Today I’m delighted to welcome romance novelist Viki Meadows. Her ‘Porridge & Cream’ read is What I Did for a Duke by Julie Anne Long.
“As I write this it’s our second spring in lockdown. Never has my keeper-shelf been so needed and such a good friend as during this last year. Of all my favourite books which have found a home on that shelf, the one I go back to the most is the historical romance What I Did For A Duke by Julie Anne Long.
“When I first picked this book up, in March 2011, I did so dubiously, thinking it was going to be a revenge seduction story. In fact, it isn’t that at all. It’s much more. It’s twisty, taking the reader down unexpected paths. But it’s more than the cleverness of plot and dialogue that kept me revisiting this during these interminable months of lockdown.
“Since life has become overshadowed by a pandemic-sized cloud of anxiety and fear I have taken it off the shelf to read at least three times. It’s hilarious in places and I found myself laughing out loud as the dry, sharp humour lifted my mood. Yet it did so without ever losing the essential characteristics of an exquisitely poignant, heart-warming romance. No matter how many times I read it the humour doesn’t get old and the emotional kick never fades. Like a bowl of porridge, it’s one of my favourites, a go-to staple that I can reach for whenever I need to feel comforted and reassured that delightful happy-ever-afters are possible.
“This story, with its vulnerable, lovable, honest characters is comfort food for the mind and heart- warm, funny, rich, and engaging. But it’s more than that. It might be a decadent bowl of porridge with lashings of cream, but it has pieces of fresh, tart strawberry sprinkled through it to keep you on your toes.“
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Viki has always loved writing and won her first prize for a short story when still at primary school. She’s an avid reader of romance and can usually be found with her nose in a book. The dynamics and sheer variety of human relationships fascinate her, and this is what she likes to explore in her writing. She lives in North Yorkshire with her husband and cat where she enjoys crafting and Tai Chi.
Viki’s latest book
When Minnie tells Villiers that she wants to break off their engagement, Villiers must face some unpleasant truths about himself and come to terms with past mistakes. His future happiness hinges on him not only winning Minnie’s forgiveness but also her heart. Will he succeed in making this the happiest of Christmases for them both? This is a short, sweet, historical romance.
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What is a ‘Porridge & Cream’ book? It’s the book you turn to when you need a familiar read, when you are tired, ill, or out-of-sorts, where you know the story and love it. Where reading it is like slipping on your oldest, scruffiest slippers after walking for miles. Where does the name ‘Porridge & Cream’ come from? Cat Deerborn is a character in Susan Hill’s ‘Simon Serrailler’ detective series. Cat is a hard-worked GP, a widow with two children and she struggles from day-to-day. One night, after a particularly difficult day, she needs something familiar to read. From her bookshelf she selects ‘Love in A Cold Climate’ by Nancy Mitford. Do you have a favourite read which you return to again and again? If so, please send me a message.
Discover the ‘Porridge & Cream’ books of these authors:-
Maggie Cobbett’s choice is ‘The Beloved Vagabond’ by William J Locke
Kathryn Haydon chooses ‘The Prophet’ by Kahlil Gibran
‘The Talisman Ring’ by Georgette Heyer is chosen by Clare Rhoden
And if you’d like to tweet a link to THIS post, here’s my suggested tweet:
Why does romance novelist @VMeadowsAuthor re-read WHAT I DID FOR A DUKE by @JulieAnneLong? #books https://wp.me/p5gEM4-5aN via @SandraDanby