Fixing Mrs Philpott


A novel in two parts: two books for the price of one. Dedicated to the valiant people of Christchurch, it plunges into the disturbing environment of Canterbury, New Zealand, as the first cluster of 17,000 earthquakes struck the area.

Book one: Yellow Caravan

Mrs Philpott has a handful of problems that she prefers not to think about. Why should she, when at 70 she is convinced that her life is virtually over? For reasons that made perfect sense at the time, she has constructed an identity by imitating what other people do. But this strategy has its limits. For example, she cannot cope with her beloved husband’s persistent need for physical contact. Also, her Dusty Springfield hairdo is starting to disintegrate.

And then the earthquakes start.

She takes a road trip, fleeing a shattered city and (she hopes) all her problems. Within hours, she is drowning in personal stories and random advice. There’s no escape from the need to rebuild her own happiness, her marriage, and her very identity—with the help of 25 friends, old and new.

Book two: Scarlet Heels

Mrs Philpott has been virtually ordered by Katherine,strategy advisor to the Christchurch City Libraries and formidable Chair of the Body Corporate, to gather stories about personal relationships on her road trip. Scarlet Heels contains 32 stories told by 27 characters describing their private struggles, including their alarmingly different ways of dealing with problems of marriage and sex. Mrs Philpott introduces the stories and contributes her own.

How to purchase Fixing Mrs Philpott

Hard copy: right now (October 2016) only through Scorpio Books online or Unity Books online.

  • NZ$35 plus postage
  • contact an independent New Zealand bookstore directly through their websites.

Kindle: coming soon.