SUMMER MOVED ON
BY JOANNA LAMBERT
After a long-buried secret tears her family apart, Jess Hayden moves to the South Devon village of Lynbrook to live with her uncle. Rufus owns the village pub, The Black Bull, and having visited before, Jess knows the villagers well…especially one of them.
Talún Hansen has a reputation, making him the kind of man no decent girl should get involved with. Jess, however, has been under his spell from the moment they first met. Although they always seem to bring out the worst in each other, there is no denying the attraction that simmers between them – an attraction Jess knows she needs to keep under control after repeated warnings from her uncle.
As she settles into village life she begins to learn more about this wild, dark-haired gypsy with the compelling eyes, and realises their lives hold many similarities. Despite her uncle’s warnings, she begins to spend time with him. For Jess, the coming summer holds passion; for Talún the hope that he has at last found someone who truly cares for him.
But as autumn approaches, a dark shadow from Jess’s past returns, bringing far-reaching and unwanted changes for both of them.
HEROES AND VILLAINS
Once you’ve worked out how you’re going to kick start your latest WIP the next important thing is to look at your cast in more detail: to put flesh on bones, give them personalities and a background. I usually create a bio for each character central to my story, giving them a real identity –physical features, education, and a personal history – so I’m able to write as if I actually know them.
As significant as all these details are, however, it’s what the individual will come to represent in the book that is as important. One of the central characters in many romance novels is the antagonist – the villain. This is the person who, for whatever reason, causes trouble and puts obstacles in the way of our two would-be lovers. If he/she weren’t around then life would be plain sailing and the story would be over before it had a chance to begin.
I’m a prolific reader as well as a writer with romance definitely one of my favourite categories. It’s a fairly broad genre which can cover many different aspects of relationships. It can be light-hearted or serious and the settings for the stories can be historical, futuristic or contemporary. For me, however, romance is only one side of the coin. I also enjoy exploring relationships and how peoples’ actions can impact on others and change things, either for good or bad. My books are therefore a blend of romance and drama and because of this I find the villain a very powerful character. They drive the conflict, keeping the reader constantly turning the page to find out what happens next.
In my trilogy – When Tomorrow Comes, Love Lies and Promises and The Ghost of You and Me – trouble came in the form of central character Ella’s mother Melissa (Mel). She was glamorous, vain and totally self-absorbed. She made Ella’s life an absolute misery, constantly interfering in her love life in her search for the ‘right kind’ of husband for her daughter. None of this was for Ella’s benefit, of course, it was all about promoting Mel’s social ambitions.
Book four – Between Today and Yesterday – caught up with the same characters in the late 1980s. This time, Marcie Maguire, a famous American diva and someone from Ella’s husband Matt’s past returned. She was looking for revenge after losing him to Ella many years before. By the fifth and last book of the series – The Other Side of Morning – Matt and Ella had settled down to a peaceful life together and it was the turn of the next generation. This story focussed on their niece Charlotte. In love with handsome Italian restaurateur Marco D’Alessandro, she fell foul of his stepmother Thérèse who had plans to marry her stepson off to a young Chianti heiress in order to expand the family’s business empire.
In my latest book – Summer Moved On – we meet Lily, the newest female to take on the role of the woman everyone loves to hate. She is twenty years old; much younger than her three contemporaries in my other books, but just as destructive. Her character was influenced by a novel I read back in 1998 called ‘Concerning Lily’ by Sally Brampton. In it, we are introduced to Lily Clifton, a young woman who manages to cause irreparable damage to the lives of three couples who befriend her. The Lily in Summer Moved On has a lot of similarities to her namesake. She lacks a conscience and is totally focussed on taking what she wants and causing trouble, especially for the main character, Jess.
Of course, we haven’t seen the last of Lily because I’ve a sequel to write. Watercolours in the Rain will see her back again as we take up the story six years after the first book ends. What sort of problems will she be causing? Well, that’s still very much under wraps at the moment. All I can say is her behaviour will be as controversial as it has been in Summer Moved On! Watch this space…
About Joanna Lambert
Jo Lambert was born and brought up in rural Wiltshire in a small village on the edge of Salisbury Plain. She has spent most of her working life in Senior PA or Admin Management roles both in the private and public sectors. Her love of reading soon spilled over into writing and her first novel When Tomorrow Comes was published in 2009. Four other books – Love, Lies and Promises, The Ghost of You and Me, Between Today and Yesterday and The Other Side of Morning followed. They formed a series following the lives and loves of four Somerset families.
Jo lives on the eastern side of the Georgian city of Bath with her husband, one small grey feline called Mollie and a forty eight year old white MG Midget called Bridget. She loves travel, red wine, rock music and cooking for friends.
Summer Moved On, her sixth novel, is the first part of a two book love story set in South Devon.
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