In the Cornish town of Talting, everyone is famous for something. Until recently Rose was known for many things: her infectious positivity; her unique artistic talent; and her devotion to childhood sweetheart Lucas.
But two years ago that changed in one unthinkable moment. Now, Rose is known for being the young woman who became a widow aged just twenty-four. Though Rose knows that life must go on, the thought of carving out a new future for herself is one she can barely entertain. Until a newcomer, Robert, arrives in Talting for the summer…
Can Rose allow herself the chance to love again?
Read if you loved: A Hundred Pieces of Me – Lucy Dillon
Victoria Walters Biography
Victoria Walters has always loved creating stories. Her first book was handwritten when she was sixteen years old, and was closely modelled on the Sweet Valley High series.
Victoria studied sociology at Warwick University and has since worked for a business publisher and as a Waterstones bookseller.
She lives in Surrey with her cat Harry (named after Harry Potter, not Harry Styles).
This is her first novel. You can discover more about Victoria – and find pictures of Harry the cat – by following her on Twitter at @Vicky Walters or by visiting her blog at: http://victoria-writes.com/.
Victoria Walters on the Inspiration Behind The Second Love of my Life
I do find the question ‘what inspired you to write your novel?’ a somewhat tricky one. I was so engrossed as I wrote The Second Love Of My Life, the first draft came together very quickly, so it’s hard now to step back and think about how the story came to me.
However, I think the premise came about because I have read a fair few books where the love interest meets an untimely demise at the end and I thought it would be interesting to turn that around and have a story which starts with the loss. The inspiration for the story really came from my main character Rose. She came to me fully formed – I knew she was an artist who was struggling after losing someone close to her.
Dealing with grief is something we all have to face in our lives. I lost my father myself when I was young, so it’s a subject that I’ve thought about a lot. For this book, I wanted to explore how you might face grief when your husband dies suddenly, when you were both so young you thought you had a whole future together.
It was difficult to write a main character so lost in grief and still have readers connect with, and root for, her. I knew that she needed to have people around her to show us what Rose was like before her husband Lucas’s sudden death, and, what she could be like again, so I created a fictional town for her to live in.
I was inspired by the quirky, close-knit town in the TV show The Gilmore Girls in creating Talting. It needed to be a place where Rose had lived her whole life, somewhere she would find really hard to leave. Cornwall felt like the perfect choice. I’d quite happily live in Talting myself! Talting was also inspired by my own hometown in Surrey – some of the events that happen in the novel happen where I live too, such as an annual fair and at Christmas we have a tree-lighting night.
I love seeing characters develop in a story. I enjoy reading coming-of-age stories, and I love books that with a strong emotional pull. It was probably natural that my book would be about a woman finding and learning to love herself, as well as falling in love with someone, and that people would end up shedding a tear reading it. I also hope readers find the story as uplifting and life-affirming as I did writing it.