The Frog Theory
Tragedy and comedy in perfect proportion.
Kim and Flow are the best of friends, living on a council estate, making money selling drugs.
Just around the corner in a smarter part of Fulham is Clea, a well-heeled young woman coping with a violent home life at the hands of her twisted step-father.
The Principal runs a famous college for problem teens. Fostering guilty secrets which distance her from her own children, she resists the advances of a man she sees on the train every day.
When Kim and Clea meet by chance, Kim is smitten but worried about her. Using the anecdote of the frog theory - that it will jump straight out of boiling water and live, but stay in and die if heated slowly from cold - he wakes her up to the dangerous situation she’s in at home.
Serendipity and a cake-fuelled food fight that goes viral will bring Kim, Clea, Flow and The Principal together in weird and wonderful ways in this frenetic, laugh-out-loud story about love, conscience and lion-hearted nerve.
After attending school for model-making, Mordaunt started Image Casting in 1998, specialising in customised body castings. Over the course of 13 years, she worked on such films as Atonement and The Wildest Dream, as well as for personal clients like Lionel Richie. In 2012, she relocated to Botswana with her husband and daughter where she currently resides.
Celtic Lady’s Reviews – author spotlight
...from Fiona Mordaunt
Although I passed various exams I did not get into my first choice of art college. I took a year out to visit my estranged father, whom I had never met and who lived in Australia. He was on his fourth wife at the time! The meeting was a complete disaster, I guess echoed in The Frog Theory, though I wasn’t conscious of that when I wrote it. I enjoyed my time there so much, however, that I decided to stay a while and to forget the idea of college altogether.
Back in London I got a good job but I couldn’t spell – the extremely high-profile PR company soon fired me! It was very gentle – they even gave me a present – but still, it was a real blow to my ego, and I then discovered I was dyslexic. Somebody probably should have noticed that when I was sent to the library to get the Seven Pillars of Wisdom and came back with the Five Pillars of Islam, but it was not always that obvious.
Nothing seemed to be fitting together. It felt like my life had bumped off track and I didn’t know how to fix it. I got a job with Clinique cosmetics thinking I would hate it but I was desperate for money. Surprise – I loved it! My talent for applying makeup materialised. When a woman phoned to book a wedding makeup with me one Saturday morning, I assumed it would be for a trial run, so it was a shock when she turned up in her wedding dress, surrounded by bridesmaids, and perched herself on a stool in Barkers of Kensington.
For someone to trust me like that gave me great confidence. I found love at Barkers, too, in the china and glass department. We moved in together and life rocked. But into every life a little rain must fall; three years later he finished with me, then I was attacked after work. I was knocked unconscious and the first thing I remember was a policeman shaking me and asking where I lived.
I had to spend a couple of weeks at my mum’s house, in bed, and it was one of the lowest points of my life. I remember thinking: ‘Either I’m going to get worse now and have a breakdown or I’m going to take this situation and use it to change my life.’ I reckoned the latter plan was worth a try.
We had no Internet back then so I went to the library and foraged around in the careers section – Sixty Ways to Avoid Becoming an Accountant, Unusual Careers for Unusual People – off I went, clasping the book to my chest.
Chicken sexer? What – on earth – was a chicken sexier? No!
Jeeeeeez, this was not going to be my salvation after all but – hang on – model maker! Just maybe?
I announced to my mum and my stepfather that I was going to go part time for Clinique and live in a house share with four other people in Clapham; that I was going to become – a model maker!
They despaired at the unknown depths of my madness but I hung tough and they supported me financially when I attended Bournemouth and Poole College of Art and Design to complete a model-making HND. Everything clicked into place. I made friends I still have now and after finishing college I freelanced on films, adverts, and on stage shows. We used to do body casts to make costumes fit properly and in 1998 I thought it would be a great idea to start a face and body casting company for the public, so I did – Image Casting, still going strong.
A happy relationship. A terrible relationship! A couple of affairs later and I met Jamie, who would become my husband. Writing had always been a passion of mine, despite my tempestuous relationship with spelling, and he encouraged me. I was surprised to discover that amongst many famous writers who thrived with a learning disability are Agatha Christie, F. Scott FitzGerald and George Bernard Shaw. Suddenly, it did not seem so implausible.
Our daughter, Ella, arrived in 2010 and I sold Image Casting. It was a tough decision but the right one. When my husband’s work took us to Gaborone in 2013 and Ella started loving nursery, which was essentially a giant sandpit, I finished the story I had started when I was just 15 – The Frog Theory.