BLOG TOUR: The Dress by Jane L Rosen

The Dress is a beautiful new read by screenwriter Jane L Rosen. Festive and heartwarming, the novel focuses on nine women whose lives are changed by the perfect dress of the season. Jane has joined us as part of her blog tour, and gives us an insight into the novel and her inspiration behind it!

Please can you tell us about The Dress is 15 words or less?
A tale of one extraordinary dress and the lives of the nine women it touches.

What inspired you to write The Dress?
The impetus for this book came from an urban legend of sorts—

The story of a dress in the 80’s allegedly returned to Bloomingdales covered in formaldehyde. I have no idea if the story is true or not but it left me wondering, “What ever could have happened to that dress?”  I worked my way backwards from there and the story of Nine Women, One Dress was born.

Where do you do most of your writing?
When the words are coming easy to me I write at my dining room table in my apartment in Manhattan. When they’re not I force myself to sit in a New York Public Library. Although they are naturally supposed to be quiet places they are actually filled with hushed or silent distractions. There is something about the atmosphere that forces me into my work.

What is your favourite book?
It’s a tie between A Tree Grows in Brooklyn and To Kill A Mockingbird. It’s really the writing that moves me most in both of them. I can read them over and over again.  I also love The Prince of Tides by Pat Conroy and The Hotel New Hampshire by John Irving. More recently, I was very moved by Between the World and Me by Ta-Nehisi Coates.

Which part of The Dress did you enjoy writing the most?
The story of Arthur and Felicia was probably the most enjoyable to write. It’s such a simple love story and it flowed out of me easily.  I enjoyed writing the characters of Tomàs and Ruthie who work in the dress department at Blookmingdales the most. Their personalities and thoughts made me laugh as I was creating them.

Who is your favourite literary heroine?
Jo from Little Women. She is strong, smart, opinionated and willing to do anything for her family. She reminds me of my three daughters rolled up into one.

Do you have any tips for readers who are looking to become published writers?
Write your first draft as if no one is reading it then edit, edit and edit some more. Don’t get discouraged. Listen to the voice in your head that says you’re great, not the one that says otherwise.

Are you working on anything else at the moment and if so, can you tell us?
A novel called The August of Esmè Nash.

It’s the story of a 28-year-old Upper East-side socialite whose life is upended just as her long-time shrink leaves town for the month.

Thanks, Jane!

The Dress by Jane L Rosen
Natalie is a Bloomingdale’s salesgirl mooning over her lawyer ex-boyfriend who’s engaged to someone else after just two months. Felicia has been quietly in love with her happily married boss for twenty years; now that he’s a lonely widower, she just needs the right situation to make him see her as more than the best executive assistant in Midtown Manhattan. 

Andrea is a private detective specializing in gathering evidence on cheating husbands—a skill she unfortunately learned from her own life—and can’t figure out why her intuition tells her the guy she’s tailing is one of the good ones when she hasn’t trusted a man in years. For these three women, as well as half a dozen others in sparkling supporting roles—a young model fresh from rural Georgia, a diva Hollywood star making her Broadway debut, an overachieving, unemployed Brown grad who starts faking a fabulous life on social media, to name just a few—everything is about to change, thanks to the dress of the season, the perfect little black number everyone wants to get their hands on…

Be sure to check out the other stops on the tour!

BOOK REVIEW: Mistletoe on 34th Street by Lisa Dickenson

Now that it's getting ever closer to Christmas, there's nothing nicer on a chilly, dark evening than curling up with a festive read. One of which is Mistletoe on 34th Street by the lovely Lisa Dickenson.

Okay, so if you read this blog regularly, you might be aware that I'm a big fan of Lisa's books. Mainly because they're the perfect blend of romantic and fun, with great characters and some hilarious moments. Her novels include Catch Me If You Cannes, You Had Me at Merlot and The Twelve Dates of Christmas, which was a fantastic winter read. And Mistletoe on 34th Street is just as fun.

Olivia has never experienced a snow-covered, 'traditional' Christmas before. Having grown up in a family that chose winter sun over decking the halls, she's not sure what all the fuss is about. So when she and her colleagues are stranded in New York after a work trip, Olivia is perfectly happy spending the holiday season in the Big Apple. 
Jon, Olivia's friend, on the other hand is desperate to get home in time for his big family get-together. Nevertheless, determined to make the best out of the situation, he sets out to show Olivia how enchanting Christmas in New York can be. And when handsome New Yorker Elijah is added to the mix, could the magic of the season finally be working its charm on Olivia? As 25 December draws closer, Olivia suddenly finds herself with a decision to make: who does she really want to kiss under the mistletoe this Christmas?

Olivia isn't really a Christmas person. Coming from a family that's rarely together during the festive season, Christmas for Liv normally results in a whole lot of 'me time' - just the way she likes it. But just as she's getting ready to relax, her manager at the charity she works for puts her in charge of running the annual conference in New York. Getting the company noticed at the conference could be huge for the charity, so Olivia is determined to make a good impression.

Meanwhile, Liv's friend Jon is also attended the conference representing his company, HeForShe. The pair have been friends for a while, and when the opportunity arises to explore a city so magical at this time of year, Liv can hardly refuse. It's just a work trip...right?

As Liv sets out to complete the task for her manager, she's pulled into the beautiful, fairytale of New York with Jon for company, and others too, such as the lovely Elijah. What Liv assumed would be a quiet Christmas alone soon turns into a winter adventure (and of course, with some hilarious mishaps along the way!)

I really loved this Mistletoe on 34th Street; it truly puts you in the festive mood, and Liv is such a nice, hardworking and wonderfully funny character. The novel contains all the ingredients for a perfect Christmas read; laughs, romance, a gorgeous setting, winter charm, a great cast of characters and an easily lovable heroine.

Rating: 5/5

NEW RELEASES: New Blood by Lorna Peel

Today is the release day of New Blood, the new novel by Only You author Lorna Peel. The novel focuses on Sophia, who heads back to Yorkshire for a new job, but gets more than she bargained for in new boss Baron Heaton...

Sophia Nelson returns to her home town in Yorkshire, England to begin a new job as tour guide at Heaton Abbey House. There, she meets the reclusive Thomas, Baron Heaton, a lonely workaholic.  
Despite having a rule never to become involved with her boss, Sophia can’t deny how she finds him incredibly attractive. 

When she overhears the secret surrounding his parentage, she is torn. But is it the attraction or the fear of opening a Pandora’s box that makes her keep quiet about it? 
How long can she stay at the abbey knowing what she does?