Sunday, 20 October 2013

BOOK REVIEW - The Cheesemakers House by Jane Cable

Title -- The Cheesemaker's House
Author -- Jane Cable 

Publisher -- Troubador Publishing Ltd

Publication Date -- 1st October 2013


Inspired by a framed will found in her dream Yorkshire house, which had been built at the request of the village cheesemaker in 1726, Jane Cable discovered the historical aspect of her novel. Set near Northallerton in North Yorkshire, The Cheesemaker’s House is a page-turner that will have readers hooked instantly.

The novel follows the life of Alice Hart, who escapes to the North Yorkshire countryside to recover after her husband runs off with his secretary. Battling with loneliness but trying to make the best of her new start, she soon meets her neighbours, including handsome builder Richard Wainwright and kind caf√© owner Owen Maltby. As Alice employs Richard to start renovating the barn next to her house, all is not what it seems. Why does she start seeing Owen when he clearly isn’t there? Where – or when – does the strange crying come from? And if Owen is the village ‘charmer’, what exactly does that mean?

Cable’s characters are shrouded in mystery, particularly Owen, who had been in her head from the summer of 2008. Her father had an interest in folklore and she discovered ‘charmers’ in a book from his extensive library. Around the same time she created Alice through a short piece of fiction which became the original opening of the novel, and the rest of the story simply fell into place.

The Cheesemaker’s House won the Suspense & Crime category of The Alan Titchmarsh Show’s People’s Novelist competition, reaching the last four out of over a thousand entries.


Alice Hart moves into New Cottage; The Old Cheesemaker's House. The house is full of character but also has it's ghosts.

There were many heartwarming characters in this book. "Alice" who is the main character, comes across as a kind and caring person, who always thinks of others. The sort of girl you would like to have as a friend.

"Owen" is the mysterious coffee shop owner who seems to have many secrets but also a whole load of other issues too.

"Richard" is the handsome builder, who would love nothing more than to add Alice to his list of girlfriends, but at the same time is a good and helpful friend to her but seems to have something against Adam.

"Adam" is the gay and loveable co-owner of the coffee shop who Alice becomes very fond of, and finds easy to talk to.

They are four very different people, but the author blended them and their lives together so well.

I intially thought this was going to be a love story as a love triangle seemed to be forming, but how wrong I was. The book was full of mystery and intrigue; ghosts from the past mingling with the present and lots of unanswered questions. I loved the intrigue and the way the author kept you guessing through each twist and turn.

Who was the mysterious "ghost like" person who was the image of Owen? Who were all these ghostly figures people kept seeing in the village? Why couldn't everyone see them? Who's body was it that was buried in the barn? So many questions so much content in this enthralling read.

The book makes you keep reading and I couldn't put it down. It was an excellent read.


(Taken from Amazon)

I remember screaming - literally - when I got the email saying I had been long listed in The Alan Titchmarsh Show's People's Novelist competition. We were just about to head off to Cornwall to celebrate our wedding anniversary and it was quite a scramble to put together the information they needed. I spent the holiday in a kind of daze, hoping and praying I would be short listed. After a seemingly endless wait I received another email saying that I was.

I hastily re-arranged my work diary and arrived in London for the filming of the suspense and crime heat feeling absolutely scared stiff. I've worked in radio, so that would have been OK, but to be on television... have my face in millions of living rooms up and down the country... it didn't bear thinking about.

The Alan Titchmarsh team - and the man himself - were fantastic and made all four contestants feel very comfortable. We were the first of four heats and I was first up. We had rehearsed, but the AT Show is filmed 'as live' in front of a studio audience so there were no opportunities for retakes. Waiting behind the chipboard backdrop to make my entrance I was terrified but comforted myself this wasn't the X Factor so the judges would be nice to us. And they were - very complimentary about The Cheesemaker's House - and I breathed a huge sigh of relief.

I sat on an enormous fake book at the side of the stage while the others took their turn. To my surprise the judges' comments were not so good and for the first time I thought 'I'm in with a chance'. It was still the longest few seconds of my life as we waited for the announcement. I was through to the final.

So, two weeks later I went back to London. This time all of us were winners and within a hair's breadth of a publishing contract. This time we had to read an excerpt from our novels and by the end of the rehearsal I knew who had won - one writer was streets ahead of the rest of us. I sent a text to my husband with Madeleine Reiss's name.

Even after coming so close The Cheesemaker's House clearly needed improving and in the year after the competition I worked really hard to do so. Finally I was ready to publish and along came Matador. Now the leap of faith to discover if readers will like it too.

I think that's quite enough about me, but if you would like more information or to get in touch then please visit my website at


Twitter - @JaneCable

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