My Jewish background has always defined who I am. My ancestors came from many parts of Eastern Europe, including Poland and Russia, which prompted an interest in Jewish social history. Growing up in the north, my academic husband and I eventually moved to Oxford with two young daughters closely followed by two sons. Somehow or other I managed to juggle home life with teacher training, eventually becoming an Advisory Teacher in Special Education (gypsy, fairground and circus children.) My decision to take early retirement enabled me to devote my energies to full-time writing.
I am a long-standing member of the SCBWI (Society of Children’s Book Writers and Illustrators) both in the USA and the UK. This membership inspired me to establish a small, successful Children’s Writers’ Group in Oxford which meets regularly to “talk shop”. Since I had worked extensively with Traveller children, one of my six published non-fiction books 'A Traveller Child', describes their lifestyle. Two of my other books are on Jewish subjects. 'Mazal Tov – A Jewish Wedding,' is based on my own personal experience and 'Angels, Prophets, Rabbis and Kings,' which is a selection of Jewish traditional tales and legends from the earliest times.
No Buts, Becky! is my first venture into fiction and was inspired by the stories of my grandmother’s era as well as the Jewish immigrant family of the East End of London. A visit to my grandmother would be sure to include wedding gossip about the success – or otherwise! – of the efforts of the Jewish matchmaker. This custom always intrigued me and sparked the original idea for my novel. No visit to my Grandma would be complete without tasting the delights of Jewish cooking especially eating a traditional slow cooked beef stew called ‘cholent’ which, as you will see, takes rather an important role in the novel!