A couple of weeks ago I met up with the novelist, Kate Fenton, to chat about her latest book, The Time of Her Life.
It was one of those wet days that have become the norm this winter. We met first for a coffee before recording a podcast. And from the moment we peeled off our raincoats and dropped into our seats we did not stop chatting. Kate is one of those women that you instantly feel at home with, as if you have known her for years. She is warm, funny, and worldly, having experienced all the emotions that life puts us through. As the rain lashed down outside Kate and I were warmed up with the stories of her life – some humorous, some sad but all part of Kate.
It is these experiences and Kate’s love of Life (with a capital ‘L’) that ring throughout her latest novel, The Time of her Life.
Set in Yorkshire, where Kate lives with her husband, Ed, and is passionate about, it is a story that all of us can relate to. A story of everyday life with all the ups and downs, the emotions, the friendships and fallouts and ultimately the appreciation of all that we have. Family and friends are what make our worlds rotate and these sentiments emanate from Kate’s book.
I enjoyed this book so much as it was like curling up on the sofa, with a glass of wine and chatting to my own girlfriends. It felt so comfortable and the story is both honest and heartwarming.
We all have an Annie Stoneycroft or a Bernie or a Liz in our lives so this story is contemporary but with an old fashioned love of happy endings. Some have likened Kate’s previous books with those of Jane Austen – Kate would never be so bold as to put herself in the same class as this heroine of 18th century literature. However if you read one of Kate’s previous novels, Lions and Liquorice, you will not fail to notice a similarity with Pride and Prejudice albeit that the main roles have swapped sexes.
The Time of Her Life is a modern day ‘Emma’ and as that book has been made into a film 8 times we can only assume that we all continue to love romantic fiction.
Kate and I discuss in the podcast, that we recorded later that same day, this continuing love of romantic fiction, how other genres may come and go but we still love a ‘happy ever after’ ending.
The Time of Her Life reveals twists and turns in the story, it does not always run smoothly but then that is life as it is served up to us all.
To hear more about Kate’s life, growing up outside Manchester, her time at Oxford university, her career at the BBC, her 25 year marriage to Ian Carmichael the actor, and then falling in love again in her late 50’s, listen to the podcast below.
To purchase Kate’s book, The Time of Her Life, from Amazon which is published on 12th March, 2020 then click HERE.