Handcuffs, Truncheon and a Polyester Thong by Gina Kirkham

Review published on June 23, 2017.

Mavis Upton is a single mother to a 7-year-old daughter who decides to fulfil a life long ambition to join the police force. This tale follows her through the application process for joining the force, her training and the subsequent trials and tribulations of life as a police officer.

I admit I was a bit sceptical about the blurb on the front of this book when it said it is a laugh out loud read as I have bought several books with this sort of wording only to find the actual book very boring but Handcuffs, Truncheon and a Polyester Thong is not among them. It is a laugh out loud book which I really should not have read while in bed with my husband asleep next to me; he wasn’t amused to be woken by my cackling!

Gina Kirkham knows how to describe Mavis’s life to make the funny side stand out but to also keep the serious side there as well without either overshadowing the other. It starts with Mavis’s training, which was hilarious, the description of the other students could not have been better. Yes, there were probably more silly people training with her than normal but none were in the wrong place and all added to the tale. Gina’s description of Mavis’s mother’s malapropism-filled speech and her own problems with wearing polyester thongs made me howl with laughter.

My only problem with this book was a time scale issue; towards the end I got confused as I hadn’t realised that Mavis’s life had moved forward as fast as it had so was surprised to find the 7-year-old daughter suddenly being 17, but might just have been me. Finally, I loved the fact that I got an extra with the book in the shape of an actual extra large polyester thong (not that I would wear such a thing!).

Sue Dawson 5/5

Handcuffs, Truncheon and a Polyester Thong by Gina Kirkham
Urbane Publications 9781911331711 pbk May 2017


SECOND OPINION: A History of Running Away by Paula McGrath


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