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Debbie Viggiano: Flings and Arrows


I'm chuffed to bits to be back in the Guest Room to talk about my second novel, Flings and Arrows.

This is a contemporary romance with lots of humour. The spotlight is on a set of neighbours who collectively span three generations. They are all looking for love, but not necessarily in the conventional way. The novel follows two fledgling relationships and one stale marriage, how romance can go wrong and – ultimately – how relationships can unwittingly impact upon others.

In an attempt to write "something different" I created widowed June who's heart may still be seventeen but in reality is seventy years old. Why shouldn't pensioners have some romance too! Next door neighbours Steph and Si Garvey have known each other pretty much all their lives and married very young. They are as familiar with each other as a pair of comfortable slippers. Too comfortable. Mid-life crisis threatens. Their son, Tom Garvey, will be starting university after the long summer holidays. Tom is an eighteen year old walking hormone hiding a secret. He is determined to use the summer break to get his leg over as many times as possible and with whomever possible with little regard about the consequences.

I created "real" characters because I want them to be believable. So June is juggling her meagre savings, Steph is working in Tesco's, Si is a plumber worrying about self-employment in recession, and Tom is the wannabe student where nothing worries him too much – apart from that troublesome secret. They are all likeable and, being human, they are all flawed. Here's the book blurb:


Steph Garvey has been married to husband Si for 24 years. Steph thought they were soulmates. Until recently. Surely one's soulmate shouldn't put Chelsea FC before her? Or boycott caressing her to fondle the remote control? Fed up, Steph uses her Tesco staff discount to buy a laptop. Her friends all talk about Facebook. It's time to get networking.

Si is worried about middle-age spread and money. Being a self-employed plumber isn't easy in recession. He's also aware things aren't right with Steph. But Si has forgotten the art of romance. Although these days Steph prefers cuddling her laptop to him. Then Si's luck changes work wise. A mate invites Si to partner up on a pub refurbishment contract.

Son Tom has finished Sixth Form. Tom knows where he's going regarding a career. He's not quite so sure where he's going regarding women and lurches from one frantic love affair to the next.

Widowed neighbour June adores the Garveys as if her own kin. And although 70, she's still up for romance. June thinks she's struck gold when she meets salsa squeeze Harry. He has a big house and bigger pension – key factors when you've survived a winter using your dog as a hot water bottle. June is vaguely aware that she's attracted the attention of fellow dog walker Arnold, but her eyes are firmly on Harry as "the catch".

But then Cupid's arrow misfires causing madness and mayhem. Steph rekindles a childhood crush with Barry Hastings; Si unwittingly finds himself being seduced by barmaid Dawn; June discovers Harry is more than hot to trot; and Tom's latest strumpet impacts on all of them. Will Cupid's arrow strike again and, more importantly, strike correctly? There's only one way to find out…

You can buy Flings and Arrows as an e-book. Also, why not visit Debbie's web site and blog?

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