Second Chance by Carla Caruso
On the night of her 36th birthday, Flora Brunelli is full of regrets. The celebrations have turned sour and life hasn’t gone according to plan. She wishes she could be 20 again. Then she finds herself zapped back in time, landing in the summer of 1998 when she was 20 years old. The Spice Girls are at the top of the charts and the X-Files is the hit TV show. It’s also the week Flora’s life unravelled.
For Flora, this is a chance to change her future: win back the love of her life, stay friends with her former best mate and succeed in landing her dream job. It should be easy. But her ex’s best friend, Lance Devic, who she never really noticed before, keeps popping up and messing with her head. And after a while Flora begins to wonder if living in the past really will deliver her the happiness she seeks?
‘I laughed until I couldn’t breathe.’ – Harlequin Junkie
‘I thought I said no questions.’ I sigh, fluffing up the feather boa I’ve stolen from the makeup room, currently draped over my semi-naked front in an attempt at modesty. This is where the Old Me’s tendency to throw caution to the wind got me: Major Humiliation Land.
Lance shakes his head, next to me in his Capri, parked in the shadowy side street alongside Xavier’s studio. TLC’s ‘Waterfalls’ wafts from his radio. ‘You can’t turn up looking like that and expect me not to wonder what the hell is going on. You could be caught up in something terrible for all I know, like, I don’t know…a prostitution ring or something.’
I roll my eyes. ‘Thank you very much, but I’m not. Trust me, this,’ I gesture at my poor excuse for an outfit, including a pale blue hand towel masquerading as a skirt and, of course, my black bra, ‘looks worse than it is.’
Lance bangs a hand on the steering wheel, looking anywhere but at me. ‘Do you need more shifts at the newsagency? Is that what this is?’
Oh, man. He really thinks I’m moonlighting as an exotic dancer. He has me pegged for that sort of girl. I’m mildly offended. A sigh escapes through my gritted teeth.
‘Look.’ I turn around, readjusting the towel on my lap so I don’t reveal quite so much thigh. Unfortunately, the fabric has a suspect-looking stain in one corner. Ew. ‘I’ll tell you what happened only if you swear not to tell Ruben or Clementine or, okay, anyone for that matter. Promise?’
Lance glances at me, then, flushing, looks ahead again, his jaw clenched. ‘Fine.’
I suck in a breath, watching a fly tiptoe across the dashboard. Right. Speeding up my explanation might make it less painful, like ripping off a Band-Aid. ‘Okay, I responded to an ad in the paper about posing for a semi-nude portrait for an artist – a respected artist – but I got cold feet. Bad. I realised what a stupid impulsive idea it was and suddenly wanted to get the hell out of there. So I called you, then escaped out of the bathroom mid-shoot. Hence,’ I look down, ‘my lack of proper clothing.’
Thank goodness phones with cameras weren’t ubiquitous in the nineties. It would have been a money shot to catch me wiggling through the window in next to nothing. My arms and legs bear the scratches. Lance remains stony-faced as though processing the information.
Q: Tell our readers why you think they’ll enjoy Second Chance
A: If you love ’90s Sandra Bullock movies, know what a ‘snapback’ is, and are ‘up’ on Jennifer Aniston’s dating history two decades ago, then you’ll love this fun time-travel trip to the nineties. It’s got romance, comedy and realism – all rolled into one!
Q: You may have noticed we like to include our favorite quote in our reviews of the books we read. What is your favorite quote from Second Chance?
A: My favorite quote from Second Chance is:
‘Who else would be standing on the roadside at this hour, wearing rollerblades?’
Carla Caruso would like to give away a copy of Second Chance. (ebook) To enter, just answer her question:
What’s your fave memory from the ’90s?
Giveaway is open to all (where allowed). You have until end of day May 31 to enter, winner will be announced soon after.
Giveaway sponsored by: Carla Caruso. No purchase necessary to win. You must be 18 or over to enter, void where prohibited. The number of eligible entries received determines the odds of winning. FVBR is not being compensated for this giveaway. If the winner declines to accept or fails to claim their prize within 72 hours of the announcement they forfeit their prize. Prize distribution is the sole responsibility of the giveaway sponsor. Fiction Vixen Book Reviews will not be held responsible for lost or misdirected prizes or for circumstances beyond our control. More information here.