Sunday, 18 March 2018

The Drought by Steven Scaffardi book review (taken from Bookaholic Confessions)

This book review was originally posted on Bookaholic Confessions on Friday, April 29, 2016 as part of the #LadLitBlogTour

4 Stars
When Dan Hilles breaks up with his long-term girlfriend something very odd seems to happen to him. He suddenly becomes tongue-tied around the opposite sex and appears unable to even strike up a (normal) conversation with a girl, let alone ask one out on a date… This results in Dan finding himself in what he refers to as a ‘Drought’. The longer the Drought goes on, the harder Dan tries to find himself a date, leading to some very awkward, unusual and down-right hilarious consequences. Why has it suddenly become so impossible for Dan to land himself a date? After all, he’s a ‘seven-out-of-ten’ kinda’ guy and his bunch of quirky yet loveable friends seem to have no trouble attracting the ladies. Will ‘The Drought’ ever end or is Dan destined to stay date-less for ever (gulp)?

‘Lad-Lit’ is a genre that I have grown to love over recent years. It seems to be something which is becoming more and more prominent and its unique-selling-point seems to be that it’s one of those rare types of novel which appeal to both men and women. I would class ‘lad-lit’ as Mike Dunn, Nick Spalding, Jon Rance (a selection of authors who I absolutely love!)…And I can now firmly add Steven Scaffardi to that list because if lad-lit is your thing then The Drought is a must-read. I think the main reason novels such as The Drought appeal to both male and female readers is because of two reasons. Firstly, for male readers, they will undoubtedly be able to relate to this story. It could be written about them and their group of friends. It’s funny, realistic and has a narrator talks total sense (to them at least…!) and is also incredibly likeable. From the female perspective, this novel is almost like an insight into the workings of the male mind. It’s amazing to read about the thoughts and ideas that run through Dan’s head (and it’s also extremely funny at times…And kind of scary, actually.)

Bearing in mind that this is a novel based around the lives of a group of four young men, there is the usual selection of banter, boobs and bottoms. Although I think you’d assume that this might be the case from the get-go so don’t be outraged if it’s not your cup of tea.

As a female reader I completely warmed to Dan. Ok, there might have been times when he did/said/believed the silliest of things but that’s all part of his charm. His heart is in the right place and I was totally on his side throughout. It was brilliant when he would do something seemingly innocent only for it to totally backfire on him. Your heart will go out to him whilst you’re quietly chuckling to yourself. Admittedly it’s usually his friends who get him into these cringe-worthy situations and for this reason they are a cracking set of characters. Their friendship group is both hilarious yet realistic and they certainly made me chortle when they got together. My favourite moments include their outing to Brighton (exotic dancers, anyone!?) and when Rob, Ollie and Jack individually coach Dan to get him ‘back in the game’; this involves overhauling his style, fitness levels and teaching him other, erm, things of vital importance. I liked Rob the best (You’ve got to love a guy who knows his fashion, am I right?) I also really liked the relationship between Dan and his work colleague, Kelly. They have great chemistry and I am SO pinching their game of ‘Office Dare’!

Lots of books are described as being ‘laugh-out-loud’ funny, but The Drought genuinely will have you sniggering. In fact, more than sniggering…Try a great, big, good old belly laugh. I love books like this – books that can completely take my mind off everything else and make me smile. This novel really was a brilliantly funny, well constructed, light, fun-filled read.

There are so many stories centred around dating from the female-perspective that it made a refreshing change to read a novel from a male point of view. Not necessarily one for the faint hearted, but if you’re a fan of humour and cheekiness then you’ll love Dan’s misadventures.

I personally am really looking forward to the follow-up, The Flood. I miss blundering-yet-loveable Dan and his coin-purse…

Steven Scaffardi Author Interview (taken from Bookaholic Confessions)

The Flood by Steven Scaffardi
This interview was originbally posted on Bookaholic Confessions on Friday, April 29, 2016 as part of the #LadLitBlogTour

Hi Steven, welcome to Bookaholic Confessions! Thank you so much for participating in this interview. Would you like to start by introducing yourself…?
Hi Holly, thanks for having me! Well as you know my name is Steven and I am the author of The Drought and The Flood; two comedy books about relationships from a man’s point of view, and both part of the Sex, Love & Dating Disasters series.

Can you tell us a bit about your debut novel The Drought (Sex, Love and Dating Disasters)?
I sure can! The Drought is the laugh-out-loud tale of one man’s quest to overcome the throes of a sexual drought. After the stormy break-up with his girlfriend of three years, Dan Hilles is faced with the daunting task of throwing himself back into the life of a single man. With the help of his three best pals, Dan is desperate and determined to get his leg-over with hilarious consequences!

…And also about your follow-up to The Drought, The Flood (released April 2016)?
The Flood picks up where The Drought left off, although it’s written in a way that you don’t have to have read the first book to pick up the second. This time round Dan makes the mistake of making a bet with his best friends that he can juggle more than one girl at the same time, and a series of comical situations ensue as Dan buckles under the pressure of dating his ex-girlfriend, a stalker, the office ice queen, and the one that got away. It is available now to pre-order for just 99p ( It will be released as an eBook on April 30 and the paperback will be available on May 19.

I am really looking forward to reading both books; they sound brilliant! I have to ask – are there elements of yourself in your lead character Dan Hilles or is he entirely fictional?
Unfortunately yes! The Drought is loosely based on a period in my life in my early 20s. I had just come out of a long-term relationship and had basically forgotten how to talk to girls and struggled getting myself into the dating game! Both books take stories from personal experiences or those of friends, and I sprinkle a large dose of exaggeration on top for comedy effect. It’s funny watching my wife read the books and then turn to me and say: “Please tell me this bit didn’t happen to you!”

Chick Lit Plus described your debut novel as ‘Chick Lit for Men’ I think chick lit novels written from a male perspective are such a great idea, but what’s it like writing for a genre that is dominated by female authors?
It’s hard in that you are going against the norm. Chick lit is normally written from the female point of view so (most of) the readers can relate. Plus they all tend to have a HEA ending. But lad lit is more like the frowned upon little brother of its more successful chick lit sibling. I think the biggest problem is that most readers are simply not familiar with lad lit or it has a bit of a stigma attached to it. But I’ve had lots of readers – male and female – read my books who have never picked up a lad lit novel before and told me how much they enjoyed it. As the series name suggests, it’s about the fun side of dating that doesn’t always go right, yet most people will admit they are the stories they remember the most.

The Drought (Sex, Love & Dating Disasters, #1)As well as being a writer you are also a stand-up comedian. Is it a profession that is as terrifying as you might imagine?
I haven’t actually done any stand-up comedy since 2012 – the day job took over I’m afraid, but when I used to do stand-up I can honestly say it was the best buzz I’ve ever had. Yes, the first time it was terrifying but once you start to find your rhythm and have a few jokes in your back pocket that will guarantee an odd laugh or two, it becomes less daunting. The nerves are always still there (the prospect of dying on stage is never far from your mind) but it becomes like a drug. The better you get at it, the more you look forward to getting up on stage. I miss it, but I had to find a way of paying the bills and unfortunately I wasn’t that funny so I had to stick with the 9-to-5.

Have you always wanted to be a writer?
I have always enjoyed being a storyteller and like most people I always thought I had a book in me, but it wasn’t until I was around 24 or 25 that I thought about it seriously. I studied journalism at university, wrote for a few magazines before becoming sports editor for a local paper. I quit journalism when I was around 27 because the money wasn’t great, but that love of writing and storytelling never went away.

What’s the best thing about writing comedies?
I think it’s the same thing as being a stand-up comedian – it’s being able to make people laugh. Seeing somebody laugh out loud because something you have said or written is hugely satisfying. I think it’s an incredibly difficult art that probably doesn’t get the credit it deserves. I have huge respect for stand-up comedians who go on stage and make people laugh for an hour. The longest set I ever did was 15 minutes and trying to come up with enough material to last 15 minutes was challenging enough let alone a whole hour. It is the same with writing a comedy novel. Writing 300+ pages of funny situations has its challenges, but so far, so good.

Who are your favourite authors and which type of books do you enjoy reading?
I like anything from my fellow lad lit authors to thriller and crime novels. My favourite authors at the moment are Danny Wallace, Jeff Abbott and Ben Mezrich, but my favourite book in recent times is the Bourbon Kid series. I can’t tell you the authors name because he is anonymous, but his novels are just brilliant. Imagine Quentin Tarantino in a supernatural world full of wonderful movie clich├ęs. They are such good fun to read.

And finally – can you tell us a bit about what you’re up to at the moment?
I have only recently finished writing The Flood so I am busy trying to promote that at the moment, but I am already work on the framework for my third book. This is a bit of an exclusive for you as I haven’t told anyone else this yet. At the moment the working title is called The Pact and it is the third book in the Sex, Love & Dating Disasters series. This time round, Dan and his pals travel to Latvia and get themselves into all sorts of trouble with a bunch of gangsters, drag queens, pimps, cops and lots more. It’s a little bit different to the first two books, but I love writing about these characters so much that I’m hoping other people and fans of the series will like it too.

Saturday, 17 March 2018

The 10 Lad Lit Books Every Chick Lit Fan Should Read

Lad Lit, Chick Lit,  High Fidelity, Nick Hornby, Man and Boy, Tony Parsons, My Legendary Girlfriend, Mike Gayle, The Ex-Boyfriend’s Handbook, Matt Dunn, Love… From Both Sides, Nick Spalding, Charlotte Street, Danny Wallace, This Thirtysomething Life, Jon Rance, This is Where I Leave You, Jonathan Tropper, Starter for Ten, David Nicholls, The Drought, Steven Scaffardi,
This guest post was orioginally posted on For The Love of Chick Lit on Wednesday, May 4, 2016 as part of the #LadLitBlogTour

From the moment I published my debut novel, The Drought, five years ago I have been on a mission to fly the flag for lit. For me, in terms of contemporary fiction, lad lit is up there with the very best, yet it doesn’t necessarily get the recognition it deserves.

Lad lit is best known as the male equivalent of chick-lit, primarily written by men exploring relationships, emotions and day-to-day life experiences from the perspective of a male protagonist. Often told with humour, charm and wit, lad lit leaves many readers laughing out loud at the scenarios men get into.

Since 2011, I have spoken to and engaged with a number of people – authors, bloggers and readers – who were already fans of lad lit or were new to the genre but fell in love instantly, and a lot of them were both women and chick lit fans.

This list is created from those numerous conversations, ratings on sites such as Amazon and Goodreads, and reviews on book blogger sites. I hope you enjoy and maybe discover a new love for lad lit…

High Fidelity by Nick Hornby
In boxing terms, there are two major heavyweights in this genre. One is Nick Hornby and the other is Tony Parsons, and for me Hornby just edges it by split decision. High Fidelity is probably his most well-known work. It explores the world of break-ups, make-ups and what it is to be in love.

Man and Boy by Tony Parsons
It is rumoured Parsons wrote this tale of a man who has the perfect life and throws it all away, based on his own personal experience. The British author pens a wonderfully crafted story about how one bad choice can flip your whole life upside down.

My Legendary Girlfriend by Mike Gayle
Mike Gayle’s books are the perfect example why lad lit is often referred to as ‘chick lit for men’. Over the past two decades, arguably no other author in the genre has been as consistent as Gayle at producing hit after hit. My Legendary Girlfriend was his debut novel and still stands the test of time.

The Ex-Boyfriend’s Handbook by Matt Dunn
The Ed and Dan trilogy (The Ex-Boyfriends Handbook/Ex-Girlfriends United/Accidental Proposal) is to lad lit what Back to the Future is to movies – a bloody good threesome! Dunn admits that Dan is probably his most popular character, and it’s easy to see why as he attempts to help his friend Ed get back on track after being unceremoniously dumped by his girlfriend for letting himself go a little bit!

Love… From Both Sides by Nick Spalding
Anything Matt Dunn can do, Nick Spalding can do one more! His Love… series has now spanned four novels. Love… From Both Sides used the clever concept of switching between the male and female lead characters every other chapter so the reader go both sides of the story (hence the name).

Charlotte Street by Danny Wallace
‘Danny Wallace is a man, but he is still learning some of life’s hardest lessons.’ That’s how Danny is described in his award-winning Shortlist magazine column, and that same wit and humour comes through in his first foray into fiction with this brilliantly clever story about a man trying to track down a woman by using the pictures he has developed from the disposable camera she left behind.

This Thirtysomething Life by Jon Rance
Similar to Nick Spalding, Jon Rance is another lad lit author who made the successful transition from self-published author to the big time following the huge success of the Amazon best-seller This Thirtysomething Life. This book beautifully captures the insecurities of men who are afraid to grow up.

This is Where I Leave You by Jonathan Tropper
Another lad lit success that was transformed to the big screen (High Fidelity being the other), This is Where I Leave You is the hilarious and heartbreaking story of Judd Foxman who is facing divorce and unemployment while coming to terms with the death of his father. Written by diversely talented Jonathan Tropper, the man behind HBO crime thriller, Banshee.

Starter for Ten by David Nicholls
Most chick lit fans will probably know David Nicholls for One Day, but it is his debut novel Starter for Ten is probably more popular in lad lit circles. The story of Brain Jackson trying to win the affections of his university quiz teammate is nostalgic, funny and heart-warming.

The Drought by Steven Scaffardi
I know what you’re thinking – I’ve written this list and added my own book! But don’t take my word for it – here is what Chick Lit Plus had to say about The Drought: “Being a female, I sometimes have difficulty relating to the main characters, but not with this one. Steven Scaffardi’s first novel is absolutely hilarious and will leave every reader, male or female, laughing out loud.”

The Flood by Steven Scaffardi book review (taken from My Book File)

The Flood by Steven Scaffardi book review
This book review was originally posted on My Book File on Sunday, March 6, 2016

4/5 Stars
Dan Hilles is ready to spice up his love life after eight months of drought. After spending the afternoon in the pub with his three best friends, he makes a bet. He has to date four women simultaneously in eight weeks, without them finding out about each other, just to prove a point. Dan is more than ready for the Flood to come his way. What could possibly go wrong?

I received a free copy from the author in exchange for an honest review.

“The text alert pierced my ear drums like someone has just plunged a needle into the side of my head. Blinking hard, my eyes momentarily struggled to recognise my own bedroom.”

Meet Dan Hilles. A great guy living in London, a nice guy… with a hangover and no idea what has happened, only to discover that during the night he somehow ended up in the same bed with two of his friends. From that point onwards it seems like the unimaginable happens to Dan. He gets his very own stalker, his new roommate is somewhat mental, he gets another chance with the girl who’s got away, he gets a chance to make the ultimate man-dream come true and he can make some money by winning a bet. But is anything ever easy when a woman is involved? And Dan has not just one but four women to worry about at the same time, because that is part of the bet. Will he pull it off or will he fall into a death-trap?

I confess that I was nearly dying of laughter most of the time while reading this book. First of all I think it’s great that this book gives mostly a man’s perspective of things but also a woman’s perspective on some occasions. Secondly I loved the use of language in this book. I can imagine that some people might find it a little to direct sometimes but I had no problem with that whatsoever and I loved the way Scaffardi put thing down in such a matter-of-fact-way that even the most bizarre events seem completely logical. Some of the stuff that happens to Dan seems so surreal but at the same time he and all that he goes through are so relatable. I mean let’s be honest we all have, or some of us are in fact, that somewhat unlucky friend. Here’s a small example of what I mean with the above:

“I carefully tried to navigate the phone out of my pocket without inappropriately touching any of the people who were cramped around me, but of course all I succeeded in doing was brushing my hand down the back of the bald guy in a completely unintentionally seductive way.”

This small passage comes from a scene where Dan is train. There are loads of people there and I guess that most of us have been in this situation once or twice (or maybe more often). It’s so relatable, I loved it, I really did. There are so many of these small things in life that have been put in this book, it’s just a great touch to the whole. Then there are the characters. The interaction between the characters are just great and the situations they get themselves into… well what can I say it’s just hilarious. What I liked about most characters is that they were well formed, they were not just portraying one sort emotion or any one-dimensional trait but they changed during the book. The minor characters are not just there either! Some of them are able to make a specific scene, like the bald guy in the train.

So in short:
I think this was great and I had fun reading it. Dan is a nice protagonist, the use of language suits the story and the characters will take you from one crazy situation into another. Overall I think it was just a great romance/comedy/chicklit kind of novel and I’m really looking forward to the next one, though I think that may take a while :’)

The Drought by Steven Scaffardi book review (taken from My Book File)

This book review was originally posted on My Book File on March 14, 2016. 

4/5 Stars 
Dan Hilles is just a normal guy with a job, a small group of friends and a long-term girlfriend, but not for long. Things start to change for Dan when he breaks-up with his girlfriend Stacey and he finds himself single again for the first time in three years. Unfortunately for him things don’t change in his favour and he enters a period of drought. With some near death experiences, more than a couple of awkward dates and some really embarrassing situations, things are getting real complicated. But Dan has a goal and he will not stop until he ends the drought.

I received a free copy from the author in exchange for an honest review.

“We sang it loud. We sang it proud. We sang it with passion. We sang it completely tone deaf. But it didn’t matter. It was the perfect end to the evening.”

Dan has been with Stacey for three years now but she has changed a lot since he met her at university. It all goes wrong at new years even when they get into another fight and Dan decides to spend the night with his friends instead of with her. After the nearly fifty messages she left him that night alone, he decides to put an end to it. But things don’t really go as planned and instead of breaking up kind of ‘peacefully’ he gets kicked out of the house by Stacey best friend Sophie who wants to kill him with a baseball bat. From that point on things change, but not for the better. Time and again Dan gets himself into the must stupid and surreal situations, even his friends are unable to help him break the drought and as it goes on Dan is getting more desperate. Rob, Ollie and Jack try to help him as best as they can but even their knowledge combined can’t save Dan from making a complete fool of himself. He even manages to get on the television twice! (not under the best circumstances but heej there is no such thing as bad publicity right?)

So yes I did read the sequel first but that doesn’t matter because this book is just as awesome, funny and amusing ^_^ Why you ask? Well here is why:

This book is everything I hoped it would be. There are the familiar yet unimaginable situations he is able to get into. He does it all on his own and I have to say that is very impressive. I’ve got more than one favourite scene is this book but I think that this one is the one I loved the most:

“‘I bumped into Simon Peterson yesterday.’ Rob said. ‘He lives on Mantilla Road.’
‘So what?’ I sneered.
‘He happened to mention that he saw you on his road on Wednesday night,’ Rob announced. ‘He was working on his car. He would have said hello, but you sprinted past him at a ferocious pace with a dog chasing you.’
‘Was it a poodle?’ Ollie questioned.
‘No it wasn’t a poodle,’ I said. ‘It was a big horrible, snarling beast.’
‘Simon said it was a sausage dog.’ Rob said and they all started laughing again.

This is a scene where Dan is having a drink with his friends and yes they’re making fun of him again. Now what happened before this is quite hilarious because it has to do with a date that would have stopped Dan’s drought. Dan got a second chance with Grace and just as they were going to take it one step further, he discovers that he doesn’t have any condoms with him. Getting dressed to get some at a store nearby, he runs out of Grace’s house but by the time he has to get back he finds out that he has no idea how to get back at all. That is when, after walking some time, he encounters a big horrible snarling beast… that turned out to be a sausage dog.

This book was so much fun to read and even though I read the second book first it didn’t affect me at all because everything that happened was just as unexpected. The amazing characters combined with the easy use of language, the everyday scenes and hilarious situations made for a great book. Again this book brings the whole dating-scenario from a totally different perspective. Not from the female point of view but from a man’s and that makes it all the more fun to read. It is that I am a woman myself but by reading this I understand that most man don’t understand women at all, sometimes even I don’t understand women (or myself for that matter) at all. Some of the language and scenes might be a little too harsh or descriptive for some people but that just made it better in my opinion.

Overall I think the book was great and it was so much fun to read. I would recommend this book to everyone who loves romance/comedy/chicklit kind of novels. I give this book four stars because me really likey.

Friday, 16 March 2018

Steven Scaffardi Author Interview (taken from My Book File)

The Drought by Steven Scaffardi
This interview was originally posted on My Book File on Wednesday, April 20, 2016 as part of the #LadLitBlogTour

Hi Steven, thank you for joining me today as part of The Lad Lit Blog Tour. Before asking you questions about the lad lit genre and your series, however, I want to ask you something else. After discovering that you studied journalism, I wondered… what did you do after your studies? And most importantly: why did you want to become an author?

Hi Cindy, thank you for having me! After finishing university I freelanced for a while at lads mags and sports magazines. Eventually I ended up working as the sports editor for a local newspaper and did that for about three years. It was great fun but as most journalists will tell you, the money is not great! Eventually I changed career paths, but I still work in a similar industry. I had always enjoyed writing stories from a young age, but I’d never really thought about becoming an author until a few years ago. I was like a lot of people and always thought I had a good book in me, and eventually it came out!

I must admit that I am guilty of not knowing about ladlit before I started to read your series of Sex, Love & Dating Disasters. I have read some novels by Mike Gayle, but I never actually gave the genre much thought (except for the fact that is looked like chicklit but it wasn’t quite the same). Can you tell me the full and honest truth about what the genre ladlit is actually all about?

Not many people have really heard of lad lit, which is why I thought this blog tour would be a great idea! Like you, lots of people have probably read books by what I’d consider to be lad lit authors, but because the genre doesn’t really get a lot of press, you don’t realise it! Lad lit is basically the male equivalent of chick lit, often called chick lit for men. Lad lit will feature a male protagonist or a group of guys, and will often explore themes such as relationships, dating, love, but all told from the male perspective. I often use the analogy that if book genres were diets then lad lit would be the ‘before’ picture and chick lit would be the ‘after’ image! As most women know, men are pretty hopeless at the best of times when it comes to romance even though we think we know it all, so lad lit opens up the reader’s mind to what men really think. A few weeks ago I wrote a couple of guest blogs in an attempt to try and answer the question as to what lad lit is and you can check them out at By The Letter Book Reviews and Linda’s Book Bag, or follow the hashtag #LadLitBlogTour on Twitter and hopefully it will all start to make a bit more sense!

What moved you to write The Drought and The Flood in the ladlit genre?

I didn’t specifically set out to write in the lad lit genre (to be honest I wasn’t even aware of lad lit until a reviewer read The Drought and called it lad lit!). I wanted to write a comedy about dating and relationships but from the point of view of the man. My wife is a huge romcom fan and I’ve sat through countless films with her where I end up shouting at the TV ‘But a man wouldn’t say that!’ At the time I was also performing stand-up comedy, and a lot of what I would talk about on stage would be about dating and relationships. A lot of my jokes came from my own experiences or stories friends would tell me about, especially those about dating and girls, so I had lots of material and decided one day just to put it all down on paper and The Drought was born.

The situations in your series appear to me as unimaginable. Every time I read about poor Dan Hilles and his misfortune I have to choose between laughing or feeling sorry for the man (to be honest, I usually just laugh). Are the books based on your own experiences or did you make it all up?

Unfortunately yes, they are! Especially the story in The Drought. That is loosely based on a period in my life in my twenties when I had just come out of a long-term relationship and had completely forgotten the rules of the dating game. Most of the stories in that book are true (either my own experiences or those of friends), with a huge dose of exaggeration sprinkled on top. The Flood probably has less real life experiences, but you always hear stories about the ridiculous things guys say or do when they’re trying to impress a girl, so I try to wrap that all up in the story. Dan Hilles, Sex Love and Dating Disasters, The Drought, Characters, Characters from books, images of characters from books, Lad Lit, Dick Lit, Fratire, Chick Lit, Lad Lit characters, Chick Lit characters, Funny book, Comedy book, eBook, Kindle, Novel, Paperback, Dating, Dating Disasters, Relationships, Rom Com, RomCom, Steven Scaffardi,

I discovered, after some snooping around on your blog, that you actually have Characters Bios! As a reader, I think that it is really awesome that you took the time to actually have the characters and their personalities all worked out. What gave you the idea to write out and create the characters this extensively? And do you sometimes consult the bios yourself as well when you are writing?

Thanks! It’s something I believe is really important for a writer. I want to know as much about my characters as possible – whether they happen to appear in one chapter or all of the chapters. The more you know about a character, the easier it is to write about how they would react in certain situations. I got a really talented guy called Jamie Sale at Toonjam Studios to create cartoon characters for all the characters in both books. For me it is just a nice touch for the reader. Whenever I read a really good book I always want a little bit more. I want to know what happened to the characters, what they really look like. That is the main reason why I wrote The Flood as a follow-up. I fell in the love with the characters I had created and I wanted to know what they got up to next. I never set out to write a series, but now I’m hoping that the Sex, Love and Dating Disasters series will have another three or four books to come.

If you could take any of the women from The Drought and The Flood out on a date, who would you pick and why?

That is a great question! Probably the best question I have ever been asked about my books. It’s a tough choice because as you’ll know (without giving anything away) the girls in my books are not always the type of girls you would want to spend a lot of time with! I have always had a soft spot for Grace, but in terms of going out on a date that you’d never forget it has to be Denise (Dan’s stalker from The Flood). You couldn’t date Denise for very long but there’d be no shortage of fun with her. She would probably drive you to a nervous breakdown in the process, not to mention her ex-boyfriend Ronnie always lurking around, but what a thrill ride it would be! You’d certainly have some great stories to tell you friends down the pub.

The Flood will be released the 30th of April. Which scene did you love to write the most and why?

Hmmm, there is one scene I really like but I can’t really say too much about it without giving something away to someone who hasn’t read the book before. With that in mind, there are two other scenes I really enjoyed writing. The first is when the boys end up in a pub in Nottingham and all hell breaks loose and they find themselves in a massive pub brawl. One reviewer said of that scene: “Funniest bar fight scene in the history of literature. I laughed so hard I woke up my snoring girlfriend.” I’m a big Quentin Tarrantino fan and I think that scene is the closest any of my books would get to his world, in a funny way of course. The other scene involves Dan’s journey to work on the train. I love observational comedy and I think lots of people relate to and laugh at the things we all do every day. For example, every guy who travels to work on public transport will have at least once in their life experienced the moment when they are sitting down on a packed train and they see a woman and think: “Is she pregnant?” In my own experience getting the answer to that question wrong can be very awkward if you offer you seat to a woman who is not pregnant!

Since I have already had the pleasure of reading The Flood, here is my final question for you: What can we expect from you next?

I am already planning the third instalment of Sex, Love and Dating Disasters. The working title is The Pact and sees Dan and his mates head over to Latvia in search for a girl who dated one of Dan’s friends. It’s a little bit different to the first two books, and is a bit of a tribute to one of my favourite books, The Book With No Name, in that the reader will meet a whole host of weird, wonderful and whacky calendars including a Russian mafia don, two drag queens, two karaoke singing cops who love Wham, a pimp who thinks he is living in the 70s, a sleazy hotel boss and his strange wife, and a henchman called Ray the Local.

Steven, thank you so much for your honesty and for the opportunity for this amazing interview! I had a great time and, to be honest, you’ve made my week ^_^ Enjoy the rest of the tour and I’m looking forward to reading The Pact!

Thursday, 15 March 2018

Lad Lit - who'd have thought....

The Drought by Steve Scaffardi
This post was originally posted on Boon's Bookcase on Tuesday, April 19, 2016 as part of the #LadLitBlogTour

Lad Lit - who'd have thought....
I must admit, when Steven Scaffardi contacted me to ask if I would like to be a part of his Lad Lit Blog Tour, I didn't know what he meant, but if you can have chick lit, then why not lad lit!!

Join me for the first date of this massive Blog Tour and I hope you enjoy maybe your first taste of "Lad Lit"! and you can download a free e-book as well.

Guest Post
One month, 39 blogs, five countries, three continents and a whole host of interviews, character Q&A’s, guest blogs, book reviews and the odd giveaway – I am taking lad lit global. From London to California, Bradford to Texas, Ipswich to Montana; the #LadLitBlogTour bus will be globetrotting from as far afield as Australia then back into Europe across Scotland and The Netherlands, and it all starts here in Kent, England at Boon’s Bookcase…

“And why are you doing this?!” I hear you scream from your favourite reading armchair. Because I believe lad lit has not been given the exposure it deserves. It’s almost like a nonentity! Pop into any high street bookstore or online book retailer and you’ll find categories for horror, suspense, thriller, religion, history – there is even a bloody pets section! That means that Fido the bunny rabbit who lives in your garden even has his own reading section.

But what about Nick Hornby? Or Mike Gayle? And let’s not forget the likes of Danny Wallace, Matt Dunn, Nick Spalding and Jon Rance. I could go on!

Where do all these great writers live? Comedy maybe. Chick lit possibly. Self-help perhaps (in the cases of some men!).

No, I’ll tell you where they live – in fiction. That’s right, fiction. The place where everyone lives! Stephen King drops by when he is not staying at his luxurious holiday home in horror. Sophie Kinsella lives there while her chick lit mansion is being renovated. JK Rowling stays over whilst her Fantasy castle is being relocated to Monaco. And as all these wonderful authors come and go as they please, poor old Hornby and co can do nothing but look enviously on, knowing full well that they have a perfectly good genre that bookshelves everywhere choose to ignore. Being confined to fiction is a bit like still living with your parents – you have no independence.

Sure, I’m being a little dramatic, so let me put it another way. After you have read a Helen Fielding novel and want to read something similar, you go and check out some of her chick lit peers and read an Adele Parks book. The same when you read Robert Ludlum and progress to Jeff Abbott, or when you pick up James Herbert after reading Dean Koontz.

But where do you go after reading Matt Dunn? Did you know that there a new kid on the block called Ben Adams who has been having some pretty decent success with his first two novels? Or after zipping through Mike Gayle’s awesome collection of books, would you automatically think about picking up something by Jon Rance?

That is why I’m doing this Lad Lit Blog Tour. Lad lit is funny, it’s endearing, it’s nostalgic, it’s emotional, it’s relatable; it’s everything you could want from a good contemporary novel. And despite the name, lad lit is for both men and women. When Chick Lit Plus reviewed my debut novel The Drought they said: “Steven Scaffardi's first novel is absolutely hilarious and will leave every reader, male or female, laughing out loud.”

The frustrating thing is that most readers have not heard of lad lit. In fact, most of the book bloggers who have kindly agreed to host me on this Lad Lit Blog Tour tell me they are not familiar with the genre, yet you only need to pop along to Goodreads to see that the majority of people who have read one of my novels respond with something along the lines of ‘laugh out loud’ funny, although you will find one reviewer that called The Drought imbecilic, but you can’t please everyone all the time. Besides, it is a story about a guy trying to break his dry patch endless streak. I guess that is a little imbecilic!

But back to the point in hand! Lad lit can’t simply keep sleeping on chick lit’s couch. We have gate-crashed that party for long enough, and even though it’s a relationship that makes sense, they both need a bit of space from each other to do their own thing.

So over the next 30 days, please join me as I attempt to fly the flag for lad lit (and of course do a little bit of promotion for my Sex, Love and Dating Disasters series) and if by the end of the tour, a few more people have picked up a lad lit novel and given it a read, then my mission is complete.

Thank you for having me Julie, you’ve been a wonderful host, but just like the littlest hobo it’s time for me to keep moving on. Maybe tomorrow I’ll want to settle down – and you can find out by joining me at My Book File.

Steven Scaffardi is the author of the Sex, Love and Dating Disaster series. His first novel, The Drought, is the laugh-out-loud tale of one man's quest to overcome the throes of a sexual drought. After the stormy break-up with his girlfriend of three years, Dan Hilles is faced with the daunting task of throwing himself back into the life of a single man. With the help of his three best pals, Dan is desperate and determined to get his leg-over with hilarious consequences!