There were signs I was going to be a writer from an early age. In order to torture me in later years, my parents kept several copies of The Birchall Times, a monthly newspaper I wrote about my household when I was about eight years old. It covered groundbreaking topics such as my brother’s haircut and the time my spaniel chased a rat.
If I could sing or dance, I would devote my life to musicals. Alas, I was not bestowed with any of the talent required for such a career, but there’s nothing I love more than going to the theatre and watching others live out my dream while sipping wine and wistfully thinking about what could have been.
I have a soft spot for weddings. I love how people let loose at a wedding. I think it’s because it’s a day that reminds us of what’s really important in life: love, laughter, friends, family. For a few hours, weddings offer us an escape from everything else.
I’m so scared of sharks, I won’t go in the sea. A casual paddle up to the knees is as far as I go. Even when I’m swimming in a pool, I glance behind me nervously, looking out for rogue fins. Also, what is the deal with jellyfish? They freak me out, too.
I’ve always loved romantic comedies. Whether it be a book, film, TV show, I love a good rom-com and will always pick it over any other genre. My love of them started when I read Meg Cabot’s The Princess Diaries at thirteen years old. I was having trouble fitting in at a new school, and Mia and her hilarious, heartwarming antics offered so much comfort.
I have a Romanian rescue dog. Clearly someone in the rescue charity had a thing for U2, because my dog’s name is Bono, something I was unsure of at first, but now I think it weirdly suits him. Bon is a nervous dog from being so horribly mistreated in the past, but he’s thoroughly spoilt now and is so affectionate and devoted. He’s the love of my life (sorry, Ben.)
I would love to write a murder mystery one day. Sometimes I’ll be walking somewhere with people and say out loud, ‘this is a good place for a murder’, and it never goes down too well. But the point is, I often wonder if I could write a good murder mystery one day, because I love reading and watching them. If I had to pick an all-time favourite literary detective, it would be Inspector Morse.
About The Secret Bridesmaid
As a professional bridesmaid, Sophie is hired by brides to be their right-hand woman, posing as a friend but working behind the scenes to ensure their big day goes off without a hitch. From wrangling rowdy hen dos to navigating last minute portaloo cancellations and family dramas, there's no problem she can't solve. So when she's hired by an actual Marchioness to help plan the society wedding of the year, it should be a chance for Sophie to prove just how talented she is. Of course, it's not ideal that the bride, Cordelia Swann, is an absolute diva and determined to make Sophie's life a nightmare. It's also a bit inconvenient that Sophie finds herself drawn to Cordelia's posh older brother, who is absolutely off limits. And when a rival society wedding is announced, things start to get rather complicated...
Can Sophie pull off the biggest challenge of her career, win over a reluctant bride, and catch the eye of handsome Lord Swann - all while keeping her true identity a secret, and her dignity intact? Heart-warming and hilarious, The Secret Bridesmaid celebrates the joys (and foibles) of weddings, the nuances of female friendship, and the redeeming power of love in its many, unexpected forms.
About Katy Birchall
Katy Birchall is the author of several young adult novels including The It Girl series, the Hotel Royale series and Morgan Charmley: Teen Witch. She is the co-author of the middle grade Lightning Girl series and Star Switch with Alesha Dixon, and the Find the Girl teen series with YouTube stars Lucy and Lydia Connell. Katy was proud to be the author of a retelling of Jane Austen's Emma for the Awesomely Austen series, a collection of Austen's novels retold for younger readers. She has also written a non-fiction book, How to be a Princess: Real-Life Fairy Tales for Modern Heroines. The Secret Bridesmaid is her first adult novel.
The Secret Bridesmaid by Katy Birchall is published by Hodder & Stoughton on 13th May, £7.99