“The year isn’t over yet, but we had to round up our favourite books of 2017 so far. These books have made us laugh and cry, and have kept us up late many a night.”_ Marie Claire South Africa
In some very good company, and topping this auspicious list at number one, was Bone Meal For Roses! Here’s what they had to say:
“This Johannesburg author has recently published her second novel about a young girl who is rescued from her abusive mother. Taken to her grandmother’s farm to recover, Poppy grows up and struggles to shake off her traumatic past. Bone Meal For Roses is a captivating book that taps into themes of memory, pain and healing. We loved this emotionally-charged book, it’s a perfect choice to add to your reading list.”
It was a picture in my mind that wouldn’t let me be…
Her features were unclear, and her shape was vague, but still, I kept seeing her. The girl. She was young, teetering on the brink of puberty, unprepared for the strangeness and power of her own upcoming adolescence, and utterly alone in an isolated garden. I kept being drawn to the image of this person, who seemed to have taken up residence in my head, and slowly, around her, questions began to form.
Books have been around for ages. Pretty much as far back as people have been communicating with one another. Even before the printing press was invented, humans have found a way to share their thoughts by scratching on stone or painting on papyrus. Considering this, and the fact that there are so many of them, we often forget just how astonishing books actually are. They’re powerful in a way that is entirely unique. Continue Reading
Bone Meal for Roses is a story about becoming a strong, whole person in spite of childhood trauma…
Despite there being so many rich and diverse South African locations to pick from, so many moods and weathers to contain the story I wanted to tell, picking the spot was a no-brainer…
This interview about my writing life was published in the Sunday Times on the 13th November 2016.
Setting the scene for Bone Meal for Roses
Winter vinyards . The Breede Valley . Western Cape . South Africa
I’d been longing to write a book set in the Breede Valley. There’s a unique magic in the way the arid Karroo exists alongside immaculate vineyards and fruit orchards that makes it the perfect setting for a story about a half-wild child who grows up to become both strange and powerful.
‘LemonPoppy Seed Cake’ was published in the Sunday Express in the UK on the 2nd of October 2016.
The cake is going to fix everything. It’s going to be lemony-sour-sweet with a hint of almond, so that when THEY bite into it, they’ll think of the smell of summer gardens after rain.
In some cases, I’ve been guilty of drawing them out and hammering them so thin that they dissipate in disgust. That being said, the opportunity to liken the launch of my new novel (which, even in its title, Bone Meal for Roses, includes a reference to growing things), to the opening of the first, spring sweet-pea bloom in the flowerbed outside the window where I write, is just too darn tempting to pass up…