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Queen Mum

by Kate Long

eBooks of the Month Family Drama Relationship Stories

LoveReading View on Queen Mum

This is a book about families and friendships and how, so often, everything is not what it seems.  It is told by Ally whose best friend and next door neighbour, Juno, signs up for a reality-TV show, ‘Queen Mum’.  Juno does a 2 week wife swap with another family and we see behind the scenes before, during and after the filming.  On the surface, Juno is the perfect wife and mother, who seems to have an adoring half French husband, a beautiful house, home prepared food and children who do their music practice.  Ally is quite envious of her and Juno is confident of winning the ‘Queen Mum’ title at the end of her 2 week stint but things do not turn out quite as she planned.  We also see in Ally’s telling of the story how a past tragedy has affected her relationships with her family and her best friend.   This is a well observed novel about love and friendship and how ‘reality’ is sometimes not as real as we think.

Queen Mum Synopsis

Ally lives with her husband, Tom, and her son, Ben, in Cestrian Park, Chester; it’s a world of verdigris planters, antique French wall clocks, Belfast sinks and Farrow & Ball colour charts. Ally loves it, but at the same time isn't sure she quite belongs there - it's such a long way from where she started out.

Next door live Juno and the half-French Manny, with their two gorgeous teenage daughters, Pascale and Sophie. Juno is beautiful, confident, curious; her household runs with a contented hum, its mechanism lubricated with organic olive oil.

But Juno has suddenly made a surprising decision: she has signed up for a reality TV show, Queen Mum. For two weeks, she will be going to live with another family in another town, while her opposite number will be moving in next door to Ally. Juno is excited; she thinks it will be a ‘fascinating cultural exchange’. Ally isn’t so sure; how will she manage without her best friend? But that isn’t the only reason why she is worried. She doesn’t like change. She has seen too much of it to find it interesting, and she knows from bitter experience how something precious can be lost in a moment.

Queen Mum is a perceptive and timely novel about friendship and love, recklessness and caution, and about how the camera, while it sometimes lies, can also reveal uncomfortable truths.

Queen Mum Press Reviews

‘Publishing’s Victoria Wood’ Time Out

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All versions of this book

ISBN: 9780330435482
Publication date: 02/03/2007
Publisher: Pan Macmillan
Format: Paperback (b Format)

ISBN: 9780330435390
Publication date: 02/06/2006
Publisher: Pan Macmillan
Format: Hardback

Book Information

ISBN: 9780330435390
Publication date: 2nd June 2006
Author: Kate Long
Publisher: Pan Macmillan
Format: Hardback
Genres: eBook Favourites, Family Drama, Relationship Stories,

About Kate Long

A former teacher,  Kate Long born in 1964 grew up in Blackrod, Lancashire. She wrote her first novel, The Bad Mother's Handbook, after her children had gone to bed and "if there was nothing good on the telly." She currently lives with her husband and two young children in the small village in Shropshire.

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