Wednesday, 11 November 2015

Excerpt - City of Illusions by Judith Works - Blog Tour

Laura lazed on her balcony on a blue and gold early summer morning. Her mind floated, pleasurably vacant, until the thought of Derrick and the earrings intruded. She would miss him, with no one in her life to provide support and companionship. But the gift? Would she ever find herself in an appropriate setting to wear them? Too expensive and a reminder of events she wanted to forget. She momentarily considered a blog post beginning, Who would believe I have a problem with jewelry? She discarded the idea as juvenile.

A bird landed on the railing, cocking its head to inspect her. Slowly turning her own head to get a direct look, Laura saw it was a dove. She tried to put her coffee cup down quietly but it flew off at her movement.

She had enjoyed the antics of the swifts late last summer, and the millions of restless starlings, swooping in endlessly morphing geometric patterns in the waning winter daylight were spellbinding. Depending on her mood the designs were either beautifully ephemeral, or menacing, a black funeral veil floating in the wind. The starlings had long since flown off to wherever they went in the spring. Perhaps their departure also signaled life would become more settled.

The dove was a welcome visitor, maybe even a good omen. Much better than the little coin with an imprint of the Colosseum she’d found in the airport the day they arrived. The dove didn’t carry an olive branch in its beak, but it conveyed a sense of peace nonetheless with its soft beige body and elegant jet-black necklace. Surely she could find an area with trees to attract birds when she got the new job. If she got the job.

Once in her office Laura booted up her computer and scrolled through her inbox. It contained critiques of her work and new assignments. As she checked them for relevance and priority, she saw an e-mail from Francesco buried near the bottom of the incoming messages. 

Dear Laura, I must come to Rome next week for a few days. I’ll visit my family but afterward I would enjoy meeting Jake and seeing you again. I was sorry we all could not meet the last time and hope both of you will be available next Saturday. If you are, please let me know. 

City of Illusions

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 woman'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.

About Judith Works

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:

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