Most women desire a break from the relentless grind of early motherhood, and while some find solace in the escapism that books, television and movies provide, one multi-tasking Melbourne mother, Anne Freeman of Northcote, tackled the problem in a different way, penning her debut novel.
‘After the birth of my second child, I realised that I’d put all my own writing dreams on hold, as if I was waiting for my life to begin when the children were older. That’s when I started writing Returning to Adelaide in the Google Docs App on my iPhone. I only ever sat down while breastfeeding my daughter, so, it was the only way I could do it – cradling her with one hand and typing out my novel with the other. The rest of the time, I buzzed around caring for two under three,’ the multi-award finalist explains.
The story follows the life of Adelaide Jones, a wife and mother who, when her perfect suburban life begins to unravel, is forced on a journey of self-discovery to the Greek island of Ikaria. ‘I wanted to create a situation that made it not only acceptable but necessary for a mother travel to the other side of the world, solo,’ says Anne. ‘I wrote it at a stage in my life when a trip to Kmart alone felt like Club Med, so being forced into a trip to the Greek Islands was a fantasy situation!’
What follows is once-in-a-lifetime adventure which ultimately reignites Adelaide’s tenacity.
Book blogger Brooke Crawford describes it as, ‘a beautiful celebration of strong women, and the power of reconnecting with our passions and remembering who we were before the metamorphosis of motherhood. There’s delicious romance, a breathtaking setting, and heart-warming friendships. I laughed, I cried, I raged and I cheered!’
Returning to Adelaide was a finalist in the 2021 Romance Writers of Australia Valerie Parv Award and the 2021 Hawkeye Publishing Manuscript Development Prize.
It will be released by Hawkeye Publishing 21 March 2022. Advance copies are available