Today I’m delighted to welcome women’s novelist Kate Frost.
Her ‘Porridge & Cream’ read is the classic Chocolat by Joanne Harris. “To be honest, I have more than one ‘Porridge and Cream’ book, and they’re all quite different, but the book I’d happily pick up when feeling ill or run down is Joanne Harris’ Chocolat – a delicious and delightful character-driven novel centred around single mother and chocolatier Vianne Rocher and her young daughter, Anouk. I first read it over a summer, not long after it had been published, so around 2000 or 2001. I’d recently moved in with my boyfriend (now husband) and we’d been to Greece together to meet his parents and the whole of his extended Greek family, so a book set in a French village that immersed its characters in local life with the focus being on food and delicious chocolate creations resonated with me and my first experiences of a Greek family and their abundance of delicious food.
I’ve only read Chocolat two or three times (like I said it’s one of a number of favourites), but it is the perfect book to get pulled into when I’m feeling down. The most recent time I read it was after recovering from a minor operation and the wooziness of a general anaesthetic. It was winter time and cold and grey outside and Chocolat with its luscious descriptions was the perfect antidote to raise my spirits. The setting is what appeals most and the way Joanne Harris weaves smells, textures and tastes throughout the novel is perfect.”
Kate Frost’s Bio
Kate has always made up stories, ever since she started writing at seven years-old when she spent months at home recovering from open heart surgery for a hole in her heart. After working various jobs including in a factory, a cinema, a bookshop, as a Health Advisor and Team Manager at NHS Direct, and a Supporting Artist in the films Vanity Fair, King Arthur and The Duchess, she’s now lucky enough to spend her time running around after her energetic just-turned-three year-old and writing novels. Kate has a MA in Creative Writing from Bath Spa University and has published two women’s fiction novels and a time travel adventure for 9-12 year olds.
Kate Frost’s books
Kate’s debut novel, The Butterfly Storm, was published in 2013 and has recently had a cover revamp. Set in Greece and on the north Norfolk coast it follows Sophie as she escapes an unsatisfying life with her boyfriend, Alekos, and a domineering Greek mother-in-law to be, to come back to the UK to look after her estranged mum after she’s injured in a motorbike accident. Faced with a physical and emotional distance from Alekos, a complicated relationship with her mum, an emerging friendship with a handsome and newly divorced man, and a shock discovery, will Sophie be able to make the tough decision of where she wants to be and, ultimately, who she wants to be with?
‘Butterfly Storm’ by Kate Frost [UK: Lemon Tree Press]
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 via the contact form here.
‘Chocolat’ by Joanne Harris [UK: Black Swan]