Thursday, 12 November 2015

Blog Tour: City of Illusions by Judith Works

Hey! Thrilled to be a part of the blog tour for City of Illusions by Judith Works. Today, I am sharing a guest post, in which Judith talks about how she fell in love with Italy. Do check it out! 

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Author: Judith Works
Genre: Romance, Mystery, Suspense Thriller
Page Length: 210 Pages
Publication Date: November 2014 
Publishers: Booktrope
Laura impulsively applies for a job in glorious Rome without telling her husband, Jake. She wants to leave gray Seattle and make her dreams of a more exciting life and a rejuvenated marriage come true. When the offer unexpectedly arrives she talks Jake into the adventure. After all, she is nearing 30 and Jake crossed that threshold only a few years earlier. Life might pass them by if they don’t take the chance. But she and Jake soon learn la dolce vita is far more complicated than they imagined when they are catapulted into a world full of intrigue, deceit, and infidelity lurking behind the sunny piazzas and crumbling ruins. Their lives spin out of control when na├»ve Jake, cast adrift as the trailing spouse, is sucked into a gang of antiquity thieves. Laura is left to find her own way the city of yearning, of echoes, of illusions. What will she do? Preserve her marriage at all costs or search elsewhere for the key to the happiness she desires?

In this women’s fiction set in the romantic city of Rome, author Judith Works tells the classic tale of the Old World colliding with the New but with a modern twist.

Author's Bio:

Ran away to the Circus (Maximus) in mid-life. In reality, I worked for the United Nations in Rome for four years as a legal advisor to the director of human resources. When the contract was up my husband and I reluctantly returned to the US. But we pined for the land of pasta, vino, art, and sunny piazzas. Then the gods smiled and offered a chance to return to Rome. Six more years in the Eternal City passed much too quickly.

Now back in the US, I volunteer for arts and literary organizations when not traveling to Italy and other places on my list. And whenever I am in Rome I toss coins into the Trevi Fountain to ensure yet another return to enjoy la dolce vita.

Find her here: Facebook | Twitter | Amazon | GoodReads | Website

Guest Post

Our first weekend outside Rome provided us with an indelible experience that finally put to rest any lingering doubts we had about moving to Italy. New friends, Peter and Maria, gathered us up for a trip to the Tuscan town of San Gimignano. It was February—cool, damp, but sunny. Our route took us through small hill towns and quiet fields until we rounded a bend and saw a city in the far distance, its skyline punctuated with what looked like skyscrapers, black against the blue sky. In reality it was close by and our destination, a twelfth-century walled town filled with ancient towers. Winter afternoon was already setting in. The low sun lit the cold medieval stones, beckoning us to bundle up and start exploring. The empty cobbled streets echoed with the raucous cry of jackdaws circling the churches, civic buildings, and towers. Built when the Guelphs, supporting the pope, and Ghibellines, the Holy Roman Emperor’s faction, battled each other for power, each side tried to build taller than the other for military advantage. Now peace reigned and many of the towers had fallen or were crumbling with age, home for roosting birds and dangling vegetation.

Our hotel incorporated part of the ancient town walls. When I looked out our window I could see below me the tiled roofs of stone houses, laundry hanging limp in the damp, and small cars tucked into courtyards. The restaurant, decorated with medieval and Renaissance pottery and sculptures, featured a dinner menu suitable for the season with venison, wild boar, and red wine from nearby woods and vineyards.

The morning brought a slow sun rising over misty fields already emerald green with winter wheat. Cypress, olive, and umbrella pine trees completed the dreamy picture. We departed after breakfast for Montalcino. The rows of now-bare vines covering the hills had long since given up their fruit and golden fall leaves. Men were already in the vineyards beginning to prune the sleeping plants before spring arrived. We paused at a fattoria to buy thick red Brunello di Montalcino. The owner showed us his winery and helped load bottles in the car trunk while an elderly woman did laundry by hand in a tub placed underneath an old olive tree. Her hands were as gnarled as the tree’s trunk from wringing out the cold, dripping garments over the years.

The Taverna dei Barbi was the venue for a lunch of freshly made ravioli filled with zucca, pumpkin, followed by grilled bistecca. Then, as if we were modern-day mendicants, we followed the Via Francigena, a medieval pilgrim route, to the Abby of St. Antimo. The rolling countryside was dotted with chestnut forests, vineyards, and olive groves. A few dead sunflower stalks, their heads declined as if in prayer, stood in fields waiting to be ploughed under in the spring.

Founded by Charlemagne in the eighth century, the abbazia had a “new” church and bell tower dating from the twelfth century while incorporating elements of the original. We crossed the greensward toward the massive door. The sound of a Gregorian chant at the hour of Vespers greeted us as we entered the nave. The church was empty except for a young monk whose voice filled the space. We listened to the sound in peace while gazing upon a magnificent carving of a crucified Christ. With eyes open and head to one side, he appeared to be listening too as he ascended to heaven.

We knew that we had found our Italy.

Thanks, Judith!
Don't forget to check out City of Illusions, if you love Mystery Novels.

Book Tour Organized by I ♥ all the Books Tours
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