Eve Makis Books

"The Spice Box Letters"

 

The Book - The Spice Box Letters

The spice box is full of secrets.

Katerina inherits a scented, wooden spice box after her grandmother Mariam dies. It contains letters and a diary, written in Armenian. As she pieces together her family story, Katerina learns that Mariam’s childhood was shattered by the Armenian tragedy of 1915.

Mariam was exiled from her home in Turkey and separated from her beloved brother, Gabriel, her life marred by grief and the loss of her first love. Dissatisfied and restless, Katerina tries to find resolution in her own life as she completes Mariam’s story – on a journey that takes her across Cyprus and then half a world away to New York.

Miracles, it seems, can happen – for those trapped by the past, and for Katerina herself.

 

Published by Sandstone Press in March 2015

www.sandstonepress.com

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"Land of the Golden Apple"

The Book - The Mother in Law by Eve Makis

‘Life had lost its sweetness. Socrates felt as if he had eaten the accursed apple and was like Adam, suddenly prone to emotions he had never before experienced - fear, loneliness and shame.’

For Socrates growing up in a small Cypriot village is both idyllic and frustrating. Summer is on the horizon and yet his parents, his teachers and his interfering neighbours seem intent on spoiling his fun. He spends his time setting off homemade fireworks and causing explosions, tormenting local pensioners, spying on his brother’s girlfriends and escaping the clutches of the village policeman on his illegal moped. But his carefree days are numbered as the jasmine-scented breeze mingles with the threat of danger. Behind the façade of respectable island life lurk dark and menacing forces. An abused wife plots revenge on her violent husband and a dangerous predator stalks the innocent.

Eve Makis’ world is a fabulous montage of texture, colour and atmosphere; where light heartedness and comedy go hand-in-hand with sadness and tragedy. Land of the Golden Apple is a bewitching coming-of-age novel about the lives and loves, joys and despairs of a diverse yet tightly-knit community and about how those same ties that bind us can also constrict us.

Publication date: April 2008

Buy Land of the Golden Apple on rbooks.co.uk

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"The Mother in Law"

The Book - The Mother in Law by Eve Makis

Electra is warm, vivacious, Mediterranean-born and married to Adam, a calm, reasonable Englishman. They say opposites attract but are there some differences that run deeper than cucumber sandwiches vs dolmades, Cyprus vs Acton?

When she discovers she is pregnant Electra is overjoyed but finds herself in a dilemma over how to break the news to her husband. Adam has made it clear that he doesn't want a baby. What he hasn't made so clear in his typically reserved English way, is why he feels as he does. Having lost his own father to Alzheimers, Electra can understand Adam's anxieties over the idea of parenthood but is he giving her the whole picture? When Adam's mother falls ill and moves in with them their relationship reaches breaking point.

The couple are not the only ones wrestling with cultural clashes. Electra's friend Lydia, raising her son alone, finds her efforts to discipline him thwarted by his indulgent Spanish grandmother.

Buy The Mother in Law on rbooks.co.uk

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"Eat, Drink and be Married"

The Book - Eat, Drink and be Married by Eve Makis

Sweet memories, bitter reality? Constantina Papamichael has only three demands of her teenage daughter: to eat, drink and be married.

Although Anna has no problem enjoying the Greek-Cypriot delicacies her mother prepares for her, she is opposed to settling down with a nice boy in a four-bedroom house with a BMW on the driveway. Her plans go beyond working in her family's fish-and-chip shop on a rundown Nottingham council estate, and towards the realms of university life.

Although she isn't allowed the same freedoms as her older brother Andy or her beautiful cousin Athena, Anna has a close ally in her grandmother. As well as encouraging her to follow her heart, Yiayia teaches Anna about her family's heritage, shows her how to tell the future from coffee cups and practise magic in the kitchen.

This bittersweet debut novel tells of Anna's struggle to please her parents yet break free from tradition while growing up as a first generation British Cypriot.

Author Eve Makis writes with authority as, like her heroine, she too grew up in an English takeaway run by her Cypriot parents. The novel benefits from her first-hand knowledge of their native country and its traditions. Her evocative descriptions of the landscape and its jasmine-infused air, which make you understand why her family hold their memories so dear, contrast sharply with the images of the ugly, concrete council estate where they now work.

But the clever balance between heart-warming comic moments and events with dark undertones is what I found most intriguing. The comic rough and tumble of family life is countered by the racism and violence they face. Makis writes with great sensitivity on the issues of arranged marriages, family secrets and even rape. Her observations are consistently sharp and keep you engaged to the uplifting conclusion.

An easy-to-digest and highly enjoyable read.

Daily Express - Terrie Thackery

Read an extract from The Mother in Law by Eve Makis

Buy Eat, Drink and be Married on rbooks.co.uk

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Latest news

Jerwood Fiction Uncovered Prize 2015 - long list

"The Spice Box Letters" has been long listed for the Jerwood Fiction Uncovered Prize 2015. Visit the Jerwood Fiction uncovered website to find out more. www.fictionuncovered.co.uk ...

Added: 14:48 pm, 12th May 2015

» Read more.

Armenian diaspora in Cyprus

Four years ago I decided to explore the Armenian diaspora in Cyprus and made my protagonists Armenian. In order to understand my characters I had to research their history and how they had come to set ...

Added: 16:09 pm, 6th May 2015

» Read more.

Interview with Robin Lewis from the Left Lion

http://www.leftlion.co.uk/articles.cfm/title/eve-makis/id/7366 ...

Added: 10:07 am, 6th May 2015

» Read more.

Book giveaway

...

Added: 17:43 pm, 13th May 2015

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Comments header

A random selection of comments by visitors:

" I very much enjoyed your 2 books, actaully devoured The Motherinlaw in 24 hrs.

Having lived in Cyprus for 4 years it has given me a much better understanding of just why some of the lifestyles that are led by Cypriots actually are the way they are.

What a laugh I had especially at the pessaries for thrush one ............. hilarious !!! Keep writing I am looking forward to your next book ad will order on line. "

Posted by: Kate
12:35 pm, 16th March 2008

" A genuine insight into the typical life of a 1st generation British born Cypriot girl. It can even double up as a Greek recipe book with each chapter beginning with the ingredients and instructions for a popular Greek dish! The book is charming and witty and in places totally hilarious. "

Posted by: Anonymous
12:36 pm, 8th March 2008

" I was delighted to receive my signed copy of the above novel last Saturday. I

read it in two train journeys to work and back and I enjoyed it immensely. I

especially liked the way the story was told from each character's perspective.

I am so glad I have discovered your books and I shall be buying them for my

greek-cypriot and non-greek-cypriot friends for Christmas. Thanks and I hope you keep publishing your work for the enjoyment of myself and your growing number of fans. "

Posted by: Maria Sack
19:09 pm, 30th October 2006

" I started this a couple of days ago then read about the last third of the book sitting up in bed after a coughing fit at 3.30 am! This was excellent. Feeling more serious than Eat, Drink, and sometimes a slightly uncomfortable read but only due to the fact that the

observation was so wonderful and the mother-in-law situation so resonant, even without such a large cultural difference! I loved all the main characters, especially Aunt Miroulla, larger than life in all ways but providing Electra with the Greek culture she so desperately needed in cold England, and Alvaro, the 6 year old who thinks he's Elvis. Oh, and Sean, sketched in of necessity but SO lovely. An intricate plot and great observation (esp of the interactions between adults and kids) made this a gallop of a read but with enough substance to keep one satisfied

too. As in Eat, Drink, too, we learn something about what it is like to

live in a different country from one's homeland, and what the partition

of Cyprus really was, and is, like.

"

Posted by: Liz Broomfield
5:41 am, 30th October 2006

" This is a far reaching, perceptive and moving novel. At times laugh out loud funny, it also provides a deceptively deep examination of the relationships which can shape or break our lives.Lively and engaging, this book is hard to put down, and the characters remain with you long after you turn the final page. "

Posted by: Andrea Harrison
22:27 pm, 30th October 2006

" A charming and very funny insight into life behind the fish and chip counter, painting a poignant picture of a young woman's struggle for identity amidst cultural clashes, parental pressure and adolescent longing and confusion. The Mother - Daughter relationship at the novel's heart is acutely observed and at times hilarious. Beware, however, 'Eat Drink and Be Married' will not allow you to finish reading with dry eyes. A very satisfying read which also provides a compelling snapshot into the recent history of Cyprus. "

Posted by: Louise Frost
22:28 pm, 30th October 2006

" loved your book, and cant wait for the film!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Liz Parkin

Maroni book club

Cyprus. "

Posted by: Liz Parkin
10:01 am, 30th January 2007

" The members of our book club reviewed this book at our last meeting and the general consensus was that it was an utter delight. Since many of us have lived here in Cyprus for some years we felt as tho' we knew YiaYia and Tina as neighbours and friends, we could 'hear' their voices, taste their food, be a part of the family intrigues, squabbles and machinations. Eve Makis writes with such poignancy and affection she drew us in completely and we all 'cared' about the characters she draws with such perception. Looking forward to reading her next book. "

Posted by: Elsa Basden Maroni Cyprus
10:02 am, 30th January 2007

" I'm from Catalonia. I'm 34. Male. Reading The Mother In Law. This book is fantastic. But even better to have found expressions like 'pa amb tomaquet' or 'truita de patata'. I'm very glad.

Visca Catalunya lliure!

Visca la Eve Makis!

Molts petons (a lot of kisses), i adeeeeeu!

Marc Renobell "

Posted by: Hi from Catalonia
10:17 am, 21st February 2007

" This book is a must for any Brit living in Cyprus,the family is wonderfully whacky, Tina's English is a delight and instantly recognisable.The snippets of island history make one want to discover more and the recipes are great, my neighbour has tried them all! The book made me laugh and cry so its a winner for me. "

Posted by: Liz Scott
12:47 pm, 14th February 2007

" You will have heard from Elsa Basden of Maroni who runs our Book Club how very much we all enjoyed 'East Drink and be Married'.

Having had a home in Cyprus for over 20 years - the first 9 years of which were spent in the Troodos Mountains - I found I could identify immediately with all the characters - your descriptions and character drawing were so accurate. Thankyou for such an enjoyable book.

However, I then went on to read 'The Mother-in-Law' and enjoyed that even more - thankyou. I do hope you will be able to visit our Book Group one day when you are next in Cyprus. "

Posted by: Rosemary Corner, Maroni, Cyprus
14:11 pm, 17th February 2007

" Somebody gave me this book by accident on Friday night, Its now 1am Sunday morning and I can't put it down.

Its so very real!!!! "

Posted by: Chris Michae
13:28 pm, 25th March 2007

" I judged this book by the cover and was not disappointed! My favourite character is Tina, I love that she speaks her mind. This book is so silly and makes me laugh all the time. I can't wait to get my hands on 'the mother in law.' You're a great writer!!! !:-) "

Posted by: Kaki
17:40 pm, 8th June 2007

" I was delighted to discover that you have another book in the pipeline and have just placed an order at Amazon for Land of the Golden Apple - roll on April 2008 "

Posted by: Julie
9:09 am, 19th March 2008

" I just wanted to say I am a big fan of your work. I find it truely refreshing to read you novels and gain a wider knowledg of Cypriot history as well as culture "

Posted by: a reader
9:08 am, 19th March 2008

" Having lived in Cyprus for 25 years it's been a wonderful journey of discovery reading Eve's books. I've howled with laughter and sobbed tears of despair as the characters drew me in to their loves and lives. I just love her prose and deft sketches of utterly believable characters, whose voices i know, oh so well, as they surround me day and night here in my village. Eve keep them coming...our book club here in Maroni Cyprus, have agreed, unusually to a woman, that we have loved all three books...in fact they just get better and better. "

Posted by: ELSA BASDEN
19:16 pm, 25th July 2008

" Hi, Eve I was at the talk you gave at Edwinstowe library in September, it was lovely to met you. I had just started reading Eat Drink & be Married, I enjoyed this book very much, on taking it back to the library I then took out Land of the Golden Apple, brilliant, my husbad read it too before I returned it, he thought the same as me. We are now looking forward to The Mother In Law. Keep the books coming, well done "

Posted by: Heather
18:16 pm, 9th October 2008

" I enjoyed the couple of hours at Edwinstowe library a few weeks ago. Having read your first book(gave me the giggles) and recognised the symptoms of mothers in general I looked forward to my next read of yours which is the Land of the Golden Apple, I know you said Socrates was based on your hubby did he really blow up the bicycle lamp?? hehe..just great.. "

Posted by: Valerie
21:39 pm, 20th October 2008

" Hi I just had to write and tell you how much i loved your latest book,got my signed copy (with many thanks) last week and just could'nt put it down, the housework was put aside and I lost myself in the life of all the unforgetable characters and their lives.Absolute bliss! I have read both your previous books and each one has been better than the last, they just keep getting better and better! Please keep them coming! Never stop writing... Can't wait for the next one! "

Posted by: Necty Georgiou
11:27 am, 29th April 2009

" I have some wonderful Greek friends and just loved this book as so true to the way I see the general, happy and hunerous attitude of these friends.

Thank you Eve. I will now go on to read your other two books and look forward to many happy and amusing hours. "

Posted by: Pam Price
11:10 am, 3rd August 2009

" I grew up in Cyprus, starting when it was a British colony and staying on until 1971. My mother still lives there, now married to a Greek Cypriot. I absolutely loved this book and am just sending it to a Cypriot school friend (from the English School, Nicosia) who now lives in Reading. It brings back fond memories of Cyprus and an affection for Anglo-Cypriots here. The sections on political history, interspersed amongst the social comedy, are a clear account of what happened in Cyprus so there is much food for thought.Thank you for the pleasure that this book has given me. I hope to read the other two soon. All good wishes and keep writing! "

Posted by: Shelley Leggett
9:53 am, 21st September 2009

" Hi Eve, I've read all your books and throughly enjoyed and related to them being a Greek Cypriot myself. Do you have any books in the pipeline and if you have when will the next one be available? Great reading, thanks very much "

Posted by: reader
22:38 pm, 21st October 2009

" Dear Eve, I read your first two books and I enjoyed them very much. Your lively and humorous writing style adds to the whole story an air of sympathy that adds positively towards the authenticity of the characters' portrayals. I often found myself laughing aloud while reading YIAYIA'S words in your book Eat, Drink and Be Married "

Posted by: ...
10:19 am, 1st November 2009

" i enjoyed reading this book . i could not put it down.the charecters were true and very human . thank you for a great book. "

Posted by: c.savvides
11:06 am, 9th March 2010

" Reading this on the train to and from work is not a good idea as I am laughing openly and get funny looks from fellow commuters. I can so relate to the rather "large looped sanitary towel", I nearly wet myselt laughing. Read the Mother in Law. absolutly brilliant. I have bought all 3 books for a gift for my friend. From a Greek Cypriot born in North London, many many similarities in our upbringing. You have put our experiences and culture to words. "

Posted by: Joanna
17:38 pm, 29th April 2010

" I have just finished this book. what joy, so many emotions felt throughout. Loved all the characters and the way it was brought together, genius. So true to life. I have read all 3 books, I cannot wait for more. Go Greek Cypriot girl, you are fantastic. "

Posted by: Joanna T
10:18 am, 19th May 2010

" I just read 'Eat drink and be married' for the second time - now as a mother. It is a wonderful book - the characters are so real and loveable - I must find your other books! "

Posted by: Bethany
7:13 am, 31st May 2010

" Dear Eve, I have just finished reading your book Land of the Golden Apple. It was so beautifully written, the characters were so interesting and being an English Cypriot myself I felt as if i could relate to them straight away. A wonderful story, I hope you write another book like that based in Cyprus. Thank you "

Posted by: Sophia Christou
10:15 am, 14th June 2010

" I have just finished your book..Land of the Golden Apple as it was chosen for our monthly Book Club read. I was enthralled and hope my friends will agree when we meet this afternoon t discuss it. I was particularly interested because part of my family went to work in Cyprus in 2001 and at the end of your book I felt I had visited Cyprus again but there was no airfare to pay !!!! I cross referenced some of your Cypriot foods with a lovely cook book....Falling Cloudberries...which has a section on Cypriot recipes.You would love it. "

Posted by: Dorothy HENDERSON
12:42 pm, 12th October 2011

" Just recently discovered you and i'm already a big fan! Your stories are real, truthful and talk straight into my heart... Well done. Please carry on giving us the pleasure of reading your books! "

Posted by: Loukia
10:42 am, 30th October 2011

" It was a great pleasure to meet Eve at Southwell Library this evening. "The Spice Box Letters" is a gripping and timely novel about a dreadful event which occurred in the death throes of the Ottoman Empire . It also provides memorable characters of great resilience and humanity. It was fascinating to hear the author talk about the process of bringing a novel to life. Thank you Eve, other venues might produce larger audiences but none which could exceed our appreciation. "

Posted by: Gillian Starkey
9:56 am, 27th May 2015

" I picked up the large print version of this book for one of my Library home delivery clients, but it looked interesting, so decided to read it myself first. I couldn`t put it down ! I hadn`t read any of her books before so have just found the website to find other titles. I`m about to email my daughter to recommend her to read it too. "

Posted by: valerie day
10:04 am, 23rd July 2016

 
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