Moving On: How one divorcee created a hotly-tipped novel

Family | 16 Dec 2013 5

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Natalie Young penned a novel after being inspired by her divorce. Now her book, Season to Taste, is set to be one of the most controversial reads of 2014.

Admittedly, Season to Taste takes a somewhat extreme approach to ending a marriage. The book’s protagonist Lizzie, a 50-something housewife from Surrey, kills her husband and stores his body in the freezer. She decides to dispose of the body by cooking and eating him, piece by piece.

The macabre plot has already drawn attention from booksellers and journalists: newspapers are predicting that it will become one of 2014’s most talked-about books.

However the author, while emphasising that she had “no unpleasant thoughts of killing my own husband,” has described how Season to Taste was inspired by the end of her own marriage after 10 years.

She told one interviewer: “With two children to raise on your own it is unbelievably difficult. You have to deal with the guilt and explain why you left daddy.

“This book was a way of unconsciously depicting an extreme aspect of that very traumatic experience. It was a way of exploring the extreme repercussion of separation and divorce.”

Young, a former magazine editor, insists that her former husband has read the book and enjoyed it: “My ex-husband and I have a very good relationship. He has a really good sense of humour and finds the book very funny. He has read it closely to find bits of himself in [the husband], but hasn’t. I think it’s hidden very well.”

Instead, she believes Season to Taste to be a “feminist book, although it is not as simple as that. And it’s certainly not a man-hating book. However, women in marriages and relationships are so often trying to please men.

 “We also allow ourselves to be exploited and devoured. Killing and then eating or devouring can be part revenge and even part love.”

Season to Taste will be published by Tinder Press in January 2014.

The blog team at Stowe is a group of writers who share their advice on the wellbeing and emotional aspects of divorce or separation from personal experience. Guest contributors also regularly contribute to share their knowledge.

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Comments(5)

  1. Malcolm Lochhead says:

    Whether it’s a man-hating book or not is down to the reader to say, not the writer.

    I haven’t read it but have read various reviews, plot summaries etc. I do wonder how well-received a book would be if it concerned a man killing, cooking and eating his wife.

    I suspect it would be roundly denounced as horribly misogynistic. But since it’s about a man being murdered, hacked to bits and eaten, no-one will really mind.

    And since the author tells us it’s “certainly not a man-hating book” we’ll all just accept that.

  2. Anonymous says:

    It does sound like an irresponsible, bloody-minded and hate-inspired piece of work.

    We should be trying to defuse the stereotype that the female is only capable of thinking homicidally after divorce, but the plot of this novel seems to just try and excuse those homicidal thoughts instead.

  3. bill tucker says:

    Yet another vile hate-book, penned by a feminist, supported by a feminist. What a surprise.

  4. Stitchedup says:

    “He has read it closely to find bits of himself in [the husband], but hasn’t. I think it’s hidden very well.”

    Trying to find bits of himself?? – has he tried the freezer??

  5. Luke says:

    Although I wondered who in their right mind would be wanting to buy such a book I gave the author the benefit of the doubt and assumed she was not a man-hating feminist – but then I read her comments elsewhere and now I’m unsure either way – this is a quote:
    ============================
    ”‘So many women are trapped in relationships. I do believe women give more to a relationship than men do. It is in our nature to be incredibly giving once you have children.
    ‘Women in relationships are so often trying to please men and we allow ourselves to be exploited and devoured. Killing and then eating or devouring can be revenge.’”
    ==========================

    Righty-ho, so clearly Jeffrey Dahmer is coming at it from the male end instead and was just misunderstood – previously I just thought he was a monster 🙂

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