One Summer in Italy
When Sofia Bianchi’s father Aldo dies, it makes her stop and look at things afresh. Having been his carer for so many years, she knows it’s time for her to live her own life – and to fulfil some promises she made to Aldo in his final days.
So there’s nothing for it but to escape to Italy’s Umbrian mountains where, tucked away in a sleepy Italian village, lie plenty of family secrets waiting to be discovered. There, Sofia also finds Amy who is desperately trying to find her way in life after discovering her dad isn’t her biological father.
Sofia sets about helping Amy through this difficult time, but it’s the handsome Levi who proves to be the biggest distraction for Sofia, as her new life starts to take off…
I would like to welcome Sue Moorcroft again to chellsandbooks it is an absolute pleasure. Sue kindly agreed to write a feature to celebrate her wonderful new novel One Summer in Italy.
About Sue Moorcroft:
Sue Moorcroft is a Sunday Times and international bestselling author and has reached the coveted #1 spot on Amazon Kindle. She’s won the Readers’ Best Romantic Novel award and the Katie Fforde Bursary, and has been nominated for several other awards, including Romantic Novel of the Year (contemporary).
Her short stories, serials, columns, writing ‘how to’ and courses have appeared around the world.
So I will hand over to Sue:
“I’ve written quite a few posts about why I chose the Umbrian setting for One Summer in Italy so this time I’d like to talk about the rest of the book, and how I put it together.
I had a few ideas for different characters. Sofia, the heroine, was pretty clear to me from the start. She had to be a seasonal worker. I knew she was going to have one Italian parent so she could definitely work in Italy – I was a bit worried about Brexit derailing it, otherwise. But I wanted her to be seeing her dad’s home town of Montelibertà for the first time. What had kept her away until then? Why didn’t she know more about it? Where was her English mother? It’s common for me to think of a situation and then create a backstory to fit it so I decided Sofia’s had lost her mother when she was a child. Her father, Aldo, had been unwell for many years, so Sofia had become his carer. Why didn’t she know her Italian family at all? There had been a feud. How could I ensure that Sofia would do everything Aldo wanted to? I made each point a dying promise. I was about ready to begin Sofia’s thread.
Levi was easier in some ways but harder in others. I knew why I wanted him to be in Montelibertà – no, I can’t tell you! – so it was a question of getting him there. At the time I was planning the book I heard someone talking about travelling around Europe on a motorbike. He did it several times a year, he said. He was so full of enthusiasm that I decided to give Levi a motorbike too. His family’s as important to him as Sofia’s family is to her, but whilst hers are either gone or mysteriously hidden from her, his are very much present and at least he knows who’s who (doesn’t he?).
What I needed desperately to bring together Levi’s backstory with what happens in the book, was a ‘unifying factor’. I remembered someone from my teen years. He managed a garage on a corner and if teenagers tried to cut the corner via his forecourt he used to rush out to shout at them. (You can imagine that on a hot afternoon, this can be quite an amusing things for teenagers to do.) I made that man into Levi’s dad, Bryan ‘Bullet’ Gunn, known around the town for shooting out and ordering people off the forecourt.
The above formed the starting point for One Summer in Italy. There is more to the plot, of course, but without me knowing these things I don’t think the book could have worked.
I’m beginning to think about my summer 2019 book so any time now I’ll be searching out my pad and beginning work on the answers to a few questions …”
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