Trainee midwife Bethan Powell lives in the shadow of the workhouse during the Depression. It's difficult to say which is harder for her and fellow nurse Laura Ronconi - their gruelling work in the hospital, or the frictions and financial hardships at home. Bethan's Communist miner father, rigidly Chapel mother, unruly brothers and delightful but dubiously honest aunt, and Laura's vast Italian cafe-running family, cause the girls as much worry as any difficult case or strict ward sister. But working-class Pontypridd agrees on one thing - the 'crache', or gentry, who live in the big houses on the Common, may be just the other side of town, but they inhabit a different world. So when Bethan and Laura are smitten by two young doctors, can love really bridge the divide? Or is the pull of family too strong, the gulf too wide?
CATRIN COLLIER/KATHERINE JOHN/CARO FRENCH/KATHERINE HARDY -
My most bemused moment. When someone commented, "It will be wonderful for Pontypridd when you die." (Many of my novels are set in the town)
My best "putting in place moment". When someone joined a queue at a signing session in Waterstones and waited ten minutes to say, "I don't want a book, love, but as you're here for two hours, look after my shopping for me." - I did.
My proudest moment, when I discovered my Catrin Collier novel, One Last Summer, based on my Prussian born mother's wartime diaries was named recommended reading for adults by the Holocaust Day Memorial Trust.
My new novel, Bobby's Girl, set in America during in 1968 - the era of the anti-Vietnam War and, Civil Rights movements and student protests will be published by Allison & Busby on June 13TH 2011.