How Tracy Chevalier writes

Tracy Chevalier “My husband, Jonathan, is a trustee of the Woodland Trust; he’s been going on about them [trees] for years. Slowly, it’s sunk in.”
[in an interview with the ‘Sunday Times Magazine’, March 6, 2016]

Tracy Chevalier


Sometimes, as a novelist, true life ends up creeping into the story without you realizing it. Tracy Chevalier is a go-to author for me. She has always written from life and has been described as a ‘method writer’ as a reflection of the depths to which she will research a subject. Famously she explored Victorian attitudes to death for her novel Fallen Angels by becoming a tour guide in Highgate Cemetery in London, and studied weaving for The Lady and the Unicorn.

So I wasn’t surprised to read her quote about trees. She is referring to her latest novel, At the Edge of the Orchard. In 1830s Ohio, James Goodenough and his wife Sadie argue about which type of apple trees to plan. He wants sweet apples for eating, she wants sour for cider.

Read my reviews of Tracy Chevalier’s other novels:-
The Last Runaway
At the Edge of the Orchard

Read more about Tracy Chevalier’s novels at her website.

See how these other novelists write:-
Sara Baume
Kevin Maher
Robin Stevens

Tracy Chevalier


‘At the Edge of the Orchard’ by Tracy Chevalier [UK: Borough Press]

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