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Welcome Carla Caruso - Interview and Giveaway!

ANNOUNCEMENT:  The winner of a copy of Carla's novel is Patsy Collins.  Congratulations Patsy

Carla Caruso's my guest on MBB today.  She's come to tell us about her new novel SECOND CHANCE.  It's a timeslip novel about Flora, a thirtysomething woman who has a lot of regrets in her life and miraculously gets a second chance to go back and do things differently the second time around.  I'm currently in the throes of reading the book and am finding it hilarious.

So, Carla, let's hear from you!

Your books seem to be really fun, light fiction – of course I know you shouldn’t judge a book by its cover. How would you describe your writing? 

Actually you’ve probably hit the nail on the head. I’m a fan of romantic comedy/chick-lit authors myself, like Sophie Kinsella and Maggie Alderson, plus rom-com films, so I guess that flows into my work. Plus, I have a background in magazine and feature writing, which lends itself to a lighter, more conversational tone. So this drifts into my fiction writing, too. I have actually just finished penning a darker, more serious piece and – oh my gosh! – I’m itching to do something humorous and upbeat again. I find it a more fun place to dwell as a writer!

Can you tell us a little about the main characters in your current release, SECOND CHANCE?

Indeed. The heroine is Flora Brunelli, who's fun and feisty but is, well, slightly “living in the past”. She’s stuck in a dead-end graphic design job, single and still moaning about her so-called perfect first boyfriend, Ruben Jax. On the night of her 36th birthday, she finds herself zapped back in time, landing in the summer of 1998 when she was 20 years old. She couldn’t be happier – hey, it’s when she “peaked”. She can change her future for the better. But after a while, Flora begins to wonder if living in the past really will deliver her the happiness she seeks?

Then there’s Lance Devic, her ex’s best friend... Flora never really noticed him before, but he keeps popping up and messing with her head. He’s never been one to embrace the new, preferring old-style music, cars, cameras and clunky antique presses… which may have something to do with him not wanting to forget the past as his mum died when he was young.

Who is your favourite writer and why? Has your favourite writer influenced your own writing? 

Sophie Kinsella, behind the Shopaholic series! Her writing is so funny and easy to read and I just marvel at how she does it. She makes it all look so easy – it just flows – but I bet she puts a lot of blood, sweat and tears into it. I think she has had an influence on me as I love putting my heroines in funny situations a la Sophie!

Did it take you long to write SECOND CHANCE? 

I’m never very good at keeping track of time on projects, but I think it was about six months in between my day job as a freelance journalist. I think I’m getting quicker at pulling stories together though (hopefully!) Being a journalist, I have a short attention span, so I like to be finished with one project and onto another ASAP and not look back (well, not until I see the shiny, published product – all going to plan).

Where do you get the inspiration for your stories? 

The everyday! I find humour in the day-to-day situations and little annoyances we all face – and the different characters I cross paths with. Writing can also be like therapy for any not-so-nice experiences. I can write about them and chortle in hindsight, rather than shuddering every time I’m reminded. It puts a nicer “glow” on past memories (like working for a horrible boss) and gives a reason for things happening in your life – as in, good fodder for my next novel!



On the night of her 35th birthday, Flora Brunelli is full of regrets. The celebrations have turned sour and life hasn't gone according to plan. She wishes she could be 20 again. Then she finds herself zapped back in time, landing in the summer of 1998 when she was 20 years old. The Spice Girls are at the top of the charts and the X-Files is the hit TV show. It's also the week Flora's life unravelled. For Flora, this is a chance to change her future: win back the love of her life, stay friends with her former best mate and succeed in landing her dream job. It should be easy. But her ex's best friend, Lance Devic, who she never really noticed before, keeps popping up and messing with her head. And after a while Flora begins to wonder if living in the past really will deliver her the happiness she seeks?

Buy Links:  Amazon     Amazon UK     Destiny Romance     Apple   

Carla's giving an ecopy of her novel to one lucky commenter to remember to comment before leaving. 


  1. Thanks kindly for having me, Maria!

  2. Sounds like an interesting book. Going back in time is always a dream come true.

    1. If only it could really happen ;)

    2. That would be fun for sure, Carla Thanks for stopping by, Nana.

  3. Sounds like a good book. Thanks for sharing in the interview and the excerpt. I look forward to reading it.

  4. This read was awesome! Thanks Maria for the great interview!

  5. This looks a fab book, Carla. And I love your cover. Caroline x

    1. Hey Caroline, nice to see you over here...(waves...)

  6. Ah yes, I know what you mean about fodder, Carla. I suddenly viewed the grim and ghastly moments in my life in a completely new light when I became a writer. Writing then became a kind of therapy for me, ha ha.
    Your book sounds excellent - nothing beats a great romantic comedy.

    1. I went out for coffee once with an extremely mean male friend and he invited me then made me pay for myself, which left me fuming. So I wrote an article on the dynamics of inviting and entertaining and wrote in this story, making him appear like a completely clueless dork. It was great therapy for my wounded ego and the cheque for the article, when it arrived, sweetened the situation considerably.... Yes, Cherie, writing can be great therapy...

    2. At least I'm not the only one using writing for therapy haha!

  7. Sounds a great read! And I love the cover, too.

    1. I do agree with you Samantha, it's a lovely cover.....thanks for dropping in and leaving a comment....

    2. I quite fancy the cover too - nothing to do with yours truly, of course, hehe

  8. Replies
    1. I'm hoping it's fun - a bit of an escape!

  9. Dont we all wish we had a second chance; what could be better if we had the advantage of hindsight as well?! Very interesting theme. Goodluck.

  10. I really enjoyed this book - so much fun! The interactions between the characters are awesome. :)

    Don't enter me in the giveaway as I already have my own copy :)

    1. Hi Jemi, I've finished the book and really enjoyed it too!

  11. Loved the interview, Maria and Carla! Carla, what a cool idea to go back in the past and have a second chance to do things differently;). Sounds like a very fun read!

    1. Hi Maria, good to see you! It is an interesting idea and it's a fun read, that's true.

    2. Thanks Maria. Yes, I wonder what we'd all do differently - or not - if we had a second chance?

  12. Replies
    1. The cover's getting a lot of compliments, but the book is really good too. thanks for stopping by Charmaine.

    2. I love her red lippy - and nails!

  13. Great interview! A very appealing heroine!


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