I’m delighted to welcome scriptwriter and author Jane Lacey-Crane to my blog today. Jane is interviewing Jack Chance from her debut novel Secrets and Tea at Rosie Lee’s.
Let’s find out a bit more about the book
Welcome to Rosie Lee’s cafe in the heart of the East End – where there’s not an avocado, slice of sourdough or double-shot no-foam soy milk caramel latte on the menu!
Rosie-Lee’s owner Abby is a woman without a plan… and her beloved little cafe is a business with a serious lack of customers. The Rosie Lee’s fry-up is legendary, but cooked breakfasts alone – however perfectly sizzled the bacon – aren’t going to pay the bills.
Fast approaching forty and fighting a serious case of empty nest syndrome, Abby realises it’s not just her menu that needs a makeover. And when Jack Chance, her The One That Got Away, saunters through the cafe doors and back into her life things definitely look set to change…
Abby has always believed a cup of strong builders tea makes everything better, but Jack’s reappearance is a complication even the trusty sausage sarnie can’t resolve.
Now over to Jane, who’s going to interview Jack,
Thanks for having us on your blog today Karen, I’m looking forward to interviewing the romantic hero of Secrets and Tea at Rosie Lee’s – Jack Chance.
What brings you back to London, Jack, and are you happy to be back?
My company is expanding and we’re opening a new office in London. I am very happy to be back – even though I’ve lived in the U.S. for a long time, London will always be my home.
What were your first thoughts when you saw Abby again after such a long time?
It’s been over twenty years since I last saw Abigail, but I knew it was her as soon as I saw her, and I couldn’t believe it. She was wearing the most amazing red dress and she looked beautiful. I noticed her before she even realised I was there, which I’m glad about. It gave me the chance to get my head straight – so I didn’t act like a burbling idiot when we finally got a chance to talk.
It sounds like your meeting had quite an impact on you?
It definitely did. I’ve never forgotten Abigail – how could I? She was my first kiss and my first love.
So how come it took you twenty years to come back to her?
After I left, we didn’t keep in touch – it was complicated. Then so much time passed that I assumed she would be with someone. Who wouldn’t want to be with a woman like Abigail? She’s amazing. I didn’t want to come back and risk making things difficult for her. I care about her too much to do anything that might hurt her.
I’m curious as to why you’re still single, Jack?
I work very hard, I’ve always put my business before anything else. I guess I never found anyone I wanted to spend time with; I’ve always preferred my job. That was all I really wanted until I came back to London and saw Abigail again.
How do you think Abigail has changed over the years?
Well, Abigail is a mother now, a fantastic one at that, and that experience has changed her. She’s so strong, she’s had to be after being a single parent for eighteen years, and that strength is just one of the things I love about her. I am in awe of her and what she’s achieved, in spite of everything she’s been through. I tell her this as often as I can, but I don’t think she believes me.
Final question – what’s the one thing you would like the readers to know about you?
Now that I’ve found Abigail again, I’m determined to be here for her forever. No matter what.
Here’s an excerpt from the book, where Jack tells Abby exactly that!
There was no denying that, sitting there with Jack, I felt more content than I had in weeks. But all the reasons I’d sent him away were still there, still squeezed in between us, no matter how closely we sat together on that back step. Nothing had really changed, had it? So, what was the point in letting myself get too comfortable?
‘Stop over thinking it,’ said Jack, like he’d read my mind.
‘I wasn’t. I was thinking I should probably go inside and help with the clearing up. I can’t leave it all to Liz and David.’ I made a move to stand but he took my hand.
‘Don’t. Just stay here with me for a minute.’
‘I like sitting here with you. Please?’
‘Being around you makes me happy.’
I sat back down. ‘You didn’t look very happy the last time I saw you.’
He looked down at his drink; the silence stretched between us until eventually he looked up at me.
‘I’m sorry Abigail. I shouldn’t have left like that. It was wrong of me to storm off like a bad-tempered teenager.’
I remembered the hurt in his eyes when I’d stopped him from kissing me in the kitchen that night and told him that nothing could happen between us. That memory was closely followed by another one – of how it felt to be kissed and wanted by him. I took another mouthful of wine to avoid having to speak.
‘The minute I left I wanted to come back, to apologise. I let you down Abigail and I’m so sorry for that. But I’m here now and I need you to know how I feel.’
‘Jack, please don’t … I can’t …’
‘Let me finish. I should have come back and told you all this weeks ago, but I didn’t know how to say it. Now I do.’
My heart was beating so fast I was sure he must be able to hear it. What the hell?
‘I have to have you in my life Abigail, for me it’s that simple. I need it like I need to breathe. And if being your friend is the only way that can happen then I’ll take it. I’ll take whatever you’re willing to offer, just please don’t send me away again. These past two weeks have been some of the worst of my life. To have you back and then have to face the prospect of losing you again was too much.’
Want to see if Jack and Abi get their ‘Happy Ever After’? You can buy the book here:
I’ve been writing for as long as I could string a sentence together and I always dreamed of becoming a published author, but it felt like an unachievable dream until I joined the RNA’s New Writer’s Scheme in January 2017. That was the thing that really made me think I could really do it. I’d written the beginning of the story that would grow into ‘Secrets and Tea at Rosie Lee’s’ as an entry for a competition on Good Morning Britain. It never got anywhere but I really thought the story had legs and could go somewhere so I carried on with it. After rewriting it based on my manuscript report from the RNA, I started submitting to publishers who didn’t require you to have an agent. I was over the moon when Aria Fiction offered me a 3- book contract in October 2017!! This first book is set in East London, where I grew up, and features characters that were inspired by some of the people I knew back then.
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Bring a little sunshine into your life with one of my sassy, feel good romances. From Amazon and other book stories. All books available in print too.