My fellow author friend from CHINDI wrote a thought-provoking first novel (“Crazy over You”) and now she is celebrating the release of her second, her Ruby Fiction debut, The Purrfect Pet Sitter. So, I’ve invited her on my blog to tell me more about her novel, and where the action of her story takes place. I love travelling, as you know, and I think we are going to pop down to France at some stage.
The Purrfect Pet Sitter is a romantic comedy that will appeal to readers who believe in the intensity of first love and who know that sometimes, all you need is a second chance.
It tells the story of twenty-nine-year-old Lisa Blake who suffers a loss that causes her to re-evaluate her life, return to her hometown and start over as the purrfect pet sitter. But with her ex-best friend, her first love and a mystery man to contend with, Lisa has to discover how to move forward when the things she wants most are affected by the decisions of her past.
The novel is largely set in and around Littlehampton, in West Sussex on the south coast of England. This part of the country has a good mix of town, countryside and seaside, enabling me to incorporate those landscapes into the book – ideal for a pet sitter who is frequently out and about.
While writing, drawing inspiration from the local area, I also wanted to ensure that the places visited would be recognisable to readers no matter where they lived – the local bar, the doctor’s surgery, the parent and toddler group – the mainstays of towns and villages everywhere.
And, just as every town has that one person who seems to know everything that goes on, Lisa’s town has Harold Martin. He is a man in the know, and whose meddling has far-reaching consequences for Lisa.
However, not all of the action is local. One of my favourite parts to write (and research) sees Lisa visiting her parents in France. For this setting, I chose the village of Samoëns. We often holiday there as a family but to research this part of the story my husband and I made a special trip during a snowy January. It was a lot of fun. I spent mornings snowshoeing and attempting to cross-country ski, and my afternoons writing.
Samoëns is in the Rhone Alps region, with beautiful chalets set amongst the mountains. It is the place Lisa goes in the hope of reconnecting with her family but with secrets to be revealed, surprises in store, her mum acting out of character and a lot of catching up to do, Lisa’s life takes an unexpected, but not unwelcome turn.
You say you regularly holiday in Samoëns, in the Rhone Alps region of France, is this somewhere you would recommend others to visit?
Yes, the scenery is breathtaking, with beautiful mountains and stunning lakes. The people are friendly, and the atmosphere is very relaxing. And should you ever find yourself in Samoëns, then a trip down the road to Sixt Fer A Cheval is also a must. The mountains are formed in a horseshoe shape, meaning you are surrounded by spectacular views on all sides. It is beautiful in summer and winter, as is the waterfall Cascade du Rouget, also close to Samoëns. In the summer my husband, children and I stood in front of it unable to hear ourselves over the rushing water and getting soaked by the spray. In winter my husband and I hiked up to it and stood at the foot of the waterfall that appeared completely frozen in time. The only sound the occasional crack and pop coming from the curtain of ice. Stunning!
Thank you Carol and congratulations on the publication of The Purrfect Sitter, I have it downloaded and look forward to reading it.
Introducing Lisa Blake, the purrfect pet sitter!
When Lisa Blake’s life in London falls apart, she returns to her hometown rebranding herself as ‘the purrfect pet sitter’ – which may or may not be false advertising!
But being back where she grew up, Lisa can’t escape her past. There’s her estranged best friend Flick who she bumps into in an embarrassing encounter in a local supermarket. And her first love, Nathan Baker, who, considering their history, is sure to be even more surprised by her drunken Facebook friend request than Lisa is.
As she becomes involved in the lives of her old friends Lisa must confront the hurt she has caused, discover the truth about her mysterious leather-clad admirer, and learn how to move forward when the things she wants most are affected by the decisions of her past.
And if you want to watch the trailer:
About the author:
Carol Thomas lives on the south coast of England with her husband, four children and lively young Labrador. She has been a playgroup supervisor and taught in primary schools for over fifteen years, before dedicating more of her time to writing. Carol is a regular volunteer at her local Cancer Research UK shop. She has a passion for reading, writing and people watching and can often be found loitering in local cafes working on her next book.
Carol writes contemporary romance novels, with relatable heroines whose stories are layered with emotion, sprinkled with laughter and topped with irresistible male leads.
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