A care assistant with a secret. A gardener with an eye for more than greenfly. An estate agent and an advertising man, each facing a relationship crisis. And a pilot with nowhere to land.
At twelve fifty-five on a sunny afternoon, five lives converge in a moment of terror as a helicopter crashes on Clapham Common. It’s a day that will change them all forever — and for some, will be their last.
Winner of the Wink Publishing Debut Novel Competition
Nominated for the Polari First Book Award
‘A funny, often painfully honest and moving story about the absurdity of modern life and the concerns that propel us. Chalmers writes with a sensitivity and wit that recalls Armistead Maupin’s Tales of the City’ – Penny Hancock, bestselling author of Tideline
‘A charming novel that’s cleverly structured and consistently engaging’ — Matt Cain, Editor-in-Chief, Attitude magazine
’A poignant study of genuine love in a big and fantastically diverse city’ – BytetheBook.com
HERE ARE MY THOUGHTS AND REVIEW
Firstly I love the cover of this book which you don’t quite get until you have read what is inside, or the title for that matter but now I do, all too clearly I do. The prologue is set in present day with a chain of events that have led up to this moment that put a group of people, who wouldn’t have met, together. That is apart from one of them because this spectacular entrance was intended as a publicity stunt to inflate numbers on a two-bit show. This was a quick in out illegal pick up by a helicopter on Clapham Common. They did get headlines, but not quite the ones they were after.
Once the scene is set the story drops back in time to the everyday lives of four characters, their families and friends. They all come from very different backgrounds, all of them at a crossroad in their lives for careers and relationships. The chapters dart from one indecisive person to another making excuses of life isn’t fair to being frightened to take a chance.
Out of all the characters in the story I really liked Tony who was taking timeout from his homeland of New Zealand to stay with a friend in London that he met while jet setting round the world for different work commitments. He is just so sweet, trusting and gullible.
There is plenty of humour in the writing from the hilarious scenes on a barge in the middle of Loch Ness, full of contestants taking part in a Big Brother type show, to a care home for the elderly. Each of the voices captured in the distinctive characters throughout the book making it easy reading. Time eventually caught up to the present day event on Clapham Common and continued a little further. I felt very involved in these people’s lives that changed because of one event, well not quite for them all …………..
A talented author that writes in many directions with each of his books.
HERE IS A LITTLE ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Chris Chalmers was born in Lancashire and lives in south-west London. He’s been the understudy on Mastermind, visited 40 countries and swum with marine iguanas. His first novel, ‘Five To One’, was winner of a debut novel competition and nominated for the Polari First Book Prize. He has written a diary for 42 years and never missed a night.
Click on a Five-To-ONE-MINUTE-MOVIE for a 60-second intro to the main characters and themes of ‘Five To One’. Or search ‘chris chalmers novelist’ on YouTube, for clips of Chris reading from his other books, poems about Christmas Eve and butcher’s shops, and fox cubs dancing to ABBA. (Yep, it’s as high-brow as that.)