Harriet and the Cherry Pie – Clare Compton

I remember reading this book at school and enjoying it but for some reason never owning my own copy so I only ever read the once. But, for some reason, the story has stayed with me and I’ve always wanted to re-read it.

The problem has been trying to find a copy at a price I was prepared to pay! Many of the comments on Amazon are that everyone is trying to find a copy to replace tatty, well-read books that are dropping to pieces. Finally, I managed to get a copy and settled down for an afternoon’s read. I was a little trepidatious; was it as good as I remembered? Would I enjoy it? Was it the right book?

I really enjoyed the book. I’d forgotten some parts and I found the ending very silly but I recognised the 1960s world Harriet lives in and liked the fact it deals with some real-world problems, such as money worries.

I’m definitely with the reviewers on Amazon who think it’s time for a reprint. And I think, with a tiny bit of updating, it would make a great TV adaptation in the way Ballet Shoes was back in the 70s.

Oh, and the story? Harriet and her small sister have to live with a great-aunt in London whilst their father goes to Australia on business for 6 months. The great-aunt turns out to be the quite young owner of a not very successful tea shop. By the end of the story lots of new friends have been made, Harriet is in a West End play and the Cherry Pie has become a popular tea shop.

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