top of page
  • Writer's pictureAnnemarie Rawson


Updated: Aug 23, 2021

Steve and I are settling well here in the Hawke’s Bay and meeting some wonderful people and having a social life.

One such person is Lou Ward, co-owner of Wardini Books in Havelock North (and Napier). Lou and husband, Gareth, have created a delightful and unique bookshop that draws you in with it’s window displays and their passion for all genres. There is always someone browsing or paying at the counter for a little something special, so it’s no surprise that it won the 2020 New Zealand Bookshop of the Year award.

Recently, Lou interviewed me on Radio Kidnappers and we had a fun time reminiscing about Steve and my days in France, talking about My French Platter and how our story came about. Here’s the link, if you’d like to take a look and listen to the interview. I didn’t know it was going to be filmed so I’m not really dressed for the occasion!

Lou followed up this interview a month later, with a Meet The Author evening in the bookshop. That went off so well with 35-40 people coming to join in, have a glass of rosé and a bite to eat. There was standing room only! I got to chat with lots of lovely readers while signing books. So many of us have such a passion for France and all it contains and it was a joy to share that and hear their stories.

This is Lou introducing me - I’m the one in the multi-coloured dress with my mouth open! As usual ... always talking.

Many thanks to Sarah, the owner of Deliciosa, here in Havelock North, who sourced the delicious Fazi rosé for me. If you are new to the Bay, you must come and eat at Deliciosa and share a glass of something delicious with other ‘newbies’ as Sarah keeps a table free every Wednesday from 5.30pm so you can meet others. It has been great for us and is such a nice thing to do.

As a result of the publicity from Meet the Author evening, I was contacted by and subsequently met, Ian, the President of the Hawkes Bay Association of France. He has asked if I’d like to be a speaker at one of their events later in the year, so I’m looking forward to that too.

We’ve now joined the Association, booked in for the opening night of the French Film Festival here on 23 June, going to the monthly French film club movie next week and the monthly French-speaking soirée evenings. It’s all go!

Viva la France!

261 views5 comments
bottom of page