The Orchard Girls
London, 2004. Frankie didn’t always have it easy. Growing up motherless, she was raised by her grandmother, who loved her – and betrayed her. For years, the rift between them seemed irreparable. But when their paths suddenly cross again, Frankie is shocked to realise that her grandmother is slowly losing control of her memory. There is a darkness in her past that won’t stay buried – secrets going back to wartime that may have a devastating effect on Frankie’s own life.
Somerset, 1940. When seventeen-year-old Violet’s life is ripped apart by the London Blitz, she runs away to join the Women’s Land Army, wanting nothing more than to leave her grief behind. But as well as the terror of enemy air raids, the land girls at Winterbourne Orchards face a powerful enemy closer to home. One terrible night, their courage will be put to the test – and the truth of what happened must be kept hidden, forever . . .
Purchase Link – https://bit.ly/OrchardGirls
Author Bio –
Nikola Scott started out in book publishing and worked as a crime fiction editor in America and England for many years. Turning her back on blood-spattered paperback covers and dead bodies found in woods, she sat down at her kitchen table one day to start her first novel — and hasn’t stopped writing since. Obsessed with history and family stories (‘How exactly did you feel when your parents gave the house to your brother?’) she is well-known – and feared – for digging up dark secrets at dinner parties and turning them into novels.
Her first two books, My Mother’s Shadow and Summer of Secrets, have both been international bestsellers and were translated widely around the world. Nikola lives in Frankfurt with her husband and two boys (and a kitchen table).
Once a month, Nikola sends out a popular newsletter about writing, reading, book news, freebies and loads of therapeutic baking. Join in here if you’d love to be a part of it all: bit.ly/NikolaScottNews
For more info on Nikola, visit her website at www.nikolascott.com
Social Media Links –
https://www.instagram.com/nikolascottauthor/https://www.pinterest.de/nikolascott/ Celebrating apples, orchards and The Orchard Girls with a very special apple cake My new novel, The Orchard Girls, is set among a group of Land Girls at a 1940 Somerset apple orchard estate. One of my favourite things about writing that book was the research on orchards, the seasons of apple trees, the ways the fruit was harvested and what happened to it afterwards. Somerset apple orchards have such a rich history and tradition, and as I delved into that part of the novel it was lovely to see how many apple growers are now reviving old businesses or starting anew, using some of the old ways and wisdoms. The only thing that was missing from the novel was a character actually cooking the apples. For the life of me, I couldn’t quite persuade my heroine Violet (who runs away from her upper class London life to join the Land Girls at Winterbourne, my fictional apple orchard) nor the Land Girls (who are trying to survive farming life and something much darker threatening to tear them apart) to make their way into the kitchen and start baking – much as I love novels that include baking and cake-making! But in the spirit of all things apples, trees and orchard living, I’m sharing one of my favourite apple cake recipes with you today. It’s called “Krimmel”, a German cousin of the English “crumble”, and it was handed down to my mum by my German grandmother. I think all families have a family recipe that was such a natural part of growing up that you’re always taken aback when other people have never come across it. This is such a cake. It’s not new, not remotely fancy, adaptable a million and one ways and always delicious. There is practically nothing you can mess up with this cake, trust me, in fact, the messier and craggier the crumb-clumps, the more moreish the whole thing becomes. You can use any add-on (nuts or oats), any additional flavouring (rum raisins, anyone?) and, really, any fruit that decently holds up inside a pie (blackberries, plums, that kind of thing). Personally, I am a purist about my Krimmel and just go with the basic recipe below, but by all means, be bold and take this new and adventurous places. My mum would be proud of you. Krimmel: A sort of German Apple Crumble 400 g flour 200 g sugar 250 g butter 100 g ground almonds vanilla and / or cinnamon to taste ca. 5 Apples (my mum uses Granny Smith or Braeburn) A spritz of lemon Preheat the oven to 180 degrees and butter & flour a 23 cm springform or other cake form. For smaller forms adjust the amount accordingly. Peel, core and cut the apples into smallish, flattish chunks. Toss through with a spritz of lemon. Combine flour, sugar, ground almonds, cinnamon and / or vanilla to taste. Drop the butter in pieces across the surface and work the whole thing into crumbs and clumps. Divide this amorphous crumb mass roughly into two thirds and one third. Pat the bigger portion into the tin, creating a layer that is still a nubbly with clumps and crumbs but works as a base for the fruit. Spread the apples across the surface and dot — messy is not only fine but recommended – with the remaining crumbs. Bake in the oven for 45-50 minutes. If it gets too brown before the time is up, lay a lose piece of foil over the top but don’t tuck it around. As anything in life, this only improves with whipped cream or vanilla ice cream slathered across the top, but it can absolutely hold its own exactly the way it is described here and it remains delicious for a few days. Enjoy! About Nikola Nikola Scott worked in book publishing for many years before she sat down at her kitchen table one day to start her first novel. Obsessed with history and family stories (‘How exactly did you feel when your parents gave the house to your brother?’) she is well-known – and feared – for digging up dark secrets at dinner parties and turning them into novels. Her first two books, My Mother’s Shadow and Summer of Secrets, have both been international bestsellers and were translated widely around the world. Her newest novel, The Orchard Girls, is out now. Once a month, Nikola sends out a popular newsletter about writing, reading, book news, freebies and loads of therapeutic baking. Join in here if you’d love to be a part of it! Visit Nikola’s website at www.nikolascott.com or find her on social media: Facebook: @NikolaScottAuthor Twitter: @nikola_scott Instagram: @nikolascottauthor