Bookalicious Guest Blogger Tara Wagg had the opportunity to enjoy the novel Idol Hands and interview the author Cynthia Hill. You can find out Tara's take on Cynthia's character "Tara". Read on to see what I mean!
is the first novel by Cynthia Hill. As a teenager, Tara could have been the envy of every girl as the secret girlfriend of Aidan Forrest, teen idol and member of boy band Idol Hands. Now, Tara is a college drop out in a dead-end retail sales job, living in an apartment she cannot wait to get out of and married to a washed up high school athlete who spent their savings on a large screen TV dashing any hope of buying a house. Sleepless and completely disillusioned with her life, Tara is up late one night when she catches a clip of Aidan Forrest on a television show. Throwing caution to the wind, Tara decides to leave her life behind and find Aidan.
What ensues is a cross-country adventure with many stops along the way, a plethora of interesting characters and situations that makes the book absolutely impossible to put down. Tara shares her hunt for her true love through her diary entries, leading the reader through emotions, doubts and a twist that is never seen coming.
By Tara Wagg
Excerpt From Idol Hands
June 17, 2008 10:52am
I did go to sleep. I don’t even remember Steve leaving for work. It turns out that I do have to work, and I only have a few hours until I have to go, but now that I’m awake again, I’m just as confused as ever.
I couldn’t sleep… again. Steve had been in bed snoring away for hours and I ended up in the living room watching that stupid TV. I flipped channels for a while, and then I came across “Real Hollywood Story”. It was about Idol Hands.
I had to watch, I mean, how could I NOT watch? It was the weirdest thing – so surreal. My eyes were glued to the screen the whole time. It brought back so many memories. Things I haven’t thought of in YEARS.
So I’m watching, and I’m feeling all nostalgic, and a little sad, and then it just happens. I had to use the DVR to rewind because I couldn’t believe what I’d heard.
Aidan said he still loves me.
It was all so long ago. It feels like another lifetime. It can’t POSSIBLY have been me, can it? How does someone go from being the girlfriend of a member of one of the biggest boy bands ever, to living in a rat hole apartment with a husband so STUPID that he buys a TV instead of a house?
I must be delusional again. Maybe exhaustion is causing me to hallucinate? I know it’s not, though: I watched that same damned 30 seconds on the DVR about 50 times already. It really did happen, and he really did say it.
Memories are just… my whole mind is jumbled up right now.
Interview With Idol Hands Author Cynthia Hill
By Tara Wagg
How would you describe “Idol Hands” in one sentence?
That's hard to do: I have a hard time describing it at all! Idol Hands is the story of a woman trying to reclaim her life, and find her first love.
You provided a lot of information about being on the road with a ‘boy band’, where did you information and inspiration come from?
I'm obviously a long-term fan of a certain late 80s boy band, but since I've never actually spent any time on the road with them (darn it!) I had to use a combination of information from interviews that I've seen and read, stories from people who have been backstage, and a part of that kind of madness, and my own imagination. I think most former teen idols have the same sort of story: that kind of stifling "you're never alone but you're ALWAYS alone" kind of feeling.
Without giving anything away, the ending of Idol Hands was such a twist, did you know that was the way Tara was going to end her story? Or, did the ending surprise even you?
It started out as sort of a writing exercise for me, based on something that one of my high school teachers had said (many, MANY years ago). I can't say what that was, because it would give everything away, but I had always wanted the chance to play with that kind of a story. So yes, I knew right from the start that was how it was going to end. What HAS been a surprise to me has been the readers' reactions: I love getting messages from people after they've finished reading the book!
As a mother of four children, when do you find time and inspiration to write?
The inspiration isn't hard to find: I'm an observer, and I've constantly got some idea in my head that I'd like to play with. It's the motivation and time that can be hard to come by. "Idol Hands" was actually three years in the making, because I started it as part of the National Novel Writing Month competition, or "NaNoWriMo" as it's otherwise known. The challenge is to write 50,000 words in a month. I had the basic framework of the story, and a first draft, after that was over in November of 2008. I was already pregnant with my fourth child by then, and writing dropped off my radar for quite a while after that. When I finally picked it back up and finished the final draft, it was the summer of 2011. I'm hoping that future books won't take quite so long, though!
I read that you are now writing “What Lies Behind”. Can you tell us a little about the story?
I definitely don't want to get pegged as "that boy band writer." I'm very proud of Idol Hands, but it's definitely not fan fic, so I'm making sure that my next few books have nothing to do with the entertainment industry! As well, the new book is still dramatic, but not nearly as dark as Idol Hands. "What Lies Behind" is about an adult granddaughter (Lisa), trying to understand how her grandmother (Lillian) - now living in the final stages of Altzheimer's - became the hard woman that Lisa knew as a child. Lillian tells her story from the past, and Lisa tells hers from the present.
ABOUT THE AUTHOR
To read more from Idol Hands check out this excerpt
. Idol Hands is available in paperback and in many ebook formats. Check out where you can get your hands on Idol Hands by clicking here
ABOUT THE GUEST BLOGGER
Bookalicious Guest Blogger Tara Wagg is the mom of two wonderful children, Special Education teacher, voracious reader and friend. Check out Tara's book blog Boomda’s Little Corner
and follow her on Twitter: @boomda181
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