Fresh FIction Box Not To Miss
Annabel Abbs | Exclusive Excerpt: MISS ELIZA’S ENGLISH KITCHEN
Author Guest / October 20, 2021

In spite of the fish vans that clatter through the town on their way to London and the hop pickers who arrive daily by wagon, Tonbridge does not have the hustle and bustle of Ipswich. This pleases Mother, who crows constantly about Tonbridge’s superior inhabitants and its superior visitors. And it is these that she has her ruthless gimlet eye upon: the well-dressed ladies and gentlemen who come to take the waters of our neighboring spa town, Tunbridge Wells, and are in need of superior rooms. Our rented home is newly built and has its name—Bordyke House—carved into the lintel. As befits a superior boardinghouse, it is spacious, well furnished, and situated well away from the town’s open drains. And yet it feels all wrong, like a poorly cut coat. Perhaps this is because Edgar has set sail to make his fortune in Mauritius, and Catherine and Anna have taken up positions as governesses—all of us fleeing gossip and disgrace—so it is only Mother and I rattling around here. Or perhaps it is because no amount of superiority can disguise our future as the landladies of a boardinghouse. We are in the morning room—yellow walls, armchairs upholstered in a shiny…

Beth Harbison | Exclusive Excerpt + Recipe: THE COOKBOOK CLUB
Author Guest / October 16, 2020

We’re pleased to share an exclusive excerpt from the upcoming novel THE COOKBOOK CLUB by Beth Harbison, in stores on October 20th, along with a delicious recipe and note from the book and author. You can find out more about Beth Harbison and links to pre-order her book below. Many thanks to William Morrow for this fun post!  *** “Oh, Margo.” Something about the pity in Margo’s mother’s voice made Margo feel even sorrier for herself even though she was a grown woman who’d gotten dumped, not a child.  “Do you need me to come home?” It was like when Margo was little and would hurt herself.  Somehow she could bear up until she got to her mother’s loving arms and then she’d lose it. That she called Maryland home, even though they’d moved south ten years ago just made it even more poignant. “I’ll be okay. I just need to get through this.” “You need your family.” She went to the pantry and pulled out a twenty-eight-ounce can of Wegmans San Marzano tomatoes. “Honestly, I’m not up for it. I don’t want to waste a visit on shock and misery, I’d rather you come when we can both enjoy…

Author Guest / June 12, 2020

My new novel, Miss Cecily’s Recipes for Exceptional Ladies, has two heroines–Kate Parker, 40 and on the verge of a break-up, and Cecily Finn, a 97-year-old grumpy but very funny old lady–bond over an unusual cookbook.  The cookbook, Thought for Food, contains more than just recipes.  It has menus for some of life’s most challenging occasions: “Dinner for the Man You Hope to Marry,” “Dinner for The Man You’re Trying to Bid Farewell To.”  Along with delicious recipes, the book has tips on how to survive the occasion, varying from the practical to the richly comic. Thought for Food was a real book published in 1957.  It was co-written by the real-life Cecily Finn, who was my grandma. Real-life Cecily was born in London’s East End in 1903.  Her family ran a candy and ice-cream store–which created her lifelong passion for food. My grandma had a beautiful older sister, May, and my great-grandpa Josef constantly told Cecily that because she lacked May’s beauty, she’d never find a husband, and so at 18, he forced her to become a teacher.  (The job would guarantee a secure pension.)  Cecily may not have shared May’s beauty, but she was warm, smart, funny, creative,…