Sunday, 18 March 2012

Recipe for Love

I had a long train journey from Kings Cross/St Pancras the other week and it sped by in peaceful comfort. Not that the train service was especially efficient, but I had two very good things to while away the time. I’d saved Katie Fforde’s newest novel Recipe for Love for just such an occasion and popped into Peyton and Byrne to buy the necessary provisions for a smart packed lunch. They also do nice tea, which is important on a long journey and there isn’t always a buffet service lurching its way down the carriage. Reading a new novel is wonderful, but I’m much happier if I have a hot drink close by. Recipe for Love, tea and a sparkly raspberry cupcake were perfect company. I’m really rather enjoying the ‘baking’ novels that are coming out now and Katie’s is far superior to most. We’re beginning to see characters return in her books and I was pleased to learn more about Fen and Rupert whose (un)stately home was transformed into a celebrity wedding venue (and comfortable family home) in Wedding Season. The house was also used for the literary festival in Love Letters, but we never heard much about Fen or Rupert beyond being a friendly sort of couple that would cook you a superb supper and refill your wine glass all night. Recipe for Love takes us to a televised baking competition full of foragers, foodies and fabulously awful and wonderful people. Katie’s characters are life’s copers, the sort that you’re probably already friends with and you find yourself rooting for various contestants and hoping that cakes rise and nothing is dropped at the wrong moment. Zoe Harper is beautifully talented and charmingly uncertain of the possible new career that’s developing in the baking competition. She’s just as likeable as Fen and Rupert, so I hope she returns in another novel.

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