It is the summer of 1965. Annie Cradock, the only child of exacting parents who run the village school, is an imaginative girl with a head full of the Beatles and the Rolling Stones. Annie whiles away the school holiday with her friends: Ollie the rag-and-bone man (and more importantly his dog); the beautiful piano-playing Mrs Clitheroe who turns Beethoven into boogie-woogie (and like Annie sees music in colour); and Annie's best friend Babette - streetwise, loyal, and Annie's one solid link with common sense. But everything changes when the village is rocked by a series of murders and the girls know something they've no intention of telling the police.
In the present day, adult Annie is a successful singing coach in a stifling marriage. Her ambitious American husband, impatient with his quirky wife, is taking a job in New York - but is she staying with him? As Annie struggles with her future, she first has to come to terms with the bizarre events of 1965.
"'Bright, engaging and very funny'"
"'A compelling read'"
"'Highly original...told with humour and poignancy by a hugely likeable heroine...An entertaining and compelling read filled with rounded, memorable characters, and both darkly funny and moving'"
"'Painting Ruby Tuesday is indeed a comic novel, but one which is elevated by the music which flows through it, and the unusual and original descriptions'"
"I loved it...I thought it was wonderfully blackly comic in that uniquely English way...interlaced with an understanding of how fragile modern relationships can be"