Fig Tree has pre-empted a memoir on grief, love and cake by cookery columnist Olivia Potts.
Penguin bought world rights to the non-fiction book through Zoe Ross at United Agents.
Billed as "a food memoir like no other", Olivia Potts’s A Half Baked Idea will explore Potts' experience of bereavement and of falling in love, as well her transition to the "fascinating, bizarre" world of pâtisserie fine. It tells the story of a period in her life when she suddenly lost her mother, met the man who was to become her husband and jacked in a career as a criminal barrister to study for the Cordon Bleu Diplôme de Pâtisserie.
Fig Tree's Juliet Annan said: “Besides all of the above, there are delicious recipes at the end of each chapter. What’s not to love? It reminds me of all my favourite food memoir writers. I adore this outline, it’s that rare combination of heart wrenching and guffaw-out-loud funny – I don’t think I have ever laughed before at an account of cutting up fruit.”
Potts is now the cookery columnist for Spectator Life, writing their Vintage Chef column, and has written for delicious, Sainsbury’s Magazine, the Guardian, At The Table, the New Statesman, Oh Comely, the Evening Standard, White Noise, Root + Bone and Domestic Sluttery. She is also a judge for the Guild of Food Writers’ Food Book Award.
She said: “I never imagined when I lost my mother five years ago that it would lead to leaving my law career, pinning my hopes on soufflés, and falling in love. I am thrilled to be with Fig Tree: I’m delighted that Juliet believes in my strange story of grief, love and cake.”