The King’s Road, Chelsea in 1970’s London is the epicentre for fashion, music, and unlikely friendships – where it’s now cool for posh, privileged girls to mix outside their social circles. When two such teenagers meet and form a close and sisterly bond, their worlds are unexpectedly and suddenly torn apart as they each suffer personal traumas. Needing to escape London to hide their shameful secrets, they embark on individual rollercoaster journeys of extreme highs and lows that take them to Paris, Los Angeles and the South of France, where men are rich, sex is a commodity, drugs are a way of life and a glamorous celebrity life is optional.
Thank you first to the author for reaching out to me and offering a copy of of her debut work of fiction.
This was pure escapism into an affluent and glamourous world of fashion and celebrity, hard to put into a genre, but historical fiction and erotic thriller both fit! The story begins with a prologue, set in Cannes in 1980 and a suspicious death before we travel back in time to 1967 where we meet our main protagonist, Phoebe aged 13. This story is Phoebe’s story as she matures into the 70s and establishes herself as a successful stylist to the stars.
Her journey is not without its hitches and as we join Phoebe on her travels we observe first hand her traumas and her successes. The story spans 23 years to its conclusion in Cannes and while this is a story about the roaring sixties with all its vices; sex, drugs and rock and roll, this is also very much about friendship.
With Valley of the Dolls vibes and Jackie Collins’ ‘sauce’ this is an entertaining page turner with an engaging plot. At over 480 pages this is no small read but was quick nonetheless, easy to pick up, hard to put down! Some of the dialogue I found a bit stilted but this did not detract in any way from the story itself. The story begins and ends with a death, but essentially this is about 2 teenagers who meet in school – Paula and Phoebe, whose lives take very different trajectories, but whose friendship remains, through the years and difficulties they face along the path their lives take them on.
Thanks again to Ceril Campbell for sending me a copy of her book which is available to buy now from Amazon.
About the Author
Ceril has always been passionate about fashion and ‘Secrets in the Dark’ her debut novel – is not autobiographical in any way, but is based on her insider knowledge of the world of celebrity. In her early twenties, with a fashion design and merchandising degree, she was given the opportunity by the Jean Machine brand to create and design for two FU’s flagship store in London’s Knightsbridge and Bond Street.
Ceril subsequently opened her own kids emporium, ‘Kids on the Green’ on the Kings Road whilst also styling for magazines, TV commercials, pop promos.
For the last thirty years she has worked as a celebrity stylist, fashion commentator and expert on TV and radion with her own magazine columns and features. She is now a broadcaster and inspirational speaker, helping clients with lifestyle, image, life change, self-esteem, positive body confidence and mental wellness. Ceril has written self-help books – the most recent being, ‘Discover the New You, celebrity stylist secrets to transform your life and style’ available on Amazon. Ceril lives in London and has two adult children.