The Next Big Thing

Image courtesy of R Ardizzone

Last week my friend and colleague Christina Courtenay – author of wonderfully romantic novels set in locations as far apart as the Far East and Scotland – kindly ‘tagged’ me in her post about ‘The Next Big Thing’. It’s now my turn to answer ten questions about my forthcoming book, and to tag some other authors who will tell you about their new novels on their own blogs. So here are the Q&A’s:

What is the title of your next book? Up Close, and it’s out on the 7th of December.

Where did the idea come from for the book? It was a combination of visiting the North Norfolk coast, reading about soldiers returning from the Gulf, and imagining Shakespeare’s Hamlet and Ophelia in a slightly different set-up. From those very different strands, tossed together in my head, the idea began to take shape.

What genre does your book fall under? Romantic suspense.

What actors would you choose to play the part of your characters in a film version? Nice idea, but it’s probably not going to happen! However, if I had my way, I would dearly like to see Clive Owen and Romola Garai pair up, with Helen Mirren playing the mother. We can but dream!

What is the one sentence synopsis of your book? “Too close for comfort?” Meaning, when you allow yourself to become close to another person, who knows what you might discover about yourself?

Will your book be self-published or represented by an agency? It will be published by the independent publisher Choc Lit.

How long did it take you to write the first draft of the manuscript? I wrote the first draft a few years ago, then left it in a bottom drawer because it wasn’t quite right and I didn’t know what to do with it. Later, when I’d heard of Choc Lit, I rewrote the story, this time including a male viewpoint, which actually made it a better book. Problem solved!

What other books would you compare this story to within your genre? I was incredibly chuffed when it was hailed as “Nora Roberts territory” by The Bookseller! I hope they’re right…

Who or what inspired you to write this book? The sea which I both love and fear. It seemed natural for me to give the main character, Lia, the same anxieties.

What else about your book might pique the reader’s interest? The hero, Aidan, is absolutely gorgeous!

Now I’m going to tag the following authors:-

Monica Fairview, author of Regency novels, who is currently working on a time-slip adventure novel set during the Spanish Civil war. Her blog is at


Juliet Greenwood, who writes time-slip family drama sprinkled with a touch of ‘Downton Abbey’ and the novels of Kate Morton. See

About henriettegyland

USA Today bestselling author, published by One More Chapter Also, a translator, cat slave, guinea pig whisperer, knitter & upcycler, and hygge lover.
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5 Responses to The Next Big Thing

  1. nikkigoodman says:

    Great post Henri, can’t wait to read it.
    Nikki x

  2. Thanks for your kind words in the introduction 😀
    Having been privileged to read Up Close, I can thoroughly recommend it to anyone who likes romantic suspense, it’s brilliant!

  3. Gilli Allan says:

    Great stuff, Henriette. I am totally with you on the love and fear thing. It is very much my response to the sea. Sounds like a good read. I like a bit of suspense in with the romance!

  4. Congrats, Henriette…..look forward to reading this one…:0

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