– ‘The Magic of Wor(l)ds’ blog is a hobby, reviews and other bookish stuff on this site are done for free. –
Today I’m on the ‘A Cloud of Fraud’ blogtour, organised by Partners In Crime Tours, running from June 1 till June 30, 2019.
To promote this book I have a Q&As post, but b
About the Author :
Linda Ferreri is the author of several art crime novels as well as witty illustrated iBooks. She is a highly respected international art law expert who divides her time between the United States and Le Marche in Italy.
Sometimes she says her most amusing book was her first, The King of UNINI, a sophisticated little romance set in Paris.
A man is shot dead in front of City Hall in Philadelphia where his family is tangled in a bitter lawsuit. One brave woman, drawn there by a work of art, finds herself following a twisted trail to the hills of Le Marche in Italy to learn why. All the while, the cloud of fraud grows thicker and darker around her. But, as C. S. Forester said, perhaps the scandal of fraud enhances the flavor.
This thrilling story grabs and holds the reader from the first chapter through unexpected twists all the way to the richly satisfying ending. Art expert Claire Bliss and police Comandante Baldo are joined and antagonized by unforgettable characters in both Philadelphia and Italy. The authenticity of Ferreri’s players and their territories give special vibrance to the novel.
Lovers of the Renaissance will be drawn in immediately by the book’s cover, a painting of Mary Magdalene by Carlo Crivelli (ca. 1480) in the Rijksmuseum. Inside the book, a great art crime story unfolds together with a gem of a murder mystery.
A Cloud of Fraud is colorful, fast-moving entertainment.
Book Details :
Early on in the Hard-heads case, at one of the bar association luncheons, Judge Pirandello had positioned himself next to one of his former clerks who was now a successful litigator in the Probate Court. Biggers, by name. There was the introductory chat about the wellbeing of their family members and the joke about the latest case here or there. The dialogue was familiar to both of them. The Hard-heads plaintiff was a problem person, the judge had learned, and he needed to be squashed to put an end to mostly frivolous claims, driven by greed. Everybody in the family knew it, the judge heard. He knew the type. The Probate Court was littered with greedy relatives, angry children with buxom young stepmothers wearing expensive jewelry their fathers had bought. He knew it all. The judge wanted rid of this case, and so he was pleased to learn that it was not worthy of His Honor’s dignified much less close attention. The Hard-heads case had to go.
It would have gone long before now, the judge was thinking to himself as he growled into the cup of black tea, but these damned people had refused to take the hint, refused to be cowed or put in their places. Here and there at the few hearings he had conducted over this motion or that, he had seen a shrug of the shoulders by one or another lawyer.
“What could we do?” They might as well have said that out loud. The judge understood.
His knee was throbbing, but Judge Pirandello refused to have it replaced. The fact that cold weather was coming on made it worse. The goddamned orthopedic surgeon was another money-grubber. Were there no professionals left in his world who were not money-grubbers? He stretched his corpulence forward over the edge of his chair to reach for his footstool, then winced as he elevated the bad leg. He yelled out for Mary to bring him another cup of tea. Then, he opened the enormous file on the small table beside his chair.
In Re the Estate of Seri. He hated even the name. Italian people should not behave in this fashion, he thought. His own father would have come back from the dead to beat the daylights out of his heirs if they had behaved as these people were behaving. Suing one another.
Claiming fraud. All of it. Disgraceful., he thought. They were each poised to receive a generous amount of money but no, that wasn’t good enough. As with errant children, the Judge was both angry with and ashamed of the parties.
First of all thank you very much for taking the time to answer my questions, I really appreciate it. Here we go! 🙂
The pleasure is mine!
Can you, for those who don’t know you already, tell something about yourself and how you became an author?
From childhood, I wanted to write fiction, and I have always loved writing just about anything. In my busy career as a lawyer, I saw one story after another unfold in front of me. So finally, I gave myself permission to write stories. Most of my fiction involves art and some international aspect of the setting. That’s because I am an international art lawyer. The art world is just overflowing with exciting truth and fiction.
Which books did/do you love to read as a child/now as a grown-up?
My favorite story as a very young child was Cinderella…the ultimate fairy tale. And my favorite character was the Fairy Godmother. Nowadays, I love a great mystery or thriller, especially espionage books.
Is there a writer which brain you would love to pick for advice? Who would that be and why?
Michael Dibdin who, God rest his soul, is no longer with us. He wrote the Aurelio Zen series of mysteries that I love.
If you could, which fictional character (from your own book(s) or someone else’s) would you like to invite for tea and why?
Rose Cicarelli from this book, A Cloud of Fraud. I can’t spoil the book by saying more about her except that if anyone buys the movie rights for this book, the person casting characters will have a field day casting Rose Cicarelli.
Do you have some rituals or habits whilst writing?
Not really except that I need a room with a lot of sunshine. For quite a while, I thought about music but it sets a mood that I don’t always want. So I prefer silence in the background. And without my Mac, well…. I just can’t write longhand as fast as I can type.
Where do you come up with your idea(s)? Do people in your life need to be worried? 😉
Uh, yes, maybe they do! A dear friend gave me a sweatshirt to wear that warns people that they might be in my new novel. And it’s true. Ideas are all around all of us every day. I love watching people, especially when they have no idea they are shaping up to become a good story. I was trained as an art historian and so I see everything and everybody. Occasionally, a face or a garment gives me more than 1,000 words to write.
Are you a plotter or do you go with the flow, as a pantser?
I go with the flow, for the most part, but I know what the story is about before I begin, and who the main characters are. I care very much about the characters and I enjoy watching and listening to them as they perform in the play. They do very interesting things and I enjoy that as it unfolds. I think that for me, too much outlining would constrain them.
Can you give novice writers some tips (do’s/don’ts)?
Write all the time. I’m hardly the first or only author to say this, but over time, the product improves. And don’t make the mistake of spending your good writing time editing. Do that later.
What are your future plans as an author?
Many more novels. I’ve got one in the planning stages now.
Last, but not least : Can you give my readers one teaser from your book, which is featured here on my blog, please?
Certainly and with pleasure. Here are the first few paragraphs which invite the reader right in.
From the space between two enormous wood doors, hanging on shining brass hinges, there emerged a loud belch. A tidy woman seated at her desk just outside those doors shuffled, at the sound, then rearranged the papers on top.
Soon there came from the study beyond the portal the sound of a heavy weight being lowered into a capacious leather seat, and a grunt. The tidy woman’s feet pattered to the opening.
“Is it time for a cup of tea, Your Honor?” she asked.
“Oh Mary,” a deep voice boomed in reply. “Yes, but black this time.”
“Oh?” she asked with a giggle.
“Yes,” he replied. “I have to cope with this disgusting case, In re the Estate of Hard-heads! This Seri family mess.”
“Well, sir,” Mary said softly, “If anyone can sort out that mess of a lawsuit, it’s you. What’s it been now, five years?”
“Something like that,” he snorted. “I hate those goddamned people and those goddamned lawyers running around in there,” he pointed toward his courtroom in the Probate Court.
“Is there anything really new?” Mary asked him.
“I’m not supposed to know!” he roared. “That’s the hell of it. I’m not supposed to ask or to know until I’m all robed up and on that throne in
there. I’d like to smack the hell out of all of them. They won’t settle it so I have to try the case! All they want is money!”
Oh my 😮 … Isn’t that a great reason to pick up this book and to find out more?!
Thanks once again for this lovely interview, Linda Ferreri.
This is a rafflecopter giveaway hosted by Partners in Crime Virtual Book Tours for Linda Ferreri. There will be one (1) giveaway winner. One winner will receive one (1) Amazon.com Gift Card. The giveaway begins on June 1, 2019 and runs through July 2, 2019. Void where prohibited.
The Magic of Wor(l)ds
P.S. Are you an author (or publisher) who also wants a FREE interview like this? You can always contact me via e-mail!