"With France I have come up trumps”

Jane Hanks talks to author Carol Drinkwater about the joys of living in France

Carol Drinkwater is best known as the actress who played Mrs Herriot in the television adaptation of the James Herriot books All Creatures Great and Small, but she is also a prolific writer with 26 books to her name. These are both fiction and non-fiction including memoirs set on her olive farm in the south of France. Aged 69, she is still writing.

Her latest book, The Lost Girl, published by Penguin and set in France, draws on two contemporary themes; the November 2015 terror attacks in Paris and sex attacks in the film industry. She is married to French TV producer, Michel Noll.

Q: When and why did you come to France?

I came to France about 30 years ago. I met a Frenchman in Australia, and he asked me to marry him. He invited me to the Cannes Film Festival and while he was busy working, I was looking everywhere for my house by the sea.

On his first weekend off we found a dilapidated ruin, which over the years we have done up and that is the olive farm, where all the Olive Farm books I have written are set. ...

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