petite anglaise

March 21, 2008


Filed under: book stuff — petiteanglaiseparis @ 9:45 am

I’d like to say a heartfelt thank you to everyone who turned out (in the freezing cold) to listen to me read at WH Smiths last night. It was somewhat unnerving giving a reading in front of so many people (120! Wow!) but I ended up thoroughly enjoying myself and I’m eternally grateful to you all for laughing in the right places.

For those who couldn’t make it, I signed a sizeable stack of copies before I left and these may be procured from WH Smiths at your leisure (and possibly posted to you if you live elsewhere in France).

Sadly, my camera was on the blink and I’m gutted I forgot to ask The Boy to bring his and play the role of official snapper.

But I did happen to notice a few flashbulbs going off, so if you have photographic evidence you’re willing to share, I’d love to see it. You can mail snaps to the usual address, or add photos to my facebook page. I’ll pop anything I receive up on flickr and link to it from here.

And was it just my imagination, or did my accent start off BBC posh and gradually veer off in a northern direction?


  1. I’m very glad it went well and am GUTTED to have missed it, both to cheer you on and perhaps even make contact with other Paris-based bloggers, whom I’m sure were out in force last night! However, last night I was drinking gins and tonics in the oh-so-colonial surroundings of the Windamere Hotel in Darjeeling, so could only be with you in spirit…

    Comment by Passementerie — March 21, 2008 @ 10:00 am

  2. Ah sadly I couldn’t make it, even if I had registered! I can’t wait to see you flickr pics

    Comment by LN — March 21, 2008 @ 10:37 am

  3. I had problem with my own TadPole so couldn’t make it ,(

    Will go this afternoon to get an Signed copy ,)

    If you need an pseudo photo reporter for future reading let me know !

    Comment by Thierry_J — March 21, 2008 @ 10:42 am

  4. And where was Tadpole during all of thses festivities? Watching a DVD alone I suppose. Tsk.


    Comment by suziboo — March 21, 2008 @ 11:23 am

  5. Are there two different covers to the book? Mine has the one with the pushchair.
    Nothing wrong with a northern accent nowadays, although Wilfred Pickles was ditched by the BBC for his.
    Mine only appears when I am angry – which of course almost never happens.

    Comment by Pat — March 21, 2008 @ 11:29 am

  6. Fickle accents! Sadly I missed it, but it wouldn’t surprise me. I find myself adopting all sorts of personae if only for 1/2 a sentence!

    I’ve not bought the book yet (it’s on my list!) but I’ve been looking for it whenever I chance by bookshops. I came across it in Woking! On prominent display, you are!

    Comment by clarissa — March 21, 2008 @ 11:31 am

  7. Have written WH Smith Rue de Rivoli to request one of those potential leftover signed copies – thanks for the heads-up. Didn’t your hand hurt from signing, in the end? As gratifying as it may be.

    Comment by Alethea — March 21, 2008 @ 11:51 am

  8. Dear Cath,
    I’m Elsa, a Parisian girl living in London since 2001!
    I first saw your book in sainsburys and thought “oh another one of chick lit….”, but then read an article about Petite Anglaise in Marie Claire, and went to buy the book straight away the next day. Since then, am devoring it, I even left a samba party last night to go back home in bed and read !
    Am taking the eurostar tonight to go to Paris for the bank holiday week end, and am happy to read about all the places which are familiar to me in Paris, Café Charbon (I also like the food and athmosphere at Chez Justine just across the street), le parc des Buttes Chaumont, I used to live nearby…
    Please have a look on my blog, and I’d be glad to meet up in Paris at a soirée de bloggeuses ! do you know Violette “sois belle et parle”? she makes me laugh so much ! she ‘s very popular in the blogosphère!
    Good luck for everything.
    ps: I’ve lost my job twice in the past 6 months, so I know how it is :)
    Elsa, 31 years old

    Comment by Elsa — March 21, 2008 @ 1:09 pm

  9. Thank you for signing all our books so patiently and thoughtfully- I thought your accent was consistent and the readings were really well chosen and well delivered- congrats on all fronts!


    Comment by Marianne in Paris — March 21, 2008 @ 5:09 pm

  10. Do you think that inference of the text could be change by altering accent? Suddenly your words could have a whole new life if spoken in say, Russki-style or Scottish?

    Just a thought…!

    Loving your work,

    G.I.M x

    Comment by girlwiththemask — March 21, 2008 @ 5:54 pm

  11. Just wondering… will you be doing any traveling to do readings? Perhaps, to the United States? I just moved back from Prague, and then over to Los Angeles, and I’d be thrilled to go hear you read if you make it over!

    Comment by Nikki — March 21, 2008 @ 6:22 pm

  12. It was a pleasure. I’m no expert at accents but you certainly sounded schoolgirlish, hesitant, and totally adorable. I was so happy to be there for you. Sorry I couldn’t stay, but you knows the knows the know of my meandering whereabouts. Bravo!

    p.s. – did you see that Clothilde was there? She had to sneak out early though. I think that’s the first time I’ve seen the both of you in the same room since that infamous night at Klein Holland.

    Comment by nardac — March 21, 2008 @ 8:31 pm

  13. your accent definitely got northern at the end. it was brilliant. like you started off proper posh secretary and finished as you. my accent is all over the place. my mother says i sound like a foreigner! need to find the real me, the lovely lilting gentle scottish accent i once had

    Comment by emma — March 21, 2008 @ 8:52 pm

  14. Me thinks you were drinking some wine at the reading. When I drink my accent morphs from “Canadian” (whatever that is) to Yorkshire where I was born. The more I drink the more Yorkshire I sound. My accent also becomes more English when I am either reading outload; talking on the phone to my mother or grandmother; or explaining something to my 3-year-old daughter.

    Comment by Zoe — March 21, 2008 @ 9:16 pm

  15. ther’s nowt wrong wit’ a accent

    Comment by Posh int Harrogate — March 22, 2008 @ 1:09 am

  16. I think your soft northern accent is lovely!!My long gone Brummie one starts to come back after a few days in the area and apparently came out sometimes when I was doing the P.A’s in my airline crew days.”Barth” sounds too posh and bath too flat so I end up switching between both.Occasionally I do an exaggerated Brummie accent to make my French children laugh(they already laugh sometimes at my English accent when I speak French)!!
    I’m in no hurry to read your book as I’m enjoying the anticipation and firmly intend to read it when my kids are with Mamie,and I’ve just a glass of wine or a jar of Nutella to keep me company.Bliss!!

    Comment by Carol — March 22, 2008 @ 1:31 am

  17. It was a great opportunity to put an actual voice and face to the blog. It somehow makes the blog more human and real, which I guess was the point.

    Thanks much. It was a great reading.

    Comment by Brittany — March 22, 2008 @ 1:42 am

  18. Hi,I am living in another country, it is my first time to visit your blog ,I would like to know what is the content of your book “Petite Anglaise”,what message will the book deliver?
    Moreover, is that book sold overseas?

    Comment by ao.roamer — March 22, 2008 @ 5:05 pm

  19. ao. roamer: why not just buy the book? Amazon will provide.

    Comment by Pat — March 22, 2008 @ 7:31 pm

  20. Petite: Thanks for signing my book! I have friends in Paris this spring, so I had them go to the signing. They got there early (and apparently offered you a macaroon??). Anyway, I’m the “Kathleen” for whom you signed a book. I can’t wait to read it, once the Post gets it here! I’m so glad things went well.

    Kat :)

    Comment by Kat — March 22, 2008 @ 8:00 pm

  21. I am ashamed to report that there was some Petite coverage in The Independent last weekend but it accidentally got binned before one of us (me!) could read it.

    Comment by Brennig — March 22, 2008 @ 9:37 pm

  22. It was so great to see you and hear you reading your own words. I know that it will add so much more to my enjoyment of the book. I left with encouragement to begin my own life as a writer. Bonne courage on the journey of your next book. We are all anxiously awaiting :)

    Comment by Connie — March 22, 2008 @ 10:33 pm

  23. Thank you, it was lovely to “meet” you and hear you reading your words.
    Your book is as good as your blog and I am looking forward to your second one.
    BTW it is the first time I am posting, though I am a regular reader.

    Comment by domee — March 23, 2008 @ 12:39 pm

  24. You had a great interview article in the Weekly Telegraph. Fun and a nice photograph.

    Best of luck with the book!

    Comment by Bill — March 24, 2008 @ 6:37 am

  25. I’ve enjoyed reading all the interviews that I’ve found. Really makes me want to visit Paris again too!

    Comment by Babycakes — March 24, 2008 @ 11:52 am

  26. Hi. Just ordered your book and can’t wait to read it.
    Intrigued by the different reviews so thought I would make up my own mind. :)

    Comment by tache — March 24, 2008 @ 5:41 pm

  27. You are an inspiration to so many people. My wife has been blogging for a few years
    and always tells me about your story as a blogger and about your writing, which of course makes it so successful.

    Thanks for your blogs. We’ve ordered the book.

    Comment by Karl — March 24, 2008 @ 8:32 pm

  28. Your accent did get a little northern by the end, but that’s a GOOD thing – I’m a Doncaster girl and my accent slips around too. Nothing wrong with going back to your roots!
    Great reading and well done for smiling all evening, it must be hard to keep that up the whole time!

    Comment by Paris Lights — March 24, 2008 @ 11:05 pm

  29. Book just arrived from AmazonUk, I am going on a cruise for a nice long week to the islands and I bought the book just for the trip. It is all I can do not to grab it and read the whole thing tonight! Love the blog, know I’ll love the book.

    Comment by camille — March 25, 2008 @ 2:12 am

  30. You are going to do an audiobook aren’t you? Not abridged if you do. You have a nice voice. It would be a smash in America. Film rights would follow!

    Comment by Eats Wombats — March 25, 2008 @ 8:55 am

  31. Now I am back in the land of the living (returned to work this morning after 2 months off to learn how to be a Dad), I will get your book ordered…

    Comment by Jonathan — March 25, 2008 @ 12:11 pm

  32. I Wish I could have attended your book signing, but I live in Montana. My Belle Mère, who lives in Paris, was informed about your signing when she picked up a copy for me two weeks ago. She was unable to attend because of her health. I look forward to receiving it any day. I am excited to read the English version instead of the American. We Americans devour your language.

    Comment by Shannon — March 27, 2008 @ 4:12 am

  33. Another vote for an audiobook with Petite reading. On the other hand, I have seen and heard enough clips that a film with someone else playing Petite would be strange. Does Petite have secret acting talents?

    Comment by pierre l — March 27, 2008 @ 7:51 am

  34. Wish I could have been there! All the best in your wonderful writing!

    Oh, running out of exclamation points!!!!!


    Comment by Bill — March 31, 2008 @ 7:20 am

RSS feed for comments on this post.

Sorry, the comment form is closed at this time.

Blog at

%d bloggers like this: