Thursday, December 7, 2017

Take a Chance on Me by Carol Wyer - Book Review, Interview & Giveaway

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Review by Suze

Charlie is heartbroken. She lost her daughter and her marriage didn't survive this terrible tragedy. She's going through the motions, but isn't exactly living any longer. Charlie's best friend Mercedes has an idea and together they make Carpe Diem lists, mini bucket lists with daring things to do in the near future. Soon the idea is turning into an actual event and Charlie is trying to raise money for her beloved hospital radio station. She has to do things out of her comfort zone, will she be brave enough to do everything that's being asked of her?

Charlie could use some love and attention. She has good friends, but she's lonely. When she meets Jake there are sparks. However, there's something about him she doesn't completely trust. Is he really a gentle journalist looking for a positive story or does his character also have a darker side? Will Charlie have a second chance at love and maybe find some happiness in her life again after everything she's been through?

Take a Chance on Me is a wonderful story about challenges, love, friendship and finding a way to live again after being broken. Carol Wyer writes about Charlie's obstacles in a beautiful emphatic way. Charlie is a kind woman with a big heart. She has a lot to offer and after losing everything she held dear she doesn't feel like she'll ever have fun anymore. It was fabulous to see how Mercedes makes her friend smile again and how she makes sure Charlie finds some joy in life after so many years of grief. Take a Chance on Me has a perfect amount of depth and there's also a nice feelgood factor, a hopeful lightness that gives the story a lovely sparkle.

Carol Wyer's writing is easy to read. I flew through the pages and read Take a Chance on Me in one sitting. It's a story that's difficult to put down. Besides Charlie's challenges there's a gripping aspect as well that makes the story even more fascinating. I was intrigued and couldn't wait to find out more. I loved how Carol Wyer uses a little bit of suspense to give her story an extra layer. Take a Chance on Me is a charming heartwarming book filled with entertainment and intrigues. I really loved this terrific novel.

Advice

If you love bucket list stories with a great feelgood factor Take a Chance on Me would be a perfect choice.

About Carol Wyer


Carol E. Wyer is an award-winning author whose humorous books take a light-hearted look at getting older and encourage others to age disgracefully. More recently she has chosen to write for the "dark side" and embarked on a series of thrillers, starting with the gripping best-seller, Little Girl Lost.
Her book Grumpy Old Menopause won The People's Book Prize Award for non-fiction 2015.
Carol has been interviewed on numerous radio shows discussing 'Irritable Male Syndrome' and 'Ageing Disgracefully' and on BBC Breakfast television. She has had articles published in national magazines 'Woman's Weekly' featured in 'Take A Break', 'Choice', 'Yours' and 'Woman's Own' magazines and writes regularly for The Huffington Post.
Carol is a signed author with Bookouture and Delancey Press.

Links

Website: http://www.carolwyer.co.uk/home/4593844893
Blog: https://grumpyoldmenopause.com/
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/AuthorCarolEWyer/
Twitter: https://twitter.com/carolewyer
YouTube: https://www.youtube.com/user/facing50

Interview

1. Could you tell us a bit about yourself?

I live on a windy hill, in rural Staffordshire with Mr Grumpy, my husband, who’s been the inspiration behind many of the comedy characters in my early works. Before I became a full-time writer in 2010, I was a teacher and a linguist. I ran my own language company and taught and translated for companies.

My first novel Mini Skirts and Laughter Lines which I initially self-published, launched my career. It won several awards for humour and garnered attention from the media. I was even featured in Woman’s Own magazine.

Fuelled by its success, I wrote more comedies and a couple of non-fiction humorous guides about aging which propelled me into the limelight and I appeared on numerous BBC radio stations, several international radio stations, NBC television and BBC Breakfast television, and Sky television discussing age-related subjects such as ‘Irritable Male Syndrome’ and ‘Grumpy Old Menopause’. In 2015 I won the prestigious People’s Book Prize Award for Grumpy Old Menopause.

I’ve also written articles for, and featured in several national women’s magazines, including Take A Break, Choice, Woman’s Weekly and Woman's Own.

After my fifth published comedy, I changed direction in 2017 with a series of psychological thrillers, published by Bookouture, featuring DI Robyn Carter. The first, LITTLE GIRL LOST released in January 2017, had rave reviews, reached #2 in

the Amazon UK charts and has since sold over 100,000 copies.

There’s not much else to say other than I absolutely love writing and can’t imagine a day when I don’t wake up with a new idea for a character or plot, so up until then, Mr Grumpy will have to put up with a dirty house and ready-made meals.

2. Where do you find the inspirations for your stories?

I really don’t know. I seem inundated with ideas. No sooner do I get one written down and another appears from nowhere. My mother always told me I had a vivid imagination and that’s been the case all my life.

I get much of my material from life, listening to people and a horrifically accurate recall, which means I can think of something that I heard or learned about decades ago.

3. Do you have a writing routine?

I was very ill last year, so I’ve had to change my routine from working non-stop and all through the night. I now take regular breaks so my routine looks like this:

Up at 6 a.m. check emails and set up and share posts on social media until 8 a.m.

Have a break for breakfast.

Write or continue on social media for only an hour until 10 a.m.

Do exercise routine on my stability ball and yoga-type stretches then, housework, shopping etc. until 2:30 p.m.

Write from 2:30 p.m. until 6:00 p.m.

Time out for dinner and an hour of television then early to bed at 9-9:30 p.m. Wait until other half is asleep, get up, go to office and write until I’m so tired I fall asleep at some time between 2 and 4 a.m.

Having insomnia has its benefits!

4. What do you like the most about writing romance?

I enjoyed writing comedies because the reaction from readers

was amazing and my email inbox was always stuffed full of emails from people thanking me for making them laugh, or for lifting their spirits.

Moving to the ‘dark side’ and writing thrillers was a leap of faith, but I’m so glad I made that jump. I LOVE surprising people. Nowadays, my inbox is equally filled with emails from readers saying they didn’t see the twists and turns coming in the books, or guess the identity of the murderer, and begging me for more DI Robyn Carter books. Nothing cheers me more than knowing somebody is enjoying my books.

5. If you're not writing or reading what do you like to do?

I don’t seem to have much time for anything other than writing and reading these days, but if I get an afternoon to myself, I’ll put on my favourite music and draw. I have a huge box of pencils. I spend more time organizing them into neat rows of colours, than actually drawing, but it’s extremely therapeutic. I draw from photographs taken on our travels and am self-taught. I’m not great at it but I once got a commission for a picture I drew of a scene at an Italian lake. It was probably my best picture.

6. Could you describe your main characters in six words each?

DI Robyn Carter – driven, meticulous, dependable, moral, independent, broken
Sergeant Mitz Patel – outgoing, kind, trustworthy, unruffled, ambitious, considerate
PC Anna Shamash – youthful, gifted, sensible, serious, resolute, loyal
DI Tom Shearer – mocking, ambitious, chilled, arrogant, devious, bruised
PI Ross Cunningham – dedicated, light-hearted, generous, likeable, amusing, trustworthy

7. Are there certain elements that a story by you has to have, so readers can easily recognize it as yours?

Up until I started writing thrillers, my voice was evident in my humour. I have a specific type of humour and chatty style that transcends all my books. I like to write as if I’m telling somebody a story. With the series of thrillers I don’t have that although one or two of my characters still carry that voice for me. Now, I have to make a reader gasp in amazement at a twist or surprise in my plot. If you don’t come away saying, ‘Wow, I didn’t see that coming!” then I’ve failed.

8. What makes your heart beat faster?

Too much wine! Seriously, a gritty, gripping thriller will always make my heart beat faster whether that be a book or a television drama. Add some sinister music and my heart will be hammering like crazy.

9. What's the best writing advice you've ever been given?

Be patient. I wish I’d been more patient when I was hoping to publish my first book. Like so many authors, as soon as it was written, I wanted to get it out there. Now, I wish I’d put it away in a drawer and looked at it a year later, all the while writing other books so I had a several works to offer agents and publishers.

10. What can we expect from you in the future?

I’m currently working on Book 4 in the DI Robyn Carter series. So far, the books have been really well received and several readers have asked if I’d consider doing a spin off series featuring one of the characters, Ross Cunningham, Robyn’s PI cousin. Let’s just say I’m investigating that possibility along with another separate series of crime thrillers.

Giveaway

One very lucky reader of With Love for Books will receive a digital copy of Take a Chance on Me and a beautiful book cover necklace.

a Rafflecopter giveaway

The winner will be notified by email and has 3 days to respond. All of our giveaways are international.

16 comments:

  1. Take a Chance on Me sounds like a laugh-out-loud, feel-good romantic comedy.

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    1. Thank you, Solange - it's my very favourite of all my books.

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  2. Enjoyed reading your interview. I like drawing, too.

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    1. Thank you, Wanda. I'm not terribly good at it but I find it very relaxing.

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  3. I really enjoyed reading your interview, thank you!

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  4. great interview, your book looks interesting and absorbing xx

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    1. Ruth, thank you very much indeed. I hope you get the chance to read some of them. I certainly enjoy writing them. x

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  5. Lol, I like how you call him Mr Grumpy

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  6. I love that cover, sounds like a great read!

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    1. Thank you Judy. It is really my favourite book AND I did all the challenges in the book - changed my life. I have a very soft spot for this book and the character Mercedes.

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  7. This story reminds me of P.S I Love You. Still it sounds interesting.

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    1. Hi Sara. I loved that book. Cried so much at the end. No...it isn't quite like it but I can see why you'd think so. The challenges and story are way different and the characters (especially Bert) no way resemble those in PS I Love You. Hope you get the chance to see how different it is. :D

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  8. Suze, thank you so much for this wonderful review and giveaway. I'm so proud to have this book featured as it means a lot to me - it was written from the heart and I hope inspires many to Carpe Diem ;)

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  9. Awww, Carol knows how much I love her and her #Darkside so I'm sure this will appeal as well :) xx

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