Elena Petrakis adores living on the Greek island of Zakynthos. When World War Two looms her way of life is threatened. Left with no choice she joins the island’s resistance to fight for what she believes in; her family, her home, and her freedom.
Decades later, thousands of miles away in the Cornish town of Newquay, Kate Fisher prepares to celebrate her twenty-first birthday, but her joy is fleeting when she learns she is adopted. Abandoning life in England, Kate flees to Zakynthos, where she is forced to acknowledge a life she has struggled to come to terms with, one that will change her future.
From the beautiful crystal turquoise seas of the Ionian Islands to the rugged shores of the Cornish coast, ‘Among the Olive Groves’ is a story of love, bravery and sacrifice.
What Inspired You to Write Your Book?
Among the Olive Groves is based on a conversation I had with a Greek local while on holiday in Zakynthos, Greece in 2005. During the conversation the local told me about how islanders were treated during World War Two, and the terrible way that German’s disposed of ‘traitors’. The conversation stayed with me and I decided that I had to write about it. I also wanted to set a book on the island of Zakynthos as it’s a beautiful place and Greece has been through such a hard time in the last few years. I wanted to write something that would inspire people to visit it.
How Did You Come up With Your Characters?
I always have a rough idea of the plot, and the characters tend to evolve while I work out the plot, I tend to fine tune them as I go.
Angelos felt the age in his bones. His body was stiff and he found it difficult to walk far nowadays. Sitting in the square under the shade of a tree, he sipped a coffee. His doctor told him he should cut back on it, but Angelos ignored the man. He loved the taste too much and would not give it up for anyone. His life had been a long one, fraught and filled with heartache and disappointment. Every day he thought about the past; it was always with him and never left his side. When he woke in the mornings he would remember some snippet from that time, something that brought tears to his eyes. But his mind was beginning to fade; as he aged, things had become muddled. He could cope with his body failing, but not his mind. Some days were clear and if you asked him a question he could have answered it with complete certainty. Other days, he waded through fog, only to be left with random images that cluttered his brain and made no sense at all. There was always one constant and she remained forever. Her face, her touch and her smell were imprinted upon his brain as though she were the very essence of him. She was the one thing he could not forget about, nor would he want to.
A gust of breeze, that seemed to come from nowhere, passed across him, and it was then that he knew. Something was coming, something that would change his life, what little remained of it, forever. The island was about to give up her secrets.
Chrissie lives in London with her husband and is a freelance Production Coordinator working in the TV, documentary and film industry.
Chrissie is also an Author. Her thriller Integrate was released in October 2013 and her historical fiction Among the Olive Groves was released in July 2014.
Other written work includes factual articles for the Bristolian newspaper and guest articles for the charities Epilepsy Awareness Squad and Epilepsy Literary Heritage Foundation. Chrissie has also written a book of short stories and poems, one of which was performed at the 100 poems by 100 women event at the Bath International Literary Festival in 2013.
Chrissie is passionate about Ancient History, Archaeology and Travel, and has completed two six-month Archaeology and Egyptology courses with Exeter University. She also likes to read, collect books, make bracelets and listen to music.
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