I was born in Warwickshire, read English at Cambridge and after spells in the theatre and in advertising, I got a job at the BBC. I had twelve very happy years at BBC World Service radio where I was a producer and reporter in the Features department and in Current Affairs. I travelled widely compiling documentaries in Central America, Australia, Africa and the Far East. I also wrote freelance articles for magazines and newspapers such as The Spectator, the Evening Standard, the Independent and the Daily Telegraph who, in 1997, commissioned me to write a comic, girl-about-town column, Tiffany Trott. Within a month of the first column appearing I'd been signed up by HarperCollins to turn Tiffany's adventures into a book. To my amazement HarperCollins then said they'd like another book, and another, and so somehow, without having set out to be a novelist, here I am.
In my novels self-deception is the main theme. That's why I write in the first person, because I love the fact that my heroine usually doesn't see what's really going on (or is pretending she doesn't) but the reader, gradually, does. So the reader is always one step ahead, seeing through the evident ambivalence of my heroine, or the naked guise. For writing in the first person opens up an ironic gap between what my heroine says and what she clearly feels, or between what she thinks is going on around her and what really is going on. By the end of the novel she either acknowledges, or is forced to face up to, the truth about who she truly is, or what she wants My books are all written with a combination of pathos and humour because that's true to life.
2004 - my fourth novel, 'Behaving Badly', was shortlisted for the Romantic Novel of the Year award.
2010 ' A Vintage Affair' was selected by over 100 Barnes and Noble booksellers to be the B & N Recommends: Main Selection title in June and July '10.
2011 - 'A Vintage Affair' was shortlisted by the American Libraries Association for their Reading List in the Women's Fiction category.
'Persuasion' - Jane Austen.
'A Fine Balance' - Rohinton Mistry.
'The Way We Live Now' - Anthony Trollope.
'Disgrace' - J M Coetzee.
'The Human Stain' - Phillip Roth