Cover the Butter by Carrie Kabak
The year is 1965, and Kate Cadogan has just got her first bra and corset. It’s a watershed moment, even if she hates the way the girdle chafes the tops of her thighs, and even though what she really wanted was a polka-dot shift dress with a cool Peter Pan collar. Undaunted, Kate jumps headfirst into the thrills and heartaches of her teenage years, albeit under the watchful eye of her mother, Biddy, a woman so repressed and controlling she gives new meaning to the word ‘matriarch’. From her first crush, local bad boy Barry Finch, through to her scandalous period of ‘living in sin’ during her years at teacher training college, right up to her passionless marriage to Rodney, Kate seems to have a talent for picking the wrong men. Ultimately seeking Biddy’s approval in everything she does, Kate finds the parameters of her life shrinking before her eyes, and feels powerless to stop it. Fortunately, her lifelong friends, Moira and Ingrid, are on hand, giving her more support than a foundation garment ever could, helping her to realize that she can create a life for herself, and that starting over has no age limit.