Monday, July 11, 2011

Be Careful What You Wish For...

...or you might get it, goes the old saying. My grandmother was cook in an aristocratic household back in the nineteen twenties. Her finest moment was when she was presented to the Duke and Duchess of York (later King George VI and Queen Elizabeth, of The King's Speech fame) after a formal dinner. There was no doubt Gran was good enough to be given the title Chef these days, and at one stage I was keen to follow in her footsteps. Then I discovered how long the hours are when you work in the hospitality business. It wouldn't have left me with either the time or the energy to write, so I soon gave up that idea.
In my July Presents Extra release,  The Count's Challenge, heroine Gwen has no illusions, but a lot of determination. Despite a terrible setback, she is going to make a success of her restaurant in the South of France if it kills her. Aristocratic Etienne isn't going to let things get that far, but her independent streak means he can be nothing more than a sleeping partner in her business - until a shocking discovery makes them both reassess their lives and dreams. Gwen was only too glad to escape from her large and boisterous family back home in Wales and follow her dreams. Feeling isolated and alone, she is too proud to reveal her true feelings to Etienne until it's almost too late. But he has secrets of his own...
I thoroughly enjoyed working The Count's Challenge as it is sheer, sun-drenched escapism full of nightingales and champagne. I hope you enjoy reading it as much as I enjoyed writing it! For a chance to win signed copies and other goodies, visit my website, for details of how to enter my Summer Competition. Good luck!


  1. Hi Christina. What a great period of history for your Grandma to be in, she must have some fascinating stories. I headed over to your website and the description of the book sounds great and have put it on my to be read list :)

  2. It's lovely to hear from you, TashNz. Yes, Gran was full of stories: it's amazing to think how much life has changed in such a relatively short time. All the work had to be done by hand in those days, and the most powerful food processor was a good sharp knife.
    Thanks for commenting, and I hope you enjoy 'The Count's Challenge'.
    Best wishes

  3. Hi Christina,
    Your gran sounds wonderful. And yes, haven't things changed in the kitchen along with everywhere else? And yet we are busier and more time poor than ever.
    Etienne sounds as delicious as Gwen's cooking!

  4. Hi Melanie, thanks for commenting. Isn't it funny how computers once promised to give us lots more leisure time and paperless offices, yet we're still waiting for both?

  5. Christina, you had me hooked when you mentioned a restaurant in the south of France. Spice that up with a lovely romance and it sounds like a real winner! Looking forward to this one.

  6. Thanks, Annie. I hope you enjoy it. This was a lovely book to write: 'France' and 'romance' - even the words go together well!