I found a wonderful, romantic, sweet novel by an amazing author that I would like to share– The Melody in Our Hearts by Roberta Capizzi. Let me share my review of the novel and an interview with Roberta.
Doctor Valerie Fogarty studied hard to become a competent surgeon, but losing a patient during an operation made her throw everything out the window and now she can’t set foot into an operating room anymore. Until her best friend Ryan is brought into the ER on a stretcher, fighting for his life after a terrible car accident and she’s the only one who can save him. Meeting him as a teenager in their hometown in Ireland was the turning point in her life and she knows she will never be able to live without him. Will her determination and skills be enough to save Ryan’s life? Jazz Star Ryan Wyler grew up in Dublin, with a dream of becoming a professional pianist and continuing the legacy of his musical hero, Frank Sinatra. When opportunity knocks and he’s offered the chance to pursue a real music career, he’s happy to accept it, unaware that what he’s actually accepting is a package deal he will have no control over. But when success keeps him away from Valerie, his best friend since adolescence, Ryan will have to question his choices. A story about the value of true friendship, the power of dreams, and the unpredictability of love.
I absolutely loved this novel! The Melody in Our Hearts by Roberta Capizzi is truly amazing. It is a sweet but dramatic love story that pulls the reader in. The story began with a dramatic scene that briefly introduced the two main characters, Valerie and Ryan, which left you hanging and kept you reading until the end. I loved the way the story began later in their lives and then caught you up. Valerie and Ryan are such wonderful characters that make you want them to be together; they were sweet and endearing toward one another from the first day they met. Roberta did a wonderful job of letting the reader really know and understand the characters. Their story was filled with a sweet love that is so rare. This novel was touching and pure of heart. Roberta did an outstanding job. I look forward to reading future work by Roberta Capizzi.
About Roberta Capizzi
An avid reader since her childhood years and being an only child, Roberta always enjoyed the company of her fictional friends from the children’s books she loved reading, while she dreamed of writing her own stories one day.
It was when she discovered novels by authors Rosamunde Pilcher and Maeve Binchy in her teenage years that she realized it was time she put down in words the stories she had kept well hidden in her mind until then.
What started as a hobby, soon turned into a real passion and a way of life, until she could no longer keep the stories to herself, and decided to get over her fears and share them with the world.
Roberta lives in Italy, but her dream is to move out of her country and live either in a thatched cottage in the Irish countryside or in a country house with a swing on the back porch, somewhere in the United States, where she would love to spend her days writing novels as a full-time job, and maybe one day even get as far as writing a screenplay for a movie.
She is already working on a second novel, while jotting down ideas for more as they pop into her mind.
I would like to welcome Roberta Capizzi and thank her for taking the time to give me this interview. We will be finding out about her and her novel The Melody in Our Hearts.
Before we begin the interview, Roberta can you tell us a little about yourself and your novel?
About myself. Hhmm… tough question. Well, I like to think of myself as a bookworm, a daydreamer and a hopeless romantic. Growing up watching Disney movies and reading books by Rosamunde Pilcher didn’t help keep my feet on the ground. So you’ll always find me fantasizing about a new scene in my next novel, or looking for ideas for stories in my every day life. The word “relax” is not in my dictionary: my mind works overtime, and if I’m not writing, I’m reading or dedicating a little time to one of my other hobbies.
As for my novel, well, it’s set partly in Ireland (I’m a real Ireland-holic, just so you know) and partly in Boston, and it spans approximately 17 years of the two main characters’ lives. It’s a romance, but there’s a strong friendship theme throughout the story; half of it is the story of how the two main characters met, and how they friendship grew stronger through the years. I know it might sound a little too much back story, but their friendship is a very important theme in the story and I felt it was needed to get the reader to relate to the characters and understand how they felt for each other. It opens with a dramatic scene, set in the ER of the hospital where Valerie, the heroine, works. She studied to become a surgeon, but after losing a patient on the operating table, she’s given up on the surgical career. When a man is taken into the ER on a stretcher fighting for life, Valerie is the only surgeon on shift, but she’s too scared to operate on him; until she sees that the man on the stretcher is Ryan, her best friend, and she’s faced with the hardest choice of her life: either she gets over her fears and operates on him, or she will lose him forever. It will take the reader a few chapters to understand if Ryan will live or will die, because from this point, the reader will get to know the story of their past – so I won’t say it here! 🙂
Now on to the interview.
- When did you start writing?
I’ve always had a passion for writing; writing essays was my favorite moment at school, and I’ve always kept a diary, too. I started writing fan fiction when I was a teenager, but without any intentions of publishing anything. It was just for fun. Then a few years later I decided I’d challenge myself and I’d try to write something serious, something that I might want other people to read. I started with short stories and novellas and approximately ten years ago I wrote my first novel, which I never published. After that, I kept writing, to improve my style and make my novels as good as they could be.
- What/who inspired you to write?
When reality started to become too boring, and things didn’t go the way I wanted, I decided to create my own reality and a world where things would go just the way I wanted them to. I know this sounds a bit crazy, and at the time I thought I was starting to lose my marbles, but then I realized that this is what writers do: they create fictional worlds and characters, and that was when I understood I wanted to be a real writer. I guess I would sound less crazy if I said I was a writer!
- Who has been the most supportive?
Honestly? I have. Let me explain: I’ve never really shared my little “secret” with anyone. I’ve always been a shy girl, ever since I was a child, and I always thought my stories were something personal, something that would make people judge me. So I never really told anyone that I’d been writing for most of my life, not until I held the proof copy of my book in my hands, last December, and once I hit “publish” I told a very few people in my family about it. They’ve all been nice to me, and if they thought I’m crazy or weird, they didn’t let it show; but they can’t be supportive with my novel, because it’s in English and they don’t speak the language, so I guess I can’t count on their opinion.
- What writers inspired you and what about their work do you most like?
Rosamunde Pilcher, Maeve Binchy and Nicholas Sparks. I love the way Rosamunde Pilcher describes the places, and creates beautiful stories the readers can feel part of; I love the way Maeve Binchy describes the characters and the emotions, making them feel real; I love the beautiful love stories Nicholas Sparks creates.
- What is your favorite piece of writing by them?
I like all of their books, for one reason or another. I love the first novel I read by Rosamunde Pilcher, The carousel, but I also love Winter Solstice. I love Evening Class and Scarlet Feather by Maeve Binchy. I love The last song and Safe Haven by Nicholas Sparks. But like I said, it’s hard for me to pick a favorite one.
- Have you collaborated or plan to collaborate in the future?
I’ve never thought of that. I guess it would be nice, if I found someone who writes a different genre, so we could create a new genre! It would be fun. Or maybe it would be fun to write a story from two different characters’ point of view, each writer being one of the two characters, in a sort of theatrical way. I actually did that once, with a friend of mine: we wrote a fan fiction together. I was living in Dublin at the time, and she was in Italy, so I would write a bit and then email it to her, she would add a part and send it back to me – it was fun!
- What future projects do you have in store?
Well, I have lots. I’ve been working on three different stories, writing down bits and pieces every time I have new ideas for scenes. I’m hoping to finish a project I’m working on by the end of the year.
- Are you currently working on a project?
Yes, I am. It’s a novel I’d sort of written a few years ago, in my language, but I guess at the time it was only a first draft. Now I’ve decided to edit it, translate some bits into English, rewrite some parts and add new ones, as well as change the point of view.
- What is your favorite poem from your own work and why?
There are a couple of parts, but if I quoted them I would give away the ending… so I guess I’ll quote this part:
“They say you never forget the first kiss, so I want it to be with you. I want to remember you forever, just the way you are now. When we’re apart, we’ll grow, we’ll change, and maybe, when we meet again, we won’t recognize each other anymore. I want you to know that you’ve been my best friend ever, Valerie, and that I’ll never forget the years we’ve spent together.”
For the lighter questions
- Do have any writing quirks?
I can’t follow a plot. I try, I really do, but then I end up writing inconsequential scenes as they pop into my mind, and then I put them all together like a jigsaw puzzle.
- Do you snack while you write?
I try not to; but I drink a lot – water (just to clarify). Besides, when I’m concentrating on a new scene, I barely notice time passing so I can say writing is good if you’re thinking of starting a diet!
- Do have a special place that you prefer to write?
Anywhere. I usually write in my room, but I keep a notepad on my bedside table, in case I wake up with new ideas in my mind, and also another one in my bag, so I can take notes wherever I am. And I also write down notes while I’m in my office at times – but don’t tell my boss! 🙂
- Do have certain amount of time that you have set aside to write each day?
I’d love to, but unfortunately I can’t. I work full-time and spend eight long hours in front of a computer screen, so sometimes when I come home I’m too tired to sit down and write. I try to set aside as much time as possible over the weekend. I guess I would need days to last 48 hours. Or become a best-selling author and write full-time. Well, like I always say: dreams are free of charge!
- Do you listen to music when you write? If so what type of music (genre and/or songs)?
Not all the time, but sometimes I do. For my debut novel, The melody in our hearts, I listened to Frank Sinatra and Michael Bublé (of whom I’m a big fan), and I find piano music very relaxing. But sometimes I also listen to rock music, or Irish music. It really depends on the mood I’m in, and the story I’m writing. I love music.
- Anything other interesting information that you would like to add.
Well, I’m organizing a book tour to promote my debut novel, so if you’re interested, stop by my blog in the second week of March and check out the tour schedule. There’s a giveaway too!
And obviously I’d like to thank you for hosting me and thank everyone who’ll read my novel and help me make my life-long dream come true. Please leave an honest review – either good or bad, as long as it’s honest and has constructive criticism. I really look forward to readers’ feedback!
Good luck on your book tour. I will be following. And you are so welcome; I really enjoyed the novel and getting to know you. I appreciate you taking time from your busy schedule to answer the interview questions. I look forward to future work. Keep us posted 🙂
Thanks, Ronda 🙂
Contact Roberta and find her work at the following links:
Roberta Capizzi’s contact links:
Goodreads Roberta Capizzi (author profile)
Amazon (all marketplaces but the link is for Amazon.com) http://www.amazon.com/dp/1481208454
Kindle (all marketplaces but the link is for Amazon.com) http://www.amazon.com/dp/B00AVIZ6PK