Cassie Rocca talks about her new Christmas novel.
1. Can you tell us a bit more about your novel, A New York Love Story?
A New York Love Story is a romantic Christmas fairy tale. It’s not just the love story between a man and a woman, but also for a city, New York City, in a time of the year that for the main character is a whole lifestyle: Christmas time. I wrote this story in a sad time of my life, when I just needed good, positive, light things. And so, I had my own happy ending through the novel’s one, managing to publish with a big publishing house. And I wish the same for everyone: if you keep dreaming, good things will eventually come to you.
2. Can you introduce us to the main character in the book, Clover?
Clover O’Brian is a simple girl, one of us. She comes from a difficult family. They don’t understand her and they always wished she was different. She has her dreams, like everyone, and works, supporting herself. She has a special gift: she is able to find the perfect gift for everyone, and this makes her the most popular personal shopper in New York City. Her strength is her spontaneity, and her optimism. She doesn’t give up and keeps hoping for a better future. And destiny decides to reward her right on Christmas, giving her the thing she wants the most: a love story with a man that loves her exactly the way she is.
3. Is the novel in any way based on some of your own experiences?
In every one of my characters there is something about me, about my past, my emotions. For example, Clover is a lot like me… even if I don’t live in New York City, unfortunately, I’m not a personal shopper and most of all I still haven’t found the love of my life! But I’m working on it…
4. What novel you’ve recently read yourself would you like to recommend to others?
I read a lot, and many different genres. At the moment I’m writing a new novel, so my reading is on hold. I’d like to suggests not just titles but authors, the ones I buy upon trust: Nora Roberts, because she’s one of the queens of romance, or Cecelia Ahern and Guillaume Musso: they not only write about love stories, but they always have a positive message for the reader, and I appreciate that in a book.
5. What do you like best about being a writer?
I’ve always read a lot, since I was a kid. Re-reading one of my stories and thinking “Wow, did I write that?” is the thing that amazes me the most. But now that thousand of people read my stories I love to know I give them emotions, I love to have a chance to see my characters through the eyes of my readers, receiving messages from people thanking me because I helped them making decisions without knowing it or overcoming sad moments. It’s an honor for me to be able to give so much doing so little.
6. What is next for you?
I’ll just keep writing romantic comedies, because they have always been my favourites. I’ll do it for everyone who wants to read them, and I hope to keep giving them a good time.
Giving a present is not always easy. Clover O’Brian knows that only too well: her job consists of helping people in the arduous task of choosing unusual gifts. Christmas is coming, New York is buzzing, and Clover, who has always loved the festive period, savours the atmosphere.
Cade Harrison already has everything in life. A Hollywood actor, he is handsome, rich, famous and popular. Success, however, has its downsides; having just emerged from a disastrous relationship with an actress, he feels a need to hide away in an area unfrequented by stars, in an apartment lent him by a friend, far from prying eyes – especially those of tabloid reporters. But as chance will have it, the apartment in question is right opposite the one occupied by Clover, who until now has seen Hollywood actors only on the big screen. Two quite different lives meet by chance, at the most exhilarating time of year…
Cassie Rocca is a writer of Sicilian origin who has lived in Genoa since the age of three. In everyday life she is a child-minder, a job which gives her plenty of ideas for her modern fairy tales.