Caroline James is in my hot seat today as part of the blog tour for The Best Boomerville Hotel.
Find out her inspiration for this story, how she feels about aging, the best part of her writing journey so far and much more.
Published by Choc Lit’s Ruby Fiction imprint and available in digital format.
Let the shenanigans begin at the Best Boomerville Hotel …
Jo Docherty and Hattie Contaldo have a vision – a holiday retreat in the heart of the Lake District exclusively for guests of ‘a certain age’ wishing to stimulate both mind and body with new creative experiences. One hotel refurbishment later and the Best Boomerville Hotel is open for business!
Perhaps not surprisingly Boomerville attracts more than its fair share of eccentric clientele: there’s fun-loving Sir Henry Mulberry and his brother Hugo; Lucinda Brown, an impoverished artist with more ego than talent; Andy Mack, a charming Porsche-driving James Bond lookalike, as well as Kate Simmons, a woman who made her fortune from an internet dating agency but still hasn’t found ‘the One’ herself.
With such an array of colourful individuals there’s bound to be laughs aplenty, but could there be tears and heartbreak too and will the residents get more than they bargained for at Boomerville?
Welcome to Jera’s Jamboree.
Please summarise The Best Boomerville Hotel in 20 words or less.
Hotel Boomerville – where the resident’s often get more than they bargained for!
What was the idea/inspiration for your novel?
The Best Boomerville Hotel was inspired by a hotel that I used to own in the Lake District. It was a lovely old building and I never knew what I was waking up to each day as residents from all over the world came through the doors. When I was planning the book my research found that one in three people over the age of fifty in the UK are single and I thought it would be fun to create a virtual hotel for this age group and beyond to discover new experiences, from conservative to whacky, and discover how to make the most of the rest of their lives.
Does your story tackle a social barrier Caroline?
I think that ageing is a social barrier and can leave some people feeling very isolated. One in three people in the UK over the age of fifty, live on their own. This may be through relationships breaking down, divorce, death, caring for an elderly person and even choice. My research found that as we age our confidence can lessen and I wrote Boomerville because I wanted to shout from the rooftops that it is perfectly acceptable to get older and have some fun, find new hobbies and pastimes and to go out of your comfort zone to experience something that will enhance this stage of your life.
Please tell us about some of the characters.
Hattie is the manager of Hotel Boomerville.
The Shaman runs weird and wonderful courses in a large tepee in the garden and is a mysterious figure throughout.
Kate, a guest, is fifty and single and ran an internet dating agency but never found The One herself. She’s nursed her dad through dementia and following his death is facing lonely years ahead.
Andy Mack is tall, handsome and wealthy, also a guest and not all he pretends to be!
Sir Henry and Hugo Mulberry are elderly fun-loving brothers, guests at Boomerville, who are keen to try every course and outing with many unexpected results.
Queenie is a clairvoyant who gathers the guests together in an old gypsy caravan and teaches them how to get in touch with their spiritual world.
If you could choose to be one of your characters Caroline, who would you be?
I’d like to be Hattie. She is larger than life and lives to the extreme, finding fun in everything she does. She eats and drinks with no limit and gets up to all sorts of mischief but underneath has a heart of gold and is just a big softie, loved by everyone who comes under her radar.
One piece of advice for your characters before the opening pages of the book?
Book into Boomerville and hang on tight for the ride of your life!
What scene did you enjoy writing the most?
Hattie’s spin on the potter’s wheel. Determined to have a go a pottery with Paul the handsome potter, she bustles into a class and causes mayhem. I found myself laughing as I wrote this scene and hope that readers will laugh too. Laughter is our best medicine.
If your book is part of a series, what is in the future?
There will be other Boomervilles’ to follow. Readers are already asking for more. Boomerville in Bangkok, Boomerville in Barbados… Boomerville may go global!
Finally Caroline, what has been the best part of your writing journey so far?
Letting myself loose on the page. Something I never thought I could do. To write a novel to completion and type ‘The End’ is an amazing feeling. And getting the opportunity to be on lovely blogs such as yours!
It sounds like a very entertaining read Caroline. Thank you for being my guest today.
Huge thanks for hosting me and The Best Boomerville Hotel.
Happy reading everyone,
The Best Boomerville Hotel Links:
Caroline James has owned and run businesses encompassing all aspects of the hospitality industry, a subject that features in her novels. She is based in the UK but has a great fondness for travel and escapes whenever she can. A public speaker, consultant and food writer, Caroline is a member of the Romantic Novelist’s Association and writes articles and short stories and contributes to many publications.
Her debut novel, Coffee, Tea, The Gypsy & Me is set in North West England, at the time of a famous gypsy horse fair. The book went straight to number three on Amazon and was E-book of the Week in The Sun.
So, You Think You’re A Celebrity…Chef? was runner up the Winchester Writers festival for best TV Drama and takes a light-hearted look at the world of celebrity chefs as they battle it out for fame and fortune. Coffee, Tea, The Caribbean & Me was runner up at The Write Stuff, LBF, 2015 and is an Amazon best-seller and top recommended read by Thomson Holidays. Jungle Rock, a romcom novella set in Australia, revolves around a TV game show.
In her spare time, Caroline can be found trekking up a mountain or relaxing with her head in a book and hand in a box of chocolates.
Connect with Caroline James
FaceBook: Caroline James Author