Having met lovely Cathy Bramley a few times I’m thrilled to welcome her to Linda’s Book Bag to celebrate her latest book The Lemon Tree Cafe today. I love Cathy’s writing and have previously reviewed another of her books, Comfort and Joy, here. Cathy also featured when her book The Plumberry School of Comfort Food was released and you can find that post here. Today we’re talking afternoon tea!
The Lemon Tree Cafe was published on 24th August 2017 by Corgi, part of Transworld, and is available for purchase here.
The Lemon Tree Cafe
The Lemon Tree Cafe was originally published as a four-part serial. This is the complete story in one package.
When Rosie Featherstone finds herself unexpectedly jobless, the offer to help her beloved Italian grandmother out at the Lemon Tree Cafe – a little slice of Italy nestled in the rolling hills of Derbyshire – feels like the perfect way to keep busy.
Surrounded by the rich scent of espresso, delicious biscotti and juicy village gossip, Rosie soon finds herself falling for her new way of life. But she is haunted by a terrible secret, one that even the appearance of a handsome new face can’t quite help her move on from.
Then disaster looms and the cafe’s fortunes are threatened . . . and Rosie discovers that her nonna has been hiding a dark past of her own. With surprises, betrayal and more than one secret brewing, can she find a way to save the Lemon Tree Cafe and help both herself and Nonna achieve the happy endings they deserve?
Cathy Bramley’s ideal afternoon tea at The Lemon Tree Café
When I was asked to be part of the tour for The Lemon Tree Cafe I asked Cathy, “Which three real or fictional guests would you invite to afternoon tea at The Lemon Tree Café and why, and what cakes and sandwich fillings and cakes would you choose?” This is what Cathy told me:
Oh Linda, what a great question! I’ve never been asked this before and as soon as I read your request I instantly thought of how interesting it would be to get three characters from books together at the café.
The worlds I create seem very real to me and I often think back to Wickham Hall and The Plumberry School of Comfort Food and the allotments at Ivy Lane. I can picture the settings very clearly and I wonder about the characters. (By now half of your readers will be thinking that I’ve gone a bit loopy…!)
So, back to afternoon tea. I’d love to get Holly from Wickham Hall, Verity from Plumberry and Tilly Parker from Ivy Lane around a table together to have a good old chat. None of these characters cross over in my books, however, Verity is good friends with Rosie who runs The Lemon Tree Café; they were housemates in The Plumberry School of Comfort Food. Verity also makes a cameo appearance in The Lemon Tree Café.
Holly is now living at Wickham Hall with Benedict Fortescue, Lord and Lady Fortescue’s son and I’ve love to hear how she has adapted to living with her aristocratic in-laws! I think she’d have some great stories to tell.
The last time we saw Verity was in my Christmas novella, Comfort and Joy. She and chef boyfriend Tom had just moved into their first cottage together. I think wedding bells were on the cards for those two and I’d like to find out if what they are up to.
Tilly Parker, the star of Ivy Lane is probably my favourite character form all my books, she had had such a tough time and fingers crossed things are going well for her in her new life. If I could shoehorn Tilly into every book, I would!
The menu at The Lemon Tree Café has plenty of delicious things on it. Juliet makes a delicious lemon drizzle cake and Lia, Rosie’s sister is a very good cook too. Holly isn’t much of a cook although she really enjoys eating what Jenny Plum cooks at the Wickham Hall Coach House Café. She’d probably choose Jenny’s special marchpane tart made of an Elizabethan version of marzipan. Verity loves fish finger sandwiches although they’re probably an acquired taste and might look a bit odd on a three-tier cake stand! She did learn to make bread though, so she might bring some delicious rye bread with her. This would be gorgeous with some smoked salmon sandwiches. Now that Tilly has an allotment she cooks lots of things with fresh vegetables in it like courgette cake. However, her go-to recipe has always been chocolate chip cookies, so there would have to be plenty of those.
So there you are, Linda, my guests and their menu – I so wish this could happen!
So do I Cathy, and I’ll have to ask Tilly for that courgette recipe as I’ve been inundated with them on my allotment this year!
About Cathy Bramley
Cathy is the author of the best-selling romantic comedies Ivy Lane, Appleby farm, Conditional Love, Wickham Hall and The Plumberry School Of Comfort Food. She lives in a small Nottinghamshire village with her family and Pearl, the Cockerpoo.
Her recent career as a full-time writer of light-hearted romantic fiction has come as somewhat of a lovely surprise after spending eighteen years running her own marketing agency. However, she has always been an avid reader, hiding her book under the duvet and reading by torchlight.
You’ll find all Cathy’s lovely books here.
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