Surprise Lunch (short story) – Gabrielle Lord

What a lovely little treat of a short story!

The January edition of Woman & Home magazine had a little booklet entitled Summer Tides: A Collection of Short Stories, described thus:

A warm, summery day and the blissful lure of a hammock of a beach towel – the perfect summer moment to indulge in this collection of light reads. There’s romance, mystery, fun … and the chance to lose yourself in the pleasure of short-story daydreaming!

The first story in the collection is a tale called Surprise Lunch by well-known Australian author Gabrielle Lord, who has been dubbed Australia’s first lady of crime! Have a look at her website here to get to know her a little better. If her short story is anything to go by, then I’d be keen to pick up one of her full length novels – since I AM on the path to loving thrillers, I might as well!

Surprise Lunch tells the timeless tale of wife hatches plan to kill husband, widow sets her sights on someone less boring, then of course something altogether unexpected happens … OOOOH what could it be?

This is a light and breezy read which I actually thoroughly enjoyed, right from the first sentence where the protagonist gets out of bed: “Sonja Skadenheim woke and knew that today was her husband’s last day alive …” all the way through to the haunting final sentence: “… until finally there was nothing but shocked silence.”

Quite a ride hey?

What got me the most about this seemingly innocuous story is the many layers which can be unpacked in each of the parts of the story – like why Sonja got married in the first place. Trying to find happiness in riches.

Perfect summer beach read for sure!

-Babongile Z

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