Fresh FIction Box Not To Miss
James Ziskin | The Five Animals Ellie Stone Meets in Florence, Italy
Author Guest / January 21, 2020

I write the Ellie Stone mysteries, a series featuring a young newspaper reporter set in the early 1960s. In the seventh installment, TURN TO STONE (January 21, 2020), Ellie is in Florence, Italy for an academic symposium honoring her late father. But just as she arrives on the banks of the Arno, she learns that her host, Professor Alberto Bondinelli, has been fished out of the river, quite dead. Then a suspected rubella outbreak leaves ten of the symposium participants quarantined in villa outside the city with little to do but tell stories to entertain themselves. Making the best of their confinement, the men and women spin tales and gorge themselves on fine Tuscan food and wine. And as they do, long-buried secrets about Bondinelli and his checkered past rise to the surface, and Ellie must figure out if one or more of her companions is capable of murder. It was great fun—challenging, too—researching and writing about one of my favorite places on earth, Florence. There’s so much history and art to be found, literally, on almost every corner. Ellie, of course, has visited Florence before. In 1946, shortly after the end of the war, she accompanied her father on…