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Summary

Meet Mavis Upton. As mummy to 7-year old Ella and surrogate to far too many pets, and with a failed marriage under her belt, Mavis knows she needs to make some life-changing decisions. It's time to strike out into the world, to stand on her own two feet ...to pursue a lifelong ambition to become a police officer. I mean, what could go wrong?

Supported by her quirky, malapropism-suffering mum, Mavis throws herself headlong into a world of uncertainty, self-discovery, fearless escapades, laughter and extra-large knickers. And using her newly discovered investigative skills, she reluctantly embarks on a search to find her errant dad who was last seen years before, making off with her mum's much needed coupon for a fabulous foam cup bra all the way from America.

Follow Mavis as she tackles everything life can throw at her, and revel in Gina Kirkham's humorous, poignant and moving story of an everyday girl who one day followed a dream.

©2017 Gina Kirkham (P)2017 Audible, Ltd

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  • Overall
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Really very good

The first thing you should know is that I very, very rarely listen or read comedy. This is because usually the writing isn't funny, and barely even raises a smile, never mind a laugh. I wanted to try this book because of the narrator. Diana Croft is a class act and I love her narration. I've listened to her narrate thrillers, so I thought I'd see how good she is at comedy. The answer is very, very good. There were some very funny moments in Handcuffs, Truncheon and a Polyester Thong. Mavis Upton is a joyous creation and I loved her and her family and colleagues. There were some genuine laugh out loud moments and once I spluttered my tea out all over my beautifully folded ironing, (you've been warned)! Listening to it gave me a lovely warm feeling all over. The writing was good with sharp dialogue and quick witted put downs, the funny never strayed near to unkind or derogatory and there were also some exquisitely crafted moments of poignancy. Of course, you can write the funniest book in the world, but if you don't retain the services of an excellent voice actor, it won't make anyone laugh. If the essence of good comedy is timing, then I shall be setting my watch by Diana Croft, who single handedly made a good book great. If you want to brighten your day, buy a copy of Handcuffs, Truncheon and a Polyester Thong. You can thank me later

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hilarious

Omg SO SO funny, if you listen to one book this year , this is the one , following mavis through her life of becoming a police officer in training to her life on the beat with all the disasters that follow her I didn't stop laughing the whole time

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Hilarious & touching

I was given a copy of this audiobook by the narrator in order to provide her with feedback about her 'scouse' accent but feel the urge to review the book itself as I absolutely loved it.
This is the story of Mavis, a single mum who follows her dream to become a police officer with hilarious results. The character of Mavis is beautifully written and she is warm, funny and three dimensional. Her interactions with her mother & daughter are touching and funny, she thinks on her feet on the job and gains the respect of colleagues and criminals alike. A really well rounded character, eminently likeable and hysterically funny at times.

The humour reminded me of home, lots of snot & fart jokes that had me crying with laughter. The scene in the court room where Mavis' buttons pop off nearly finished me off as I choked on my tea. There are many emotional moments too, the balance is well thought out and the scenes with Amy & her little family were terribly sad.

The narration was superb. Diana Croft is very talented and her portrayal of Mavis made the book for me. The scouse accent wasn't overdone so came across as believable, and Diana's range of voices for the various characters was excellent. I particularly liked how Ellie's voice changed with her age, I do like that attention to detail.

Overall, I thought this was a really lovely book, beautifully read. I will listen to it again as it's a real feel good tale of a feisty single mum overcoming her fears and living the dream.

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Wet your Tena-Lady funny

If you think this book might be your cup of tea - grab the audiobook version. Diana Croft almost killed me off with the giggling fits this book gave me.

Mavis Upton is the author's alter ego who one day has an epiphany and decided to join the police and live her dream. She tells us about the training courses, initiations into her first station and some of the more memorable jobs of her early career from a uniquely female perspective. What I enjoyed is that this is a story of a woman who gives as good as she gets! She's a single mother to her very funny daughter Ellie, and daughter to an equally wicked mother. It's her perspective on everything as a woman that makes it so easy for me to relate to - mishaps with stockings that won't stay up, car seats that won't come far enough forward and the eternal struggle of making an ample bosom look smart in formalwear.

Most importantly, this book is insanely funny. It's possible the humour is a bit of an acquired taste but it's definitely one of mine! There is quite a lot of snot and other body secretions in this book, as well as some excellently timed fart jokes but it's important to see the funny side of absolutely everything when your work involves seeing the worst sides of absolutely everyone.

It's not all giggles though, there are some chapters that deal with the sadder aspects of Mavis' work and private life, Diana Croft had me holding back tears when she read these. That woman is GOOD. The whole story is in the voice of Mavis, with her funny and matter of fact voice with a Scouse (Liverpool) accent which is a tricky one to copy successfully but Croft nailed it - she clearly worships at the same altar of 'less is more' that I do when it comes to accents.

The book itself is beautifully written, every single word had its place in this book and had an impact on me. I'm not one for re-listening to audiobooks as a rule but this one will be my go-to forever. 

The take away message of this book for me is that you'll never get out of the job alive if you can't laugh at yourself!

**I received a free copy of this audiobook for an honest and unbiased review**