Not just another romance, but a story of escapism, coincidences, friendship, luck and most of all… love.
Chickens Eat Pasta is the tale of how a young Englishwoman starts a new life after watching a video showing a chicken eating spaghetti in a mediaeval hill village in central Italy.
“Here I was, 26 years old, alone and numb with boredom at the prospect of a future which until recently had seemed to be just what I wanted.”
Unlike some recent bestsellers, this is not simply an account of a foreigner’s move to Italy, but a love story written from the unusual perspective of both within and outside of the story. As events unfold, the strong storyline carries with it a rich portrayal of Italian life from the inside, with a supporting cast of memorable characters. Along the way, the book explores and captures the warmth and colour of Italy, as well as some of the cultural differences – between England and Italy, but also between regional Italian lifestyles and behaviour. It is a story with a happy ending. The author and her husband are still married, with three children, who love the old house on the hill (now much restored) almost as much as she does.
Chickens Eat Pasta is Clare’s autobiography, and ultimately a love story – with the house itself and with the man that Clare met there and went on to marry. If you yearn for a happy ending, you won’t be disappointed. It’s a story that proves anything is possible if you only try.
UK Audiobook – https://www.amazon.co.uk/Chickens-Eat-Pasta/dp/B07BYLZX3X
US Audiobook – https://www.amazon.com/Chickens-Eat-Pasta/dp/B07CBJRG9C
MY INTERVIEW WITH THE AUTHOR!
When did you know that you wanted to be an author?
Well it wasn’t so much of a case of always knowing that I wanted to be an author, as having this compelling urge to tell a particular story. And that story was my own, which as anyone who has read Chickens Eat Pasta will know is rather an unusual one. I knew fairly soon that this was something I should write about, and I did make a start more than once. But then things got in the way, and it sat in a drawer for a very long time, before I finally pulled it out and finished it.
What inspired you to write this book?
I am and always have been a journalist, and I soon realised that this was a really cracking story, even as it was unfolding. Without wanting to ruin it for any of your readers, one day when I was in my mid-twenties I rather rashly, with no preparation whatsoever, got on a plane from England and bought an old ruin in a very remote part of central Italy where I knew absolutely no one. And if that wasn’t enough, I gave up a very promising career as a reporter to move there, and of course the salary that went with it, even though I had no means of supporting myself, and no one to bail me out if things went wrong. Quite apart from writing about the adventure of the move itself, and everything else that went with it, including the extraordinary people I met, the house itself soon began to exert a powerful pull on me, which inspired me even further. Much of the book was written there, though I’m glad to say it is now considerably more comfortable than when I first bought it, when it barely had a roof, and absolutely no heating!
If you could sell this book in one sentence what would it be?
I would describe my book as the (true) love story of a young Englishwoman who travelled to Italy after watching a video of some unusual chickens, and found her life changed forever by new friends and a compelling romance.
What are you up to next?
That’s a very good question! I’m happy to say that many of those who have read my book have asked me for a sequel, and I certainly haven’t ruled out the idea. But as I soon discovered, writing a book is an incredibly time consuming experience, and I still have a living to earn as a journalist. In a sense, Chickens Eat Pasta seems like a light read, but it took ages to get right, and I rewrote it five times before I was satisfied. Also, there is a part of me that would very much like to write a novel, and I might just do that.
Who is your biggest inspiration?
My three children. Chickens Eat Pasta is dedicated to them, and I wrote it very much with them in mind. They’ve grown up spending most weekends and every summer in that house I bought on a whim, but although they know many of the characters from the village, they didn’t know the whole story. Perhaps unsurprisingly, all three of them have a bond with the house that is nearly, though not quite, as strong as mine. And fortunately, each of them greatly enjoyed reading the book – at least they said they did!
ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Clare Pedrick is a British journalist who studied Italian at Cambridge University before becoming a reporter. She went on to work as the Rome correspondent for the Washington Post and as European Editor of an international features agency. She still lives in Italy with her husband, whom she met in the village where she bought her house.
Read her blog about life in Umbria here