Quick summary of A Groovy Kind of Love by Karen Wojcik Berner. Uptight British lit lover meets a free spirit at a book club and his world is turned upside down! After placating to his father’s demands that he play Little League baseball and major in computer programming in college rather than his beloved English literature, Thaddeus assumed that several years into his career, he would finally get some peace and quiet.
Then he met Spring Pearson, the younger, free-spirited daughter of Hippie parents, at a book club meeting. Instantly smitten, Thaddeus finally worked up the courage to ask Spring out. But will an old college pinkie-swear promise Spring made fifteen years ago get in the way of this bibliophilic romance?
"A Groovy Kind of Love” is the third and final installment of Karen Wojcik Berner’s Bibliophiles series. Written as stand-alone novels, each book focuses on one or two members of a fictional suburban classics book club, revealing their personal stories while the group explores tales spun by the masters.
Our interview with Karen Wojcik Berner...
MCOTW: What was your inspiration for A Groovy Kind of Love? When did you begin writing it?
KWB: I think it’s fun to bring opposites together and see what happens, so I decided that Thaddeus Mumblegarden IV, uptight anglophile and computer programmer, and the much younger, free-spirited daughter of Hippies Spring Pearson should fall in love. They were minor characters in my first two books and the most unlikely of pairs.
I started thinking about this book while finishing my second, Until My Soul Gets It Right, but didn’t start working on it fully until 2013.
Don’t worry if you haven’t read my other two novels, A Whisper to a Scream and Until My Soul Gets It Right. Although part of a series, they are all written as stand-alone novels.
MCOTW: Tell us about the cover art for A Groovy Kind of Love. Who designed it? Why did you choose it?
KWB: The incredibly talented staff at Streetlight Graphics designed the cover as well as the interior of both the ebook and the paperback. I think it is a good blend of both main characters with the computer and tea cup representing Thaddeus and the sunglasses and doodles for Spring.
MCOTW: Who is your favorite character from your book and why?
KWB: Obviously, I love Thaddeus and Spring. But I have to say I really enjoyed writing Spring’s parents, Bob and Donna, the most. I tapped into my Hippie side and researched the movement and the time period. I was too young at the time to fully understand it, but my father always said he was glad I was born when I was, otherwise I would have been out protesting with the various civil rights marches, and he would have had to bail me out of jail. He’s right.
MCOTW: Who is your least favorite character from A Groovy Kind of Love and why?
KWB: I don’t think anyone in this novel is all bad or all good. Everyone’s a shade of grey, just like in life, but I think Thaddeus’s father, Thaddeus Mumblegarden III, is a difficult man who has a hard time when his son doesn’t fit his preconceived notions of what a boy should be.
MCOTW: Which character, if any, is most like you in A Groovy Kind of Love?
KWB: You know, many characters hold a little piece of their authors inside, but I have to say, Thaddeus and his love of England and British literature is something we both share. I majored in English and communications in college, and I must confess, England is my happy place.
MCOTW: What is something interesting about A Groovy Kind of Love that your readers and ours would like to know?
KWB: People think Hippies were all about sex, drugs, and rock-n-roll, and while some of that is true, many of them also protested the Vietnam War, marched for Civil Rights and then Women’s Rights, and genuinely tried to change the world. And to a certain degree, they did. I tried to reflect that in the characters of Bob and Donna Pearson.
Also, Thaddeus is my age, so it was fun to delve back in time to Chicago in the seventies, a time when the Sears Tower (now the Willis Tower, but Chicagoans refuse to call it that) was under construction and the extraordinary department store Marshall Field’s still existed.
MCOTW: Tell us a little about yourself when you are away from writing. What hobbies, talents, and adventures are we most likely to find you involved in when not writing?
KWB: I’m a mom of two and am usually on the sidelines of either football (fall) or lacrosse (spring/summer) cheering on my youngest son who’s a freshman in high school or listening to his concerts (he plays electric guitar and violin). My oldest is a junior in college, majoring in history and classics, and just became a certified personal trainer. Maybe someday he can train me. I’d probably be his greatest challenge. I’m more of a cozy in with a good book and some tea person.
I grew up surrounded by the arts. My father was the vice-chairman of our town’s Arts and Humanities Commission, so theater, music, dance, and art was very important in my house. He and I performed in local variety shows and sang for many years in various choirs. I still sing now to release tension. For me, it’s better than yoga. We are lucky to live fairly close to downtown Chicago and all of its wonderful museums and theater companies.
MCOTW: What can your readers expect from you in the future? What projects are you working on?
KWB: I’m going to be pitching a manuscript I finished before the Yuletide season that’s in a completely different genre (chick lit for those who hate pink), then it’s back to writing the second book in that series. I’m also going to start researching my next contemporary fiction novel and fiddle around with a few short stories that are buzzing around in my head.
MCOTW: What is most rewarding about your role as an author--and as the author of A Groovy Kind of Love?
KWB: The best part of being an author is hearing how my books affect readers. I’ve done several book club visits, and each person comes to the work with their own background and perspectives. It’s fascinating and always leads to a great conversation. I’m available for book club visits, by the way, either through Skype or FaceTime, or if you’re in the Chicago area, in person. Drop me a line at firstname.lastname@example.org. I’d love to chat.
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Buy on Amazon | B&N | iTunes | Smashwords | Kobo
About the Author
Karen Wojcik Berner writes contemporary women’s fiction, including the Amazon best-selling series, the Bibliophiles. An award-winning journalist, her work has appeared in several magazines, newspapers, and blogs,
including the Chicago Tribune, Writer Unboxed, Women's Fiction Writers, and Fresh Fiction.
She currently serves on the Author Council of LoveToReadEbooks.com and is a member of the Chicago Writers’ Association.
When not writing, she can be found on the sidelines of her youngest’s football or lacrosse games, discussing the Celts with the oldest, or snuggling into a favorite reading chair with a good book and some tea.
Connect with the Author
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