Today we have the pleasure to take part in Jon Rance’s Blog Tour for his latest novel ‘This Family Life’. It’s a fantastic rom com and perfect for anyone who wants to have a good laugh, so we strongly recommend it. It’s also currently just 99p for the kindle, so we don’t see a reason why you shouldn’t check it out:) Thanks Jon for visiting our blog today!
Hello and a big thank you to This Chick Reads for having me. This is stop number nine on the blog tour for my new book ‘This Family Life’. If you missed the last one you can find it herehttp://book-central.wix.com/bookshelf
On this blog I’m going to talk about the character of Emily. The book is written in a diary format from the point of view of Harry Spencer, a thirtysomething teacher, father, and husband to Emily. Emily was one of the more difficult characters to create and write. In the first book ‘This Thirtysomething Life’ she puts up with a lot from Harry, and the same again in this book. She’s definitely a long-suffering wife, but I never wanted her to be this weak, pathetic, needy person and hopefully what I’ve created is a strong, independent woman, who loves Harry to bits but definitely won’t put up with him being an idiot and will always speak her mind.
Being a man and creating female characters is always something I’m aware of. I think in all my books, I’ve tried to write really strong female lead characters and Emily is no exception. While Harry is often immature, definitely sometimes selfish, and is prone to making terrible decisions, Emily is the rock the relationship and the family. She keeps things together when Harry is doing his best pull them apart, and in ‘This Family Life’ she is the driving force behind her and Harry getting fit and eating healthier. Emily is always trying to improve their life and even when Harry has problems in the bedroom, she’s the one who takes the initiative. I think she’s rather a super wife.
Below is an extract from the book and it’s a conversation I’ve definitely had with my wife. It’s hard for men, especially when babies are very young, to feel that connection that mums just have. I remember worrying that I wasn’t a very good dad, that I didn’t love them enough, and that I was going to ruin their life. The saying is true that women are parents as soon as they conceive and that men don’t become parents until the baby is born. Harry definitely struggles, but Emily comes through once again.
Thursday 31 January 11.30 p.m.
‘Emily, can I ask you something?’
‘Do you think I’m a good dad?’
‘Why are you asking me?’
‘Because I was thinking about how hard I’m trying not to be like Steve, who is a great dad, even if he is slightly annoying. But what sort of dad am I?’
‘Harry, you’re a wonderful father.’
‘Am I though? I get annoyed by so many things parents do. I love William to bits, he’s the best thing in the world, but sometimes I don’t feel very, you know -’
Emily looked across at me with that stare. You know the one – the stare when you’re being a bit of a plonker.
‘Harry, just because you don’t carry around a spare pair of bongos in case your main set of bongos breaks, and you don’t know all the words to every Wiggles song, it doesn’t mean you’re not dad-like.’
‘But how am I dad-like?’
‘For a start we’re having this conversation,’ said Emily. ‘The fact you’re even worried about it means you’re dad-like. You spend a lot of time in the shed, you moan about the weather, you tell terrible jokes, and you dance as though you’ve been rogered by a hot stick. It’s the way you look at William, hold him, cuddle him, and tell him about bands he’s only going to grow up to despise just to annoy you. And you’ve recently started wearing cardigans. You’re a dad, Harry. You aren’t like Steve, but then again, most people aren’t and that’s OK.’
‘Oh, and FYI, cardigans are back in fashion.’
‘Sure they are,’ said Emily with a lovely smile. ‘Sure they are.’
Things that might happen during your first year of parenthood:
1. You’ll get covered in a ‘nuclear’ poo.
2. You’ll be convinced your son is talking with a Japanese accent.
3. You’ll worry that when your son waves, it looks like a Nazi salute.
Of course, this might just be Harry Spencer.
Taking up where This Thirtysomething Life left off, Harry Spencer and is wife Emily are back and trying to survive their first year of parenthood. It has its ups and downs (and a few bits in the middle), but along the way they begin to understand the true meaning of family and what it takes to be a parent.
Featuring a hilarious cast of extras including Harry’s father-in-law Derek, who has a unique problem with Scotch, Steve and Fiona, the parents from children’s entertainment hell, and a yoga instructor with a prominent camel-toe, This Family Life is the ultimate comedy for anyone who is a parent, has a parent, or is thinking about becoming one.