Dealer’s Thumb

I’m back. Did you miss me? I’ve been to Wales. Where the sun went in and the rain came down about thirty minutes after I got out of the car. So – normal for me then.

The big news is that I’ve got Dealer’s Thumb. And yes, that is a thing. I’m pretty certain I’ve got Shuffler’s Wrist, as well. Although I’m less certain that’s a thing. But definitely Dealer’s Thumb.

The reason I’ve got Dealer’s Thumb – which is excruciating, thank you for asking – is that, obedient to my agent’s commands, I’ve been road testing the new St Mary’s card game – Mayhem.

I received a kind invitation from my agent cunningly concealed among the words, ‘Stop lolling around, Taylor and get yourself over here and do some actual work for a change. Oh, and you can do a recorded Q & A session for your social media pages and do a reading from one of your books while you’re at it. And while you’re here there are some accounts to go over, a million things to discuss and a ton of fresh air and exercise waiting for you.’

‘But I’m really busy and …’

‘And there’s a bottle of wine with your name on it.’

‘I’ll go and pack.’

Three card-filled days later, I’m happy to announce Mayhem is – to use a phrase we’ve all heard uttered before – oven ready.

It’s actually great fun. Basically, you draw a jump card and then have to assemble people and kit appropriate to that jump. Not as easy as it sounds. On several occasions the game required me to surrender my meticulously acquired cards – which, obviously I was very unwilling to do and there were some hard words over that – and start all over again from scratch. Having defeat snatched from the jaws of victory exacerbated my thumb no end, resulting in yet more pain-killing wine which improved the flair and skill with which I played although some people said it didn’t.

And, apparently, you can’t claim RSI for a throbbing thumb which seems very unfair. Along with the frequently used phrase, ‘Stop moaning, Taylor and hand over your best cards. Now.’

Hazel did tell me when the game will be available but drinking wine doesn’t always improve my listening skills. (Hazel interjects - you can order now and it will be shipped in September) I do recommend giving the game a go. It’s designed for eight-year olds and upwards – ‘So possibly a bit advanced for your feeble skill set, Taylor, but do your best.’

And there’s an extraction pack – no, that’s not right – an extension pack – no, that’s not right either. Expansion pack – that’s the phrase I’m looking for. An expansion pack with extra cards which make it more appropriate for adults. I wanted – ‘Leon turns up with doughnuts. Miss two turns but reappear with a big grin on your face,’ but I was told to shut up and rub more Deep Heat on my thumb. Which didn’t work, incidentally, although I now have beautifully clear sinuses through inadvertent inhalation.

So that’s all right then.


  • Kathleen Grapp

    This game sounds perfect! It sounds just like your books! Thank you Hazel for making Jodi make it!

  • Victoria B

    Woohoo! Bring it! I’m starting a rigorous exercise regime of thumb strengthening… and two and one and two… I’ll be ready for the orf!

  • Jacqueline Heywood

    I need mayhem! How do I order

  • Jacqueline Heywood

    I need mayhem! How do I order

  • janet clark

    Doh! I bet you kept that thumb tucked in…

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