Fresh FIction Box Not To Miss
Laura Morelli | 20 Questions: THE STOLEN LADY
Author Guest / September 22, 2021

1–What is the title of your latest release? THE STOLEN LADY: A Novel of WWII & the Mona Lisa  2–What is it about? Two women, separated by 500 years, hide the Mona Lisa—with unintended consequences. 3–What do you love about the setting of your book?  In a year when no one could leave home, traveling vicariously by writing THE STOLEN LADY truly kept me sane. In my imagination, I whisked myself away to Renaissance Florence, over the Alps to the Louvre, to the breathtaking châteaux of the Loire Valley, and to the hulking medieval abbeys of southern France. What an incredible imaginary journey during the strangest of times! 4–How did your main character(s) surprise you?  As a novelist, I have long wanted to explore the mind of someone who threw a treasured possession onto the Bonfire of the Vanities in Florence in February 1497. But building out the mindset and background of such a character (Bellina—a servant in Lisa Gherardini’s house) made me ask so many questions and then rethink them all. 5–Why will readers relate to your characters?  Bellina (at the turn of the 16th-century) and Anne (in the 1940s) are average women facing extraordinary circumstances. I think we’ve…

Laura Morelli | 20 Questions: THE NIGHT PORTRAIT
Author Guest / September 9, 2020

1–What’s the name of your latest release?  THE NIGHT PORTRAIT: A Novel of WWII & da Vinci’s Italy 2–What is it about?  THE NIGHT PORTRAIT is a dual-timeline historical novel about the creation of one of Leonardo da Vinci’s most famous paintings, Portrait of a Lady with an Ermine, and the woman who fought to save it from Nazi destruction during World War II. It’s a story of two women of art, two men of war, one painting, and one obsession.  3–What word best describes your main character(s)?  Determined. Brave! 4–What makes your story relatable?  I wanted THE NIGHT PORTRAIT pinned squarely on the historical record, but my goal was also to bring these two very different eras to life. I want readers to ask themselves what they might do in similar situations. The four different narrators deal with challenges that sometimes seem insurmountable. I believe historical fiction allows us to relate emotionally to the larger human experience. Following a protagonist’s story makes us ask what we would do, facing such challenges. An immersive historical tale allows us to understand how we are connected to the long threads of history. 5–Who are the people your main characters turn to when…