From bestselling author Dani Atkins, a new collection of three irresistible love stories, all linked by one very special dress.
Suzanne is engaged to be married to the man of her dreams – except the lead up to her wedding is beginning to feel more like a nightmare. Can Suzanne uncover the truth about her fiancé ahead of her big day?
Bella’s life was on track until the day of the hen party when everything changed. Now she must find the strength to rebuild her future – and decide who she wants to spend it with.
Mandy’s grandmother has fallen in love but her family don’t approve. For her grandmother’s dreams to come true, Mandy has a secret wedding to plan, and a very special dress to find.
These are the three strangers whose stories are about to be woven together by one perfect wedding dress.
Q & A: Dani Atkins -The Wedding Dress
Which comes first when you are creating your story, characters, plot or setting? Why is this?
For me, it’s always the plot that sparks a story. The idea for many of my books has begun with a simple question: ‘I wonder what would happen if…?’ Sometimes the ideas come from a real-life event I’ve read or heard about, but they could just as easily pop up from anywhere. Most of them lead to nothing, but if you’re lucky you’ll stumble upon one that gets its hooks in you and refuses to let go. That’s the one you don’t ignore.
What are the inspirations for this story?
The inspiration for The Wedding Dress came from my fascination (my husband would call it obsession) with the many television programs devoted to weddings and bridal gowns. If it weren’t for Don’t Tell the Bride, I Found the Gown, Curvy Brides’ Boutique and Say Yes to the Dress I might never have had the idea for this book. But once it was in my head, there was no shaking it off. One dress, three different brides, three love stories. I was already planning the weddings and couldn’t wait to invite readers to join me.
How do you make your dialogue authentic?
I love writing dialogue because that’s when your characters truly come alive. When reading, good dialogue is the thing that keeps me hooked to a book, rather than long descriptive passages – however beautifully they might be written. There’s only one way to ensure your dialogue sounds authentic and that’s to say it out loud. I’ve got into the habit of reading my work out loud at the end of each day and it’s a great way of immediately spotting when something works and also when it sounds clunky or out of character.
Why do you enjoy writing romantic fiction?
Although I enjoy reading a variety of genres, romantic fiction is the one I will always gravitate towards. I love it for the escapism it offers and for the joy of having a front-row seat as a love story unfolds before you.
The last few years have been very strange for everyone and when life seemed bleak thank goodness there were books – and in particular romantic fiction – to help us to escape it, if only for a little while.
One of the best pieces of advice I’ve heard for aspiring writers is to ‘write the book you would like to read’. So that’s what I do.
Describe ‘The Wedding Dress’ in five words and say why they epitomise your story.
Love. Friendship. Family. Loyalty. Hope.
To me, these are the ingredients of not just a good story, but of a good life.
Can you share what the best things about being a writer are?
The best part of this job is doing something for a living that you would choose to do as a hobby. I don’t think you can – or should – ever consider writing a book to earn a great deal of money because that literary jackpot only happens to a very small select group of authors. But being in the fortunate position of being paid for something you love doing, is a privilege and one I will never take for granted.
Aside from the pleasure of writing, my greatest joy is connecting with readers. When someone tells me that they were up until 3 o’clock in the morning, because they simply couldn’t stop reading my book, or cried on the train while reading it, it is the best reward in the world.
What are you currently writing?
I have recently finished working on my next book Six Days which will be published in the spring of 2022 and am about to begin my next project which – unbelievably – will be my tenth book. This feels like a real milestone moment on a journey I still can’t quite believe I’ve been lucky enough to have taken.
Dani Atkins January 2022
Dani Atkins is an award-winning novelist. Her 2013 debut Fractured (published as Then and Always in North America) has been translated into 18 languages and has sold more than half a million copies since its first publication in the UK. Dani is the author of four other bestselling novels, one of which, This Love, won the Romantic Novel of the Year Award in 2018. Dani lives in a small village in Hertfordshire with her husband, one Siamese cat and a very soppy Border Collie. Follow Dani on Twitter @AtkinsDani
I received a copy of this book from Head of Zeus – Aria via NetGalley in return for an honest review.
Three different love stories exploring relationships. This explores love in all its forms engagingly. The connection between the three stories is the wedding dress. The characters’ stories are individual, but each has a link to the other. Believable characters, emotional stories and a magical connection make this a lovely uplifting read.