This book means a great deal to me. It’s the longest I’ve written to date and a little more serious than the previous two Westerwald novels (though there are still the light-hearted moments you’ve come to expect from a Romy novel).
This book also allowed me to pay tribute to some of my favourite classic movies.
The opening scene (read an extract below) is based on a moment in Singin’ in the Rain in which silent movie star Gene Kelly escapes his rabid fans while his good friend (played by Donald O’Connor) looks on, laughing. He eventually jumps into the passing open-topped car of Debbie Reynolds who mistakes him for a gangster.
In To Catch a Star, the best friend is absent – though he makes a few appearances elsewhere in the book – but in many other ways the scene remains the same, with a contemporary twist.
Like Gene Kelly’s character in Singin’ in the Rain, my hero in To Catch a Star is a movie star who started his career as a stuntman. And like Kelly’s Don Lockwood, he’s a ladies’ man with an over-inflated ego who isn’t used to meeting a woman who doesn’t drop at his feet, a woman who questions his career and his life.
Another of the book’s more comic moments, which I call The Balcony Scene, was inspired by a scene from the original Pink Panther, featuring David Niven and a very young Robert Wagner. No spoiler clip this time - you’ll have to read the book to see what I mean.
And then there’s my heroine, who is modeled on Grace Kelly’s character in To Catch a Thief – want to guess how my book got its name?
I still love to watch those old movie classics. Aside from the fact that they’re a great source of story ideas, they’ve brought me many entertaining hours, cheered me up when I needed a mood lift, helped me escape from real life in the same way great books do. To Catch a Star is my little tribute to all those amazing film.
Do you have a favourite movie classic that means a lot to you?
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