Over the weekend, I had the pleasure of being interviewed by Mandy the Bookworm, who was “lucky” enough to win a copy of If I Never in a Goodreads.com book giveaway not so long ago. Below are a few of her excellent questions with my quite often long-winded answers.
Is the setting based on a real place; is there the Italian Gardens, Lovers’ Leap, et cetera?
It is based on a real place — an amalgam of real places, actually, with lots of fictional meddling! Redburn is actually based on a place in the north-east of England called Saltburn. The Italian Gardens, in a slightly different form, certainly exist, though Lovers’ Leap doesn’t.
Tara’s mother seems quite accommodating, is this a bit of wishful thinking of how a mother-in-law should be in your mind?
I don’t think so, no. I would never want to write a stereotypical representation of “the mother-in-law”, so it’s probably true that I’m inclined to shy away from anything bordering on that! However, Tara is someone who’s had some pretty difficult things to contend with over the years. Her mother, naturally, is well aware of this and when she sees how happy, relatively speaking, Price makes her, she wants it to work. There are enough obstacles without her adding more, I imagine her reasoning to be, and so she makes Price as welcome and comfortable as possible — to the point of overcompensating, at times! Plus I think she genuinely likes Price.
Will we be seeing any characters from If I Never in any future novels?
I very much doubt it. There are, quite deliberately, a number of sequel setups in If I Never, but my aim with these was to simply suggest the various paths their lives might take — the uncertainty of it all. A full-blown sequel would weaken the concept but… never say never, right? I suppose they might turn up again one day.
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