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Showing posts from July, 2018

Why I became Vegetarian (and what I've leaned since)

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The Lobster Incident occurred on 23rd May 2018.

I had decided that it was high time my husband and I ate the lobster that had been in our freezer for... well, a while. Since it was for two of us and there's not much meat on a lobster I also got out a couple of salmon fillets.

I'd never prepared lobster before, so I was  a little shocked when I tipped the lobster out of its cardboard box because it looked like a lobster. Yes, I wonder what I expected, but there it was, red and dead, an entire animal, looking at me.

I read the instructions on the box. "Twist off the claws. Insert a knife into the back of the head and twist until the shell cracks..." I recoiled in horror. I couldn't do that to this animal.

Some context here. A few years ago I squirted wasp killer at a wasp which was terrorising my dining room. I watched as the innocent creature fell onto the window sill, writhing and twitching horribly, and slowly curled up in a ball of pain and died. I sobbed, horr…

Book Review: Road to Covered Bridge

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Okay, I'll say it - this writer is a better writer than me. I'm honoured to share a publisher with her. Her writing style is the kind that wins high-brow awards for literature.

This book reminded me very much of “To Kill a Mockingbird”, not just because it’s written from the point of view of a spirited child, but because of the lyrical, meandering prose which really was beautiful, evocative and authentic. The book leaves a lot of questions unanswered, and you get the feeling that the answers are just out of the reach of our narrator, but the characters are fully rounded and intriguing.

It’s masterfully written and feels very much like "real life" in that it's not nicely packaged with trite answers, clear endings, and sensible conversations - in fact, I loved the parts where the family were all talking at once, often about different subjects, and in a very disjointed way, because that is what family life with children is really like.

Although this isn’t an era or a…

Introducing The Husband Hunt

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My last novel, Fields of Glory, was published in April this year, and any day now my next book, The Husband Hunt, will hit the shelves. I feel suddenly prolific!

Just to clarify, though, I didn't write an entire book in three months. In fact, The Husband Hunt is the product of the best part of a decade of work. I first came up with the idea of four friends having a competition to see which of them can find a man to marry first in around 2005. It would be a comedy, I decided, and include lots of hilarious disastrous dates.

To help with the "research" I fired up the chocolate fountain and invited all my female friends over for a party at which they would each talk about their dating adventures. It was a really fun evening, and we heard some stories which left us open-mouthed in astonishment, many of which made it into the book. When you read the book bear in mind that almost all the dating disasters in it are genuine incidents. (My personal favourite is the only proposal in…