A FORMER Stroud News and Journal news editor has published her first book.

Perfectly Imperfect: The Story of the Two Js is a novel about unmarried mothers, illegitimacy and adoption in the 1960s written by Carole Taylor under the name C J Taylor.

It tells the story of inseparable friends Juliet and June - known as “The Two Js” - who meet at school aged five but grow up to lead very different lives.

June marries a wealthy man she doesn’t love to get away from her parents, whose 18th birthday gift to her was telling her that she was adopted.

Juliet, meanwhile, goes to Italy and falls in love with a handsome Italian.

Returning home, she discovers that she is pregnant, and she becomes an unmarried mother - a sin of enormous proportions in the 1960s - who is forced to have her infant daughter adopted.

The two women’s intertwined lives delve into the intricacies of human relationships, love and the ensuring power of friendship.

Perfectly Imperfect considers the complexity of life’s choices and their repercussions, reminding us that a decision to do or not to do something can change everything.

“This book is fiction based on fact,” said Carole, who now lives in Gloucester.

“I was an unmarried mum in the ‘60s, forced to have my daughter adopted, and my experience of illegitimacy, adoption and the enormous social and religious problems surrounding them has been woven into this book together with the stories of other women who had similar experiences.

“I hope this book reflects an extraordinary time in women’s recent history when so much heartbreak was caused by the whims of a puritanical society and in the name of religion.”

Perfectly Imperfect: The Story of the Two Js is available on Amazon, where it can be purchased as a paperback for £12 and in a Kindle format for £3.99.

For more information and to buy the book, visit tinyurl.com/y72aanbu