A tribute to Denise Epstein
29th April 2013
I wrote this article in 2007 for the Sunday Times. Denise died earlier this month and I am posting it with much sadness but happy memories of meeting her. When Irene Némirovsky was sent to Auschwitz she left behind a hidden literary sensation – and a l …
A tale of Mrs T
10th April 2013
I once met Mrs Thatcher at the British embassy in Paris. The year was 1989 and I was staying with my friend Iona, the daughter of the then ambassador. He is a lovely man called Sir Ewen Fergusson, who was and remains my idea of a perfect ambassador, ta …
Good Housekeeping Column September 2012
29th October 2012
Before moving to the UAE we lived in France. I didn’t make many friends, French women are notoriously difficult to make friends with, but those friends I did have spent most of the summer talking about just one thing: la rentrée. La rentrée is the Fren …
Interview with Nawal El Saadawi
10th October 2012
Nawal El Saadawi has returned to Cairo where intends to stay until she dies. Not that she feels particularly at home there. “Home is not about where I am. I would not call Cairo home. I feel at home wherever I meet people I feel at home with,” she tell …
Good Housekeeping column – December 2011
27th May 2012
I have been writing a column for Good Housekeeping magazine here since December last year. Here is the first one. This will be our fourth Christmas in Abu Dhabi, and I’m determined to get it right. Last year we were almost there, but I fear the pink tr …
I don’t know you, but I hate you
21st May 2012
OK I promise I won’t go on about the AMAZING Champions League victory on Saturday, I realise most of my readers are not obsessive Chelsea fans. But today is George Best’s birthday, so it would be rude not to mention football at all. Even those of you w …
All in a day’s work
16th May 2012
I have always wondered what it would be like not to work. I have literally not stopped since university. I never had maternity leave (I was making calls from my hospital bed) and although I worked from home for a long time in France, I had at least thr …
Women of a certain age
18th April 2012
There is a famous saying that women of a certain age discover either God or gardening. I would like to add a third discovery, every bit as all-encompassing and obsessive: Tennis. I have loved tennis since I was a child. I was never much good at it, the …
15th June 2011
This morning as I was battling on the exercise bike, I watched a brilliant programme on the French channel Arte about the feminst group ‘Ni Putes, Ni Soumises’ (not whores, nor submissives). Obviously as it was all in French I hardly understood any of …
The difference between girls and boys
21st June 2010
During the car journey back home from Oman we asked the children what they had done that morning. “We woke up,” said Bea, referring to herself and her friend Polly, “we went for a bike ride up to breakfast and then we had breakfast. We had cut up banan …
Helena Frith Powell was born in Sweden to a Swedish mother and Italian father, but grew up mainly in England. She is the author of eleven books, translated into several languages including Chinese and Russian. She wrote the French Mistress column The Sunday Times about life in France for several years. She is a regular contributor to the Daily Mail, Mail on Sunday, The Times, Daily Telegraph, Tatler Magazine and Harper’s Bazaar.
Helena has been the editor of four magazines, including M Magazine, a supplement for the Abu Dhabi based National Newspaper and FIVE, a high-end fashion glossy, also published in Abu Dhabi. Helena was also editor in chief of 360 Life, a quarterly glossy magazine published with the Sports 360 Newspaper in Dubai, part of the Chalhoub Group.
Helena contributes regularly to UK-based newspapers and magazines and holds a Masters in Creative Writing from the University of Cambridge. Helena is working on a thriller called Thin Ice that will be published in 2021 as well as a novel about the relationship between Virginia Woolf and Katherine Mansfield called Sense of an Echo.
Her latest non-fiction work Smart Women Don’t Get Wrinkles came out in hardback in 2016 and in paperback in April 2018.
Helena, who was educated at Durham University, lives in the Languedoc region of France with her husband Rupert and their three children.