There Are Boats on the Orchard

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by Maria C. McCarthy (with illustrations by Sara Fletcher)

Imagine pulling off the road at the height of Summer to a wooden stall at the mouth of an orchard, cherries dripping from the trees. A woman behind the stall shoulders a week-old child. A toddler sits in a playpen beneath the trees. You ask what is in the punnets. Merton Glories, each fruit a yin–yang of yellow and red. Early Rivers, purple red. Autumn brings bulldozers and bonfires, and all that remains is the rusted shell of a burnt-out car and a planning notice.

There are Boats on the Orchard chronicles seven years of living alongside the disappearing orchards of Kent.

PB. 36pp. Published exclusively by Cultured Llama and only available here. £7.00. Due July 2017.

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Maria C. McCarthy was born in Ewell, Surrey in 1959, and raised by Irish parents. Her Irish heritage features strongly in her poetry, stories and her columns for BBC Radio 4’s Home Truths (written and broadcast as Maria Bradley).  Her first poetry collection, strange fruits, was published by Cultured Llama in 2011. She has an MA with distinction in creative writing from the University of Kent.  Also by Maria C. McCarthy: strange fruits and As Long as it Takes. Her website is www.medwaymaria.co.uk

Sara Fletcher grew up in Kent, and now lives in the village of Halling, a few minutes’ walk from the River Medway. A chartered civil engineer with over twenty years of working for local authorities before setting up her own consultancy, she is also a zoology graduate with a passionate interest in the natural world. Having always enjoyed drawing and painting, as well as a variety of other creative activities, she was delighted to be offered the opportunity to collaborate with Maria McCarthy on There Are Boats on the Orchard.

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