The Sister Swap

By: Fiona Collins



Two sisters. Two very different lives…

Meg simply doesn’t have time for men in her life. Instead, she has a strictly one-date rule, survives on caffeine and runs one of the biggest model agencies from her smart office in London. That is, until she collapses one day at work and the doctor orders her to take some R&R in the country…

Sarah is used to being stuck behind tractors and the slow pace of her cosy village life. But now her children are all grown-up (and her ex-husband long forgotten) she’s ready to change things up a bit – starting with taking back her old job in the city!

After a devastating falling out, the sisters haven’t spoken in years. Swapping houses, cars, everything is the only option – surely they’ll be able to avoid bumping into each other?





FIONA COLLINS

lives in the Essex countryside with her husband, three children and the noisiest cat in England. She likes to write feisty, funny novels about proper, grown-up women.

Fiona studied Film & Literature at Warwick University and has had many former careers including TV presenting in Hong Kong, radio traffic presenter and film & television extra. She has kissed Gerard Butler and once had her hand delightfully close to George Clooney’s bum.

You can follow Fiona’s witterings on Twitter @FionaJaneBooks or find her swanning around on Facebook at facebook.com/fionacollinsauthor






Chapter One


Meg

‘Oi, oi! Had a good night, darlin’?’

Meg tried unsuccessfully to yank her dress in the vicinity of her knees. It didn’t want to cooperate and sprang back up. This showstopper of a dress – claret red, tight, sleeveless – wouldn’t be dragged down, unlike its owner, clearly. It was a dress for midnight. A dress for a bar or club or fancy restaurant. A dress for peeling off and throwing with abandon on the bedroom floor of a man you probably (no, definitely) wouldn’t be seeing again. Not a dress for skulking up a London street at 5 a.m. on a Friday in early June, your shoes in your hand.

‘Walk of shame, is it?’

Meg tried to ignore the muscle-bound builder with the large expanse of over-tanned man cleavage and the orange hard hat – an unfortunate throwback to the Village People if ever she’d seen one – who was shouting at her from across the street.

‘Sod off,’ she muttered under her breath. Meg tugged at her dress again and put her head down. She was hungover; it hurt. She pulled her phone from the gold clutch bag under her arm and pretended to examine it intently whilst Village Person and the rest of his crew – the only bloody builders in London who started at five in the morning, it seemed – laughed. Why, oh why did she get a night bus that dropped her at the end of the road, rather than a cab? Why, oh why had she gone back to Mikey (Matty?)’s flat in the first place? She navigated a broken beer bottle and a fag butt, her bare feet protesting at every step.

‘Looking fiiine, lady,’ catcalled another builder, sporting a leer and a Bart Simpson T-shirt. Meg had got the night bus because it stopped directly outside Matty’s? Mikey’s? flat. Mikey, that was it. She’d put his number in her phone last night, after six gin and tonics and some extensive work, on his part, to chat her up – not long before she’d gone home with him. As if on cue, his name flashed up on her phone now. She ignored it. She’d text him later. Tell him it was fun but it wouldn’t be going anywhere. It never did. Meg was a firm believer in never getting emotionally involved.

‘Mighty fine!’ echoed a fat Daniel Craig lookalike in a high-vis waistcoat and he gave a long, loud wolf whistle, which she wouldn’t have minded, during the day – she was thirty-eight; she took what she could get. As it was silly o’clock and she was highly inappropriately dressed, it really wasn’t that welcome. She really must stop having one-night stands with men she didn’t particularly like.

Meg allowed a woman in a suit on a Boris bike to overtake her. A car beeped and Meg resisted the temptation to give it the finger. She was home. She ran up the three steps to her dark-blue front door, turned her key in the lock and stepped inside with relief, before throwing her keys on the table and her sandals on the floor and padding on sore feet over to the kitchen – which she barely used apart from uncorking Prosecco over the sink and storing perfume in the fridge – and pouring herself a large glass of water.