absolutely hilarious… well, that was until I suddenly realised that she hadn’t actually moved on her own accord for some considerable time.

My heart missed a beat. Actually several beats if I’m honest.

“Connie, Connie… I think there’s something wrong with her.” I tentatively touched her arm, whilst Connie, still in the rapturous throes of laughter was verging on a Tena Lady moment.

“Connie, I’m serious, I can’t find a pulse!” I was now frantically trying to find some sign of life in Nan’s wrist as sheer panic began to set in.

Connie stopped laughing, the colour draining from her face.

“Oh crap …” she exhaled loudly and ran from the lounge slamming the door back heavily so that it hit the arm of the sofa. “… Mum, Mum…”

I could hear Mum’s voice drifting from the hallway. “What is it Connie, calm down love.”

Connie’s voice caught in a sob.

“I think Nan might be a little bit dead Mum…”


Twenty minutes later we stood on the doorstep, watching Nan lying prone on a stretcher being carted off to the ambulance, still sporting her black plastic moustache, which was now unfortunately wedged underneath her oxygen mask, quivering with each strained intake of breath.

I closed the front door and looked at Connie.

“Shit, that didn’t quite go according to plan, did it?” she smirked. I put my arm around her and shook my head.

…and it was at that exact moment I knew next years’ family Christmas card wouldn’t depict Tootles, Nan’s bulbous eyed Chihuahua under the tree wearing a stupid Santa hat, but Nan herself…

… resplendent in a diabetic coma, with a plastic Aldi cracker moustache shoved up her nostrils ad a tantalising glimpse of her fuchsia pink bloomers.

What do other people have to say about Handcuffs, Trucheons and Polyester Thongs?

GoodReads Reviewer says:- Gina Kirkham has a fantastic talent of conveying humour in a wry, funny and saucy way to the reader and I do hope there is a follow up to this book very soon, it would be great to continue reading Mavis’ journey through her life, career and family. Everybody needs a Mavis in their life!!

Novel Deelights says:- As I was looking for a book that would make me laugh, this one caught my eye. The title and the cover alone made me snort in the most unladylike manner. However, don’t let the cover or the description fool you too much though. Yes, there is hilarity and I did laugh, out loud even, at times. However, there’s a depth to this story that I wasn’t really expecting, which was a truly nice surprise.

GoodReads Reviewer says:- Mavis is such a delightful character – full of flaws but so determined, plucky and real! The humour mixes well with the more tender, emotional moments and I’m delighted to hear the author is already working on another book featuring this character! I can’t wait!!!

GoodReads Reviewer says:- Handcuffs, Truncheon and a Polyester Thong is an outstanding debut novel and Gina Kirkham is an exceptional writer. Her ability to create characters that jump off the page and feel like friends is second to none. Mavis is someone who I immediately warmed to and getting to know the non-professional, mother/daughter side of Mavis, she quickly endeared herself to me and became someone who I wanted to know and have a coffee and dunk a biscuit with. The interaction between Mavis and her colleagues is wonderful and the pranks they played on each other were hilarious.

Click on the picture to meet Mavis

About Gina Kirkham

Gina Kirkham was born on the Wirral in the not-so-swinging 50’s. Being the less adventurous of three children, she remains there to this day. Trundling a bicycle along a leafy path one wintry day, a lifelong passion to be a police officer gave her simultaneously an epiphany and fond memories of her favourite author Enid Blyton and moments of solving mysteries. Thus began an enjoyable and fulfilling career with Merseyside Police. On retirement she put pen to paper to write a book based on her experiences as a police officer. And so Mavis Upton was born…



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2 responses to “Excerpt Time! Handcuffs, Truncheon and a Polyester Thong by Gina Kirkham @GinaGeeJay #Excerpt #AuthorTakeOver