Book review: How To Get A (Love) Life - Rosie Blake + Q&A

Some people book last-minute holidays, walk barefoot in the grass or party on a week night. Not Nicola Brown. Nicola is the kind of girl who double-locks the front door, leaves the plastic covering on new furniture, sticks to a super-strict diet and definitely, absolutely Does Not Date.

Her colleague Caroline – loopy, warm and exasperated by her, knows that Nicola's reluctance to lose control means she's living only half a life. And so she lays down the gauntlet: Nicola must cast aside her hang ups and go on as many dates as it takes to find true love in time for Valentine's Day.

The pick of local men is, quite frankly, a bit rubbish. And there are only three months until February 14th. Surely it's an impossible task? But, as Nicola is about to find out on her dodgy dates, letting go isn't quite as scary as she imagined. In fact, it's rather a lot of fun...

My opinion.
I was so thrilled when I got the opportunity to read (& review) How To Get A (Love) Life. I had heard (... well... read) so many great things about it and the cover really stood out and seemed to pop up everywhere. Gorgeous cover!
     The book definitely lived up to my expectations. Nicola is a very interesting main character and I really enjoyed being a part of her journey. And what a journey that is! Not only did she agree to take on a bet to find a date in time for Valentine's day, she also has to let go of the patterns she created over the years. She's stuck in her ways and it limits her. But will she be able to take that big jump in the unknown, by "loosening up"? Or has her friend and colleague Caroline pushed her too far?
     At times I wasn't sure whether I wanted to laugh or die out of humiliation: those dates! I really hope Rosie Blake didn't write all that out of life experience... [Let's find out in the Q&A below!] I would have given up on finding love all together! Poor Nicole! Luckily she has a lot more patience and perseverance than I have. I do have to say thank you, Rosie, because I appreciate my boyfriend even more now, after reading How To Get A (Love) Life!
     How To Get A (Love) Life is a laugh out loud, endearing story about finding love, and trusting the unexpected. I really, really loved this book and I simply cannot wait to read more by Rosie Blake! 


I'm very happy to welcome Rosie Blake for a chat about her book(s) and about herself!

Was it always your dream to become a writer? What inspired/ still inspires you to write?
No I came to writing quite late in my life because my original dream was to be a Country and Western Singer. The thing was I couldn't sing and wasn't from the Deep South. So I scratched that dream and focused on writing. My passion for it came from reading other people's books and becoming lost in the worlds they created. Enid Blyton, Jilly Cooper, Helen Fielding, Emlyn Rees and Josie Lloyd - I wanted to write amusing books with vibrant characters. 

Where did the idea for How To Get A (Love) Life come from?

I wanted to write a character transformation novel. I do believe people can get themselves into a rut and sometimes something extraordinary needs to happen to nudge them out of it. Then I knew I had lots of amusing date stories stored up in my brain, so they needed a home...

How did Nicola's character come about?
Nicola was my lovely girl in a rut so to speak..!

Were any of the worst-date-scenario's based on true events?
I'm afraid so. There was an actor I was dating who spent one evening showing me head shots of himself and asking me to rate them for his little book. Thus Chris was born...

A few years ago you wrote "Harry Potter: The Musical". Being a Potterhead, I have to ask: is there any way we can watch this? What made you write this piece?
Ha, ha, I did! I did! My friend wrote the music and I did the words. It was SUPER inappropriate all about Harry and his sock puppet friend who was his only mate. It was performed by the Bristol University Musical Society one weekend in 2004. I wanted to play Harry but they wouldn't let me. 

Can you reveal anything about future projects?
Yes! I am writing Book 2 at the moment and in love with the setting. A lot of it is based on an island in Malaysia and it is gorgeous being back there in my head all the time. Also I fancy my hero. Quite a lot. The story is about a girl who marries a boy aged 8 in the school playground. When life doesn't pan out as she imagined she decides it would have been OK if she had stayed married. So starts a global search to find her first husband and the madness begins...

Facts about Rosie
Favourite colour YELLOW!! It's probably pretty obvious because of my book cover, website etc 
Favourite song Ha, ha, YELLOW! Actually this can stay as I love Coldplay big time.
Favourite hot drink Really milky hot chocolate. 
Favourite holiday destination Cornwall out of season or Pembrokeshire. I just got back from there and it is completely DELICIOUS.
A random fact about you people would never guess David Beckham, dressed in just a towel, has told me off for singing '2 become 1' too loudly. 

Haha, thank you so much for this Rosie! Such a fun interview!
I'm really sorry you didn't get to play Harry - I'm sure you would've done a great job. I'm going to YouTube hunt now for some footage ;-)
Book #2 already sounds like a winner to me! Can't wait!

Big big thank you, again! Thank you to Kerry at Novelicious as well, 
for contacting me and for the amazing opportunity 
to read and review How To Get A (Love) Life!


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