Hello! Firstly, I’d like to thank Holly for having me on her blog all week for the release of my new novel, Sunday Dinners. Since I published This Thirtysomething Life way back in my thirties (he says sadly), Holly has been a staunch supporter of my work. She’s also a lovely person and writes a wonderful blog, so congratulations to you reader for choosing to read it. So without further ado, I’ll get down to business.
Sunday Dinners is my fourth novel and in many ways it’s quite different to the previous three. Hopefully it still has the qualities that I’m always aiming for of truth, honesty, and humour, all popped in a blender and whizzed up with a good lug of drama. Where it’s different, I think, is that it’s bigger than my other books. It has five main characters and it’s set over sixteen years. There’s a history there and it’s definitely a lot more poignant and dramatic than my other books. I hope that readers of my previous books will appreciate the differences as well as spotting the familiar strokes, while new readers might be tempted to pop back and read my other books.
So what’s Sunday Dinners about? Essentially it’s a comedy drama about a family all trying to survive. In one way or another, each of them has reached a point in their life when they’re moving on, and the Sunday roast dinners is the one thing keeping them together. As I’ve mentioned before, it’s about the delicate balance of holding on and letting go.
Greg, 54, the father, is trying to hold onto his marriage and be a success at work, but is failing at both. His wife, Lizzy, 53, unhappy and dissatisfied with life, is trying to find herself again after twenty-seven years as a housewife. The eldest child, Lucy, 27, always the golden child, successful in her job at the BBC, is suddenly faced for the first time in her life with failure. Matt, 23, the middle child, unambitious and unlucky in love, is trying to turn his life around and ends up doing a lot more. The youngest, Holly, 18, is off to university soon and is having a crisis of sexual identity.
Like all of my books, I’ve tried to balance out the humour and drama and so hopefully what you’re left with is a really well written, engaging, funny and heart-warming story about people. Because that’s what I’m interested in and whether it’s a more serious book like this or a straight up comedy, it’s about being human. Sunday Dinners is also about love, life, marriage, parenthood and the importance of roast dinners. It’s taken me almost two years from start to finish to get this published, so hopefully you’ll be inspired to go out and buy it.
As I said, Holly is hosting me all week and I’ve asked a few author friends of mine to write short pieces about what Sunday roast dinners mean to them. So come back each day and you’ll be able to read short blogs by Nick Spalding, Matt Dunn, Christina Hopkinson, Michele Gorman, Andy Jones, Ian Moore, Sue Watson, Robert Bryndza and Heather Hill. It’s going to be an exciting week! Thanks again. Cheers, Jon X
The Wilde family have always had a roast dinner on Sundays. Greg Wilde made sure of it. Him, his wife, Lizzy, and their three children around the table; for years it was the glue that held them together.
But now with the children all grown up and moving out, and Greg and Lizzy’s marriage facing an uncertain future, their lives are becoming increasingly unstuck. Greg soon begins to realise that creating a happy family is one thing, but staying that way is an entirely different story.
Told from each of the family’s perspectives at their monthly Sunday roast dinners, this is a bittersweet comedy about parenthood, marriage, love, life and roast dinners.
Click here to get hold of your copy of Sunday Dinners.
My review for this AMAZING novel will be up later today. I’d also like to take this opportunity to say a massive thank you to Jon for his kind words, for choosing my blog to host these spectacular insights into Sunday Dinners written by some of my favourite authors and also for writing such cracking books…