About the Book
Fruit Woman is narrated by Helen Scutt, a quirky and naïve twenty-seven-year-old. The image of the Fruit Woman has appeared to Helen at important times in her life, particularly in relation to her own sexual and spiritual awakening. But only now, while on holiday with her extended family, does she get her first warning message from the Fruit Woman.
Set in the 1980s, Helen returns with her extended family, after a twelve year break, to spend a fortnight at their favourite holiday destination in Devon: Myrtle Cottages.
Due to join them for the second week of the holiday are: Helen’s old friend Bella, Bella’s brother Dominic, and Helen’s cousin Les.
But shortly after the family have arrived on holiday, Helen’s mother announces that she has also invited along someone from church for the second week of their holiday: Christine Wigg, a friend of the family, and victim of a rape several years before.
In the context of the family holiday, where games of cards, scatological worries, and deep discussions abound, the story centres on Helen’s anxieties over the second week’s ‘guest list’. She’s not seen Bella for years, she’s attracted to Dominic in spite of his religious beliefs, and she thinks its a bad idea for her mother to have invited Les, who was originally accused of Christine’s rape by her in-laws. Helen’s concerns trigger off all sorts of childhood and adolescent memories, but as her anxieties mount, can she make sense at last of what happened years before?
This is a short book at under 200 pages and is a pleasant and engaging read, nicely capturing the quirks of family life in the microcosm of this family holiday. Helen is a likeable narrator, who shares her worries freely as she thinks about the second week of her holiday while reflecting back on the stories of the new guests, thus sharing these with the reader. The anticipation of the arrival of Dominic brings nervous excitement, while the notion of Les and Christine coming face to face casts a shadow. As the characters arrive for their holiday they bring with them new information for Helen which change things immeasurably for her and adds a nice twist to this coming of age story.
Overall a very nice read set in Devon which had an air of familiarity too it, reminiscent of those quintessentially British summer holidays, with day trips and board games, coughs and colds and close comfort living all in the guise of a holiday!
About the Author
Kate Rigby has been writing for several decades. She realized her unhip credential were mounting so decided to write about it.
However she’s not completely unhip. Her punk novel, Fall Of The Flamingo Circus was published by Allison and Busby (1990) and by Villard (American hardback 1990). Skrev Press published her novels Seaview Terrace (2003 Sucka! (200$) and Break Point (2006) and other shorter work has appeared in Skrev’s avant garde magazine Texts’ Bones including a version of her satirical novella Lost the Plot.
Kate Rigby – Website http://kjrbooks.yolasite.com/
Special Thanks to Anne Cater for organising this blog tour and arranging an E Book version of Fruit Woman.
Check out the rest of the Blog Tour here-