Tragic Tale Of Young Singer Inspired Local Author

Alice Peterson will give a talk about 'A Song for Tomorrow' based on a true story


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A Chiswick author has written a novel based on the true story of Alice Martineau, a young girl who followed her dream to become a singer despite suffering cystic fibrosis. Superstar Robbie Williams has called the story of Alice Martineau ‘Inspirational’.

Alice shot into the limelight fame following an article in 2002 in the Daily Telegraph's Sunday magazine, in which she discussed her music and her wait for the life-saving triple transplant which sadly did not come in time. She died the following year.

alice martineau a young singer who died

Alice Martineau

The story so inspired writer Alice Peterson that she emailed Alice and subsequently listened to her music. She has now written her latest novel, A Song for Tomorrow, based around Alice's story, her struggle to live as normal a life as possible and bring her music to the attention of the public and the music industry.

Alice will be discussing her book, which was published last month by Simon & Schuster, at a Local Authors event to be held at Waterstones, Chiswick High Road, on Wednesday 15 March, from 7pm - 9pm.

She has worked closely with the Martineau family to ensure that the book would celebrate Alice's legacy and they are delighted with the result, saying that 'Alice dances off the pages' of the novel. Characters and some of the narrative have been created but the central theme and the character of the young singer-songwriter, have been retained.

Alice Martineau originally thought she could not become a singer because of her genetic condition, but ironically, it transpired that her constant coughing had strengthened her diaphragm. Despite her worsening health, she played live gigs regularly in London until 2001 and was offered record deals by several companies, only to have them withdrawn when executives discovered that she was seriously ill and on the waiting list for a heart, lung and liver transplant.

The day after the magazine article, her manager approached Sony Music with a demo tape and she was signed to their label in late 2002. Alice completed this debut album quickly as most songs had already been written over the previous three years. Her debut single, "If I Fall", was released on 11 November 2002, with the album Daydreams following a week later on 18 November. Tracks on the album were produced by a number of people, including Marius De Vries. A promotional preview CD containing one track from her album and four short previews was also circulated.

Sony had planned to release a second single, "The Right Time" on 10 February 2003 but decided to cancel the release due to Martineau's poor health.

Three of her songs were played on the BBC Radio 2 Jeremy Vine show last week and her album has since shot up the charts to number 25.

Alice Peterson writes contemporary fiction with humour and compassion. Her novels always have the feel good factor, but she also aims to take the reader to a darker place where characters have to overcome adversity.

This is partly due to Alice's own life experience of living with Rheumatoid Arthritis, which she wrote about in her memoir Another Alice.

She says the experience of living with a chronic illness gave her an instant connection to Alice Martineau when she read her story in the Telegraph magazine and she then emailed her.

The idea for a book about Alice Martineau came to her when she was out walking her dog in Chiswick three years ago and trying to come up with an idea for her next book. Alice then tracked down Luke Martineau (her brother) and he discussed the idea with his parents.

Alice Peterson has written four novels: Monday to Friday Man, which has sold over 500,000 copies across all editions, Ten Years On, By My Side and One Step Closer to You, which won the Festival of Romance's Best Romantic Read 2014.

And the new book has some strong endorsement. Robbie Williams calls the story of Alice Martineau, ‘Inspirational’. Fellow Chiswick author, Janet Ellis says, ‘It’s a story that goes straight to the heart’.

March 13, 2017

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