The Lost Letters of William Woolf by Helen Cullen – Extract – Blog Tour.

Today I am sharing an extract with you. The Lost Letters of William Woolf is a book that I have been trying to read for a few months. I hope to read it soon.

About The Book

My Great Love…’

William Woolf is a letter detective at the Dead Letters Depot, where he spends his days reuniting lost mail with its intended recipient.

But when he discovers a series of letters addressed simply to ‘My Great Love’ everything changes.

Written by a woman to a soulmate she hasn’t yet met, her heartfelt words stir William in ways he has long forgotten.

Could they be destined for him? And what would that mean for his own troubled marriage?

William must follow the clues in the letters to solve his most important mystery yet: his own heart. 

Extract

Lost letters have only one hope for survival. If they are caught between two worlds, with an unclear destination and no address of sender, the lucky ones are redirected to the Dead Letters Depot in East London for a final chance of redemption. Inside the damp-rising walls of a converted tea factory, letter detectives spend their days solving mysteries. Missing postcodes, illegible handwriting, rain-smudged ink, lost address labels, torn packages, forgotten street names: they are all culprits in the occurrence of missed birthdays, unknown test results, bruised hearts, unaccepted invitations, silenced confessions, unpaid bills and unanswered prayers. instead of longed for missives, disappointment floods postboxes from Land’s End to Dunnet Head. Hope fades a little more every day, when door bells don’t chime and doormats don’t thud.

William Woolf had worked as a letter detective for eleven years. He was one of an army of thirty, having inherited his position from his beloved uncle, Archie. Almost every Friday throughout William’s childhood, Archie, clad in a lime-green leather jacket, rode his yellow Honda Dream 305 over for tea, eager to share fish and chips doused in salt and vinegar served with a garlic dip, and tales of the treasures rescued that day.

Listening to Archie opened William’s mind to the myriad extraordinary stories that were unfolding every day in the lives of ordinary people. In a blue -lined copy book, he wrote his favourites and unwittingly began what would become a lifelong obsession with storytelling, domestic mysteries and the secrets strangers nurse. What surprised William most when he started working there himself was how little Archie had exaggerated. People send the strangest paraphernalia through the post: incomprehensible and indefensible, sentimental and valuable, erotic and bizarre, alive and expired. In fact, it was the dead animals that so frequently found their way to this inner sanctum of the postal system that had inspired the Dead Letters Depot’s name. A photo taken in 1937, the year it had opened, showed the original postmaster, Mr Frank Oliphant, holding a pheasant and hare aloft, with three rabbits stretched out on the table before him. By the time William joined in 1979, it was a much more irregular occurrence, of course, but the name still endured. He still felt Archie’s presence amid the exposed red brick walls of the depot, and some of the older detectives sometimes called William by his uncle’s name. Their physical similarities were striking: muddy brown curls, chestnut beards flecked with rust, the almond shaped hazel eyes that flickered between shades of emerald green and cocoa, the bump in the nose of all Woolf men.