Today I am thrilled to share a guest post from one of my favorite authors Carla Caruso, in celebration of her latest novel Starcrossed. Check out the fabulous Q&A from last week if you missed it!
5 Novels with a Cosmic Twist!
by Carla Caruso
My mum was brought up a Roman Catholic, but she’s always had a fascination with New Agey gear – from numerology to Feng Shui – which she has passed on to me.
Astrology is a part of this fixation. Okay, so I probably read my daily star-signs more avidly in my youth, when I had boys on the brain and wanted to know if the ‘love’ planets were shining my way, but I still regularly read the horoscopes in the paper and always love checking out my monthly star-signs online. (Forecasters.co.nz is my fave for this!)
Which is why I’ve finally used this interest of mine to inspire a novel – Starcrossed, out with Harper Impulse digitally (http://www.harpercollins.com.au/9781460705629/star-crossed). It follows four girls who go on a cosmic retreat on rugged Kangaroo Island, where strange thing start to happen. Unbeknownst to them, their star-signs have something to do with this! (Oh, and there’s a hunky hero with a scorpion neck-tattoo in the mix, as well.) It’s chick-lit and romance, mashed up with a bit of suspense.
Finding other novels with a ‘cosmic’ theme required a bit of digging, but I’ve listed my top five below. Maybe you, dear reader, can think of some more?
1. The Summer Psychic by Jessica Adams. Dubbed “a funny, compulsive and wildly original novel about a journalist who interviews a handsome psychic who predicts that they will be married by the end of the year and proceeds to turn her life – and everything she believed – upside down.” (As well as an author, Jessica just happens to be a psychic astrologer.)
2. The Fortunes of Ruby White by Lia Weston. (This one pokes a bit of fun at the New Age world!) Ruby White has been pushed too far; she quits her job as a secretary to the worst of the Knobbes at Knobbe & Sons. With nothing else to fill her time, Ruby soon finds herself at a seminar for those who are Hyper-Audio-Aware, a condition she never knew existed, run by the Jaasmyn Empire, a company she’s never heard of. To Ruby’s surprise, she is offered a job…
3. The Luminaries by Eleanor Catton. All right, this book is a little hefty for me, but it’s worth a mention because it won a prestigious Man Booker Prize by a then 28-year-old (the youngest author to ever win such an award). Of the tome, NZ Herald says: “Set in 1866 gold-rush Hokitika … its structure and narrative is propelled by 12 men aligned to 12 signs of the zodiac. The 832-page murder-mystery has divided reviewers, electrifying many, baffling others.”
4. Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Stone by J.K. Rowling. I have to admit to having only seen the movie versions of the books (shame on me!), but I’ve heard Rowling’s series has a bit of an astro theme. For example, the Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry’s four houses correspond to the four elements (fire, earth, air, water) just like the signs of the zodiac. And Harry is the fire sign of Leo and in the Gryffindor House of fire. Astrology is also on the Hogwarts syllabus… and on it goes. Correct, Potter fans?
5. Ten Days in Tuscany (Men of the Zodiac # 4) by Annie Seaton. This is the fourth in a new series by Entangled Publishing, dubbed Men of the Zodiac. Annie had me at Tuscany, but here’s a bit of the blurb anyway: Gia Carelli waits tables in her small Tuscan village, dreaming of a life in which her overbearing family allows her to move to Florence to pursue art. Everyone expects her to marry a nice local boy and raise a horde of bambini, but when a gorgeous, wealthy stranger visits, Gia wonders if maybe her stars are about to change…
About the Author: Carla Caruso
Carla always wanted to be a novelist, annoying the kindergarten teachers by dictating long, detailed stories to them. It just took her a while to realise her childhood dream – journalism seemed a more practical course. Her media career has included stints as a newspaper and magazine journalist, government PR and fashion stylist. These days, she works as a freelance journalist and copywriter. She began seriously writing fiction three years ago when she went freelance full-time.
The romance genre appeals as she is a sucker for rom-coms (especially if Channing Tatum is in the mix) and likes to think her Italian ancestry means she lives with passion. Hobbies include watching trashy TV shows, fashion (her mum named her after Carla Zampatti!), astrology and running.
Starcrossed by Carla Caruso
Book Blurb: Is love really written in the stars?
Fledgling romance author Simona Gemella is hoping the rugged wilderness of South Australia’s Kangaroo Island will help reignite her creative spark after her husband walked out.
She’s joined her best friend, Nessie, on a health and wellness retreat at a mysterious old manor on the island, run by an astrology guru.
Though Simona’s sworn off men, she can’t help being distracted by a dangerously handsome man with a scorpion tattoo – Denham Cobalt – who’s also staying at the manor. Then strange things start to happen, including uncanny accidents and even a possible murder.
It all culminates at a masquerade party on the night of a total lunar eclipse. Will Simona survive – with her heart intact?