Available from Between the Lines is Suzanne’s Evans’ novelistic biography of Canadian Ethel Mulvany, who rallied fellow prisoners of war in Singapore’s infamous Changi Jail to fight starvation by conducting “imaginary feasts”. After the war, Ethel published a singular cookbook of the dreamed-of recipes to raise money to help surviving prisoners of war.

“This is a story about an unusual woman in an unbearable situation. Evans has delved deep and written with great sympathy about the long drama of picking up the pieces of a broken life.”

~Elizabeth Hay, author of Giller Prize-winner Late Nights on Air

The Taste of Longing is also available on audiobook, narrated by Gwenlyn Cumyn.

Award-winning radio documentary producer Alisa Siegel’s CBC Radio documentary on Ethel, produced for The Sunday Edition, features the voice and work of Suzanne Evans.

The Taste of Longing has been optioned by acclaimed documentary filmmaker Noura Kevorkian.

The Taste of Longing by Suzanne Evans

Evans came first across Mulvany’s starving prisoners of war cookbook while working as a research fellow at the Canadian War Museum. “… [T]his cook book stumped me. How could the prisoners write recipes while starving? Why did they? Who were these women? By the time I reached the last page, I needed answers to these questions and many more about war, creativity and survival. The hunt for details and understanding began in my own neighbourhood and eventually sent me around the world.”

Distinguished historian Jonathan Vance calls The Taste of Longing “completely absorbing, a fascinating glimpse at the struggle to survive in wartime Singapore. Ethel Mulvany was sustained by friendship, dreams of freedom, and, above all, food— real and imagined. After reading it, you’ll never look at a meal in quite the same way.”