Wednesday, 9 December 2015

Guest Post: It Can't Be Nearly Christmas! by Julia Roberts

Today it's my pleasure to welcome QVC host and author Julia Roberts to the blog to talk about the inspiration behind her Liberty Sands trilogy.

Is Christmas really only a couple of weeks away? And am I the only one who has done virtually nothing yet? No presents bought, no decorations up, not even a Christmas card written, although I have made two Christmas cakes, one for home and one for work, both currently languishing in the cupboard soaked in brandy.  

In my defence, I have been very busy getting my second novel ready for its paperback publication day deadline of December 3rd - I just made it by the skin of my teeth. It's hard to believe that until May this year I had never had a novel published and now I have two. They are books one and two of the Liberty Sands trilogy, Life's a Beach and Then... and If He Really Loved Me..., with the final part due out in May 2016 - I do work best when I have a deadline.

The idea for the trilogy came to me when I was supposed to be recuperating after ten months of treatment for Chronic Myeloid Leukaemia. My long suffering other half, Chris, had taken me on the holiday of a lifetime to the stunningly beautiful island of Mauritius. It had been Mother's Day just prior to our holiday and my children had bought me a notebook with the words, 'Hold On People... I'm Having An Idea' on the cover. On the first morning of our holiday that is exactly what I had, the idea for a novel. I began scribbling copious notes and soon realised that, with all the twists and turns in the plot, there was far too much to squeeze into one book and so the trilogy was born.

The first book was set in Mauritius, which worked well as the main character, Holly, is a travel blogger. She is a single mum of a twenty year old son, Harry, whose father deserted them before he was born... or did he? That is what Harry determines to find out in the sequel, If He Really Loved Me..., after discovering that his mum is pregnant and has no intention of informing the baby's father, Philippe, after an acrimonious break-up. The enviably close relationship that Harry and Holly share is put under enormous pressure when a chance meeting brings Harry face to face with Philippe. 

This second book begins in the Maldives, transports us to Barbados and Los Angeles, and also to one of the most beautiful areas of the UK, the Gower peninsula in south Wales, which I had never visited before my son, Daniel, got a job working for Swansea City football club earlier this year. I wonder if the plot of my second book would have been different if Daniel hadn't accepted the job? Maybe it was fate.

Thanks for letting me share a little bit about my novels with you but now I really must go and write - no, not book three, I'm talking about Christmas cards!

Holly Wilson has landed a dream job but there is one proviso... she must keep it secret, and that means telling lies. Holly hates telling lies. 

Her latest assignment has brought her to the paradise island of Mauritius where she meets a British couple, Robert and Rosemary, who share a tragic secret of their own. 

The moment they introduce Holly to handsome writer, Philippe, she begins to fall in love, something she hasn't allowed herself to do for twenty years. 

But Philippe has not been completely honest and when Holly stumbles across the truth, she feels totally betrayed. 

                         If Holly can’t trust her own son, who can she trust? 

Single mum, Holly Wilson, and her twenty-year-old son Harry have an enviably close relationship but when Harry finds out that she is pregnant and, for reasons unknown to all but herself, intends to raise the baby alone again, he begins to question her decision not to tell him about his own father, who abandoned them before his birth. 

Upon discovering his father’s name, Harry secretly embarks on his search for the truth, a search which takes him to Los Angeles where he uncovers a tragic story. Still reeling from what he has learned, an extraordinary twist of fate brings Harry and Philippe, the father of Holly’s unborn child, face to face. Should Harry tell him about the baby and risk damaging his relationship with his mum forever? If he does, will Philippe want to be a husband and father? And will Holly be prepared to give Philippe a second chance?

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