Hoera, ik heb de vertaalrechten aangekocht van Sally Andrew’s roman ‘Recipes for Love and Murder: a Tannie Maria Mystery‘! Deze roman verschijnt in november 2015 bij onder andere Canongate in Engeland, Ecco in de VS en Text in Australie (en in Frankrijk, italie, israel en nog veel meer landen), en ook in Zuid-Afrika, want daar woont de schrijfster en speelt het verhaal zich af. Jullie moeten nog een klein jaartje wachten op de Nederlandse vertaling, maar dan kunnen jullie ook volop genieten van deze heerlijke roman / culi-detective.
Tannie* Maria (*literally Auntie, the respectful Afrikaans address for a woman older than you, not necessarily a relative) is our irresistible narrator, a woman of hearty appetite and formidable culinary skills, who writes a recipe column for her local paper, The Karoo Gazette. A middle-aged widow who once suffered beatings at the hands of her late husband, she tells us that “it was only when I discovered what bad company my husband was that I realized what good company food can be”.
When The Gazette insists on replacing her recipe page with an Agony Aunt column, Tannie Maria discovers she has a gift for helping people to deal with their heartaches and confront their fears – with just the right recipe in the mix every time. You’ll cheer for the shy mechanic who ‘can’t even boil an egg’ (to begin with…), and for all the lonely and sad and frustrated people who learn about food and life and love as Tannie Maria responds to them in her increasingly popular column. Then Tannie Maria receives a series of letters from a vulnerable woman, Martine, who is plotting to leave her abusive husband for the woman she loves. When Martine is murdered, Tannie Maria and her feisty young reporter colleague Jessie (‘The Girl with the Gecko Tattoo’) can’t resist being drawn into the investigation, despite the best efforts of handsome Detective Henk Kannemeyer (he of the impressive chestnut moustache) to keep them out of harm’s way. Soon there is a lot more at stake than just the perfect buttermilk chocolate cake…