hindsight, it could have been her "one chance to prevent what
was about to happen", said Kate McCann, adding: "And I blew it.
London - Kate McCann
slept alone the night before Madeleine vanished because her husband had
offended her at dinner, it emerged on Sunday.
Upset by Gerry's 'abrupt' behaviour, she took to a spare
bed in the children's room at the family's holiday apartment in
In her forthcoming book, which was serialised in the Sunday
Times, Kate also reveals she is haunted by the belief that Madeleine
tried to tell her that somebody had tried to break into the children's
With hindsight, it could have been her 'one chance to
prevent what was about to happen', said Kate, adding: 'And I blew it.'
Madeleine, who was three, disappeared from her bed in the
family's apartment in Praia da Luz on the evening of May 3, 2007, while
her parents were eating at a nearby tapas restaurant - as they did every
night of the holiday.
The possible missed chance came at breakfast on the day
Madeleine vanished, when the little girl disconcerted her mother by
asking: 'Why didn't you come when Sean and I cried last night''
Kate, 43, says: 'Not for a moment did we think there might
be some sinister explanation. But it is [now] my belief there was
somebody either in or trying to get into the children's bedroom that
night, and that is what disturbed them.
'So haunted have I been ever since by Madeleine's words
that I've continued to blame myself for not sitting down and making
completely certain there was no more information I could draw out of
Her emotional book, called Madeleine, is being published
this Thursday - the day of Madeleine's eighth birthday.
In one extract, Kate describes her horror at discovering a
predatory paedophile could easily have been tipped off that Madeleine
was vulnerable, by a staff note on display at reception which revealed
the McCanns 'were leaving our young children alone ' and checking on
The note was written by a receptionist to staff explaining
why they wanted to reserve tables every night close to their Algarve
Although she is 'loath' to make it public by writing it in
the book, Kate describes how she and Gerry had a row on the final night
before their daughter was lost.
As the couple and their holiday friends were enjoying a
drink at the bar, at 11.50pm, Gerry 'abruptly announced' that he was
tired and off to bed.
His wife was 'slightly hurt' he had gone without her, and
writes: 'He's not a touchy-feely guy. Like many men, he assumes I take
his feelings as read and doesn't see any need to express them with
soft-soaping, flowers or cards.
'I am not sure why I was miffed by his lack of social
graces that evening. Perhaps because the other guys in the group were
all attentive 'new men', compared with Gerry at least, and I was a bit
When she followed him a few minutes later, she found him
already asleep and snoring and so, 'still feeling a bit offended', she
chose a bed in the children's room because 'my peaceful slumbering
babies were more attractive room-mates'.
Kate, whose 384-page book is being serialised in The Sunday
Times and The Sun newspapers, says she still feels sad at the memory -
though stresses the 'isolated' incident was not reflective of their
relationship as a couple.
In an interview with The Sunday Times, Kate said her
hospital consultant husband had an ability to 'switch off' from the
grief, and was 'functioning' again much sooner than she was.
The former GP admitted: 'Sometimes I found it almost
offensive, as if somehow he wasn't grieving enough.'
Recalling a television appeal to the abductor they recorded
together, Gerry added: 'That day I remember we were concerned we weren't
crying. The thing is, we're not actors. We were trying to focus on
getting our message out.'
The McCanns, of Rothley, Leicestershire, are hoping the
sale of the book will raise '1 million to fund the continued search for
their missing daughter.
On Sunday, Kate and her youngest daughter Amelie attended
church in the village, where prayers were said for Madeleine.
Kate dispels suggestions she and Gerry were drunk on the
fateful night, saying their alcohol consumption was 'hardly excessive',
and that although their group of nine friends was noisier than other
tables, they were not 'partying wildly'.
In fact, she said they were so tired they nearly had dinner
inside their own apartment the night Madeleine vanished - but then
decided that would be anti-social. Kate revealed it took two traumatic
bouts of IVF treatment to conceive Madeleine.
After two years of failing to get pregnant, she said she
'didn't think twice' about going down the IVF route, and her first
attempt seemed to go well.
She felt so confident and excited, going to the hospital
two weeks after the embryos were implanted, that when the pregnancy test
was negative, 'I simply couldn't believe it', she recalls.
The couple were keen to start trying again immediately, but
a practical problem stood in their way: at the point Gerry would need to
provide his sperm, he was due to give a presentation at a cardiac
conference in Berlin, an important stepping stone in his career.
He cancelled the trip, the procedure was successful, and at
six weeks' pregnant, Kate had a scan and saw a beating heart. - Daily