- Today, Jera’s Jamboree has great pleasure in hosting author Daniela Sacerdoti.
In celebration of publication of debut novel Watch Over Me, Daniela is sharing with readers the inspiration behind her characters … also, her publishers Black and White Publishing are offering two lucky readers the chance to win a paperback copy!
First, I am going to share with you more information about Watch Over Me:
Paperback: 256 pages
- Publisher: Black & White Publishing (17 Nov 2011)
- Language English
- ISBN-10: 1845023668
- ISBN-13: 978-1845023669
Eilidh Lawson’s life has just been turned upside down. Her marriage is ending and she’s lost her much longed-for baby. Mentally and physically exhausted, she’s not sure what to do but feels oddly compelled to return to Glen Avich, a small village in the Scottish Highlands, where her family has lived for generations. Here, she meets her best friend from childhood, Jamie McAnena, who is raising his daughter alone. Following the death of his mother, Elizabeth, Jamie has resigned himself to being a family of two, closing himself off and devoting his life to his daughter, Maisie. What none of them can know is that it is Elizabeth who has called Eilidh back to Glen Avich. Though dead for three years, she has not been able to leave Jamie behind in his lost and lonely state. Now, she starts working behind the scenes for Jamie and Eilidh to get close again, but both are scared of repeating the past and Elizabeth’s influence can only reach so far. An ethereal tale narrated from several different perspectives, Watch Over Me is a beautifully written debut novel. It is a poignant yet subtle story about letting go and moving on – with a little bit of help from beyond the grave.
I asked Daniela ‘How did your characters grow and take on a life of their own?’
I suppose it’s quite a cliché to say that the inspirationfor Watch Over Me came from a dream, as it sounds very Stephenie Meyer! But inthis case, it’s true, at least for the character Elizabeth. It was a dream Ihad in extraordinary detail: I was kneeling on a wooden floor in a statelyhome, and from the window I could see green fields and a few trees. I waswearing a brown skirt, and those flesh-coloured tights that were fashionable inthe seventies, which made me feel I was sort of back in time. I knew, in the way you ‘know’ in dreams,that I was in the Highlands of Scotland, that there was an older couple in theroom, a lord and a lady, and that my name was Elizabeth. The snapshot finishedwith a little blond boy running in my arms, and me holding him tight. I woke upwith a sense of loss, and nostalgia, and profoundly touched. That’s when thecharacter of Elizabeth was born, and of course, her son, the little blond boy –grown up to become dark-haired Jamie. I’ve often wondered since then what thatdream meant – I know it was probably some reworking of a scene I’d seen, orsome story I’d heard – but it made me once again wonder if it actually was amemory of somebody else’s life drifting in my consciousness somehow, like amessage; or a memory of a past life of mine. I suppose I’ll never know, but Ican still see that dream so clearly, as if I’d had it yesterday.
As for Eilidh, well, Eilidh was born around a kernel ofme; and then she became herself, individual and very much her own person. Thekernel is my own search for a home, that just like Eilidh’s ended in Scotland. Hertwo themes – exile, and longing for a family, are certainly the main componentsof my own identity. Aside from this, though, Eilidh has a life of her own, anda history of her own: finding out all about her, her job, her best friends, hertastes in food, the way she has a little bit of a temper under that sweetexterior…was so easy, so natural. Like she was telling me. When I was writing the book, Eilidh was like a sisterto me, so present in my head and in my heart that when I finished the book Iwas quite bereaved, having to say goodbye.
And then, there’s Jamie. But how Jamie came to be, and whohe is, and what he means to me…it’s a secret. If you really, really want toknow, read the dedication – and then keep the secret for me.
Thank you Daniela. I’m intrigued and can’t wait to read Watch Over Me 🙂
You can read the first three chapters of Watch Over Me here.
Daniela’s publisher says ‘it’s a great Christmas read’ so if you’re looking for that Christmas gift, buy your copy now in plenty of time!
To enter the giveaway, follow the instructions below. Daniela will be choosing her two favourite answers. The giveaway is open to residents in Europe and will receive their copy via the publisher.