After a holiday hiatus, the Featured New Book spotlight is back in action! (I had to give the spotlight operator time off. Union rules. Plus, he was going to tell Roadie Poet about what a hardass I am. Hello? One day of work a week? Spotlight operators should have it so good!)
Today’s guest is the lovely Julia McDermott, whose new book, Make That Deux, sounds simply delightful. But before we get to the book, here’s the song behind it.
The song that makes me think of my book is LOVE AND AFFECTION by Joan Armatrading, recorded live in 1976:
MAKE THAT DEUX is the story of Jenny Miles, who spends her junior year of college studying in the south of France in the late 1970s. Jenny leaves behind her boyfriend Phil in Chapel Hill, North Carolina, where the two met and became a couple almost a year before the novel’s opening. Jenny has studied French for years and is ecstatic to be able to realize her dream of participating in UNC’s new year-abroad program, and to see Europe. But she’s anxious and uneasy about being separated from the person with whom she’s been madly in love for many months.
Phil and Jenny manage their long-distance relationship via handwritten letters and a few very expensive phone calls, and Phil plans to come see Jenny over the winter holiday break. But in the fall, when unexplained issues force Phil to renege on his promise to visit, Jenny begins to suspect his feelings for her. Later, an accidental incident fuels Jenny’s doubts about their relationship and whether they are meant to be. Then, as her friendship with French-speaking (but not French) Lucas develops in romance, Jenny is forced to make some decisions.
The novel has three parts, and Part 3 is entitled OPEN TO PERSUASION, taken from the beginning lines in Armatrading’s song:
“I am not in love
But I’m open to persuasion
East or West
Where’s the best
Here are a few lines from Part 3:
“…I left and trudged back to the room. I unlocked the door like a cat burglar while Trish slept soundly. Good. I changed clothes and softly crawled into bed. What a day it had been. Maybe it was for the best that tonight had turned out like it had…
Love and affection, that was what I wanted. With someone. I just wasn’t sure with who anymore.”
Joan Armatrading! Who’d have thought such a classic would grace THESE pages?
Believe me, I’m not arguing.
Here’s the book blurb:
Three American college girls living in an apartment on the Mediterranean. Two boyfriends back home. “The One” (and only), if it’s “meant to be” — whatever that means!
Jenny Miles has three goals: to speak French like a native, to travel all over Europe, and to have a blast. Meanwhile, two men compete for her attention and amour, ici et là. C’est compliqué!
Take 10 months. Add 2 (surprise) transatlantic flights, 2 Greek isles, 1 moped (une mobylette) and beaucoup de lettres! Subtract 1 phone, 1 promise to be faithful, and 1 bikini top. La solution?
Make that…a year that Jenny will never forget.
Ready to go buy? (Why not???)
Smashwords (note that this IS an affiliate link, please and thank you!)