Secrets, Scandal and Betrayal: Take a Sneak Peek at Belinda Alexandra’s The Mystery Woman

Secrets, Scandal and Betrayal: Take a Sneak Peek at Belinda Alexandra’s The Mystery Woman

CHAPTER ONE

The train burst from the tunnel and the bay came into view. Rebecca squeezed her eyes shut before opening them again, and twisted the gloves in her lap. She had not expected the scenery to be so magnificent. Mountains, verdant with lilli pilli, wild cherry and cabbage tree palms, shadowed the town, which was tucked into the elbow of the bay like a babe in the crook of his mother’s arm. On the other side of it, flat rock platforms jutted out into the ocean. The sea beyond the bay was vast. It spread to the horizon and shimmered with a spectacular shade of sapphire blue. The surface was calm but Rebecca knew there was nothing more treacherous than the sea. A fluttery feeling disturbed her stomach and she looked away. It was ironic that she should have been assigned this coastal town when there were hundreds of inland centres equally in need of her services. Perhaps it was fate. Perhaps a divine reminder of mistakes made that could never be forgiven.

The train slowed and came to a stop in front of a station with a weatherboard office and waiting room. The ‘Welcome to Shipwreck Bay’ sign was sun-bleached and in need of paint, but below it somebody had planted a bed of purple pigface which was vibrant with spring blooms. Rebecca tugged down her suitcase from the rack and pulled her gloves over her hands. She stepped onto the platform at the same time the stationmaster appeared from his office, rubbing his bald pate before he replaced his cap and hitched his trousers over his substantial belly. He stopped in his tracks and widened his eyes when he saw her. ‘Are you on your way to Melbourne, Miss?’

His gaze slowly ran over Rebecca from her pump shoes to her calot hat. She was used to that look. Even girdled and clothed for business in a nipped-waist tweed jacket and pencil skirt she couldn’t hide her curvaceous figure. Men – young, middle-aged, old, ugly or handsome – always regarded her like a delicious cake they wanted to gobble up. It bemused her now that she was no longer young. At thirty-two years of age she was as good as a spinster. And with her round face and hooded grey eyes, she did not consider herself especially beautiful. Yet men always stared even when there were far more attractive women in the room. ‘You’ve got something magnetic about you Becky,’ her friend, Marion, always told her. ‘Men just can’t look away.’

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            Synopsis

            In a small town, everyone is watching... Secrets, scandal and betrayal in 1950s small town Australia: the stunning new novel from bestseller Belinda Alexandra.She had thought Shipwreck Bay was simply a remote town where people were bored senseless with their little lives. Now she saw its virtuous facade hid something darker, more sinister.Rebecca Wood takes the role as postmistress in a sleepy seaside town, desperate for anonymity after a scandal in Sydney. But she is confronted almost at once by a disturbing discovery – her predecessor committed suicide.To add to her worries, her hopes for a quiet life are soon threatened by the attentions of the dashing local doctor, the unsettling presence of a violent whaling captain and a corrupt shire secretary, as well as the watchful eyes of the town's gossips. Yet in spite of herself she is drawn to the enigmatic resident of the house on the clifftop, rumoured to have been a Nazi spy.Against the backdrop of the turbulent sea, Rebecca is soon caught up in the dangerous mysteries that lie behind Shipwreck Bay's respectable net curtains.
            Belinda Alexandra
            About the author

            Belinda Alexandra

            Belinda Alexandra has been published to wide acclaim in Australia and New Zealand, France, Germany, Holland, Poland, Norway and Greece. She is the daughter of a Russian mother and Australian father, and has been an intrepid traveller since her youth. Her love of other cultures and languages is matched by her passion for her home country, Australia, where she is a volunteer rescuer and carer for the NSW Wildlife Information and Rescue Service (WIRES).

            Books by Belinda Alexandra

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