Cover Art for New Gothic Mystery

Just received cover art for my new book, a gothic mystery that takes place in France in 1928. I love it! A little spooky, and it matches one particular scene in the book. Release date is in a couple of months.Stolen Memories Cover

Here’s the synopsis on the back: 

A brutal attack along the banks of the Seine in 1928 leaves a young Englishwoman close to death in a Paris hospital, without a memory in her head. She soon comes up against a vengeful husband who accuses her of the theft of priceless art, the French gendarmes who have linked her to a murder on the Riviera, and a scorned lover who is trying to kill her. The husband, believing his wife’s amnesia is faked, spirits her away to an ancient chateau in the French province of Champagne, where prehistoric dolmens and standing stones dot the fields and caves hewn out of limestone are used for more than storing wine. But who is trying to poison her and bury her in an avalanche of slate? Who is laying a trap for her deep within the wine caves of Champagne?


Published in: on August 14, 2015 at 2:18 pm  Comments (10)  

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  1. Can’t wait—you are doing a different time period of history. Sarah

    • Not a different time period (it’s still the 1920s) but in France, of course, there was no Prohibition, so the Twenties were vastly different. No rise of organized crime, no deadly illegal booze, no speakeasies. Most French people (heck, most Europeans) thought Americans were crazy for prohibiting liquor, but they were sure interested in importing jazz, cocktails, the Charleston, and the silent movies.

  2. Sounds exciting. And I love the cover 🙂

    Can I ask you something? How did you go about reserching 1920s Europe?
    I have a solid knowledge of USA history and social history in the 1920s, but now I’d like to turn to Europe, always in the 1920s. But as I started thinking about research, I was overwhelmed. While I only had to reserch one nation for the USA, there are a host of different nations, cultures and histories to reserche in Europe.
    I’m reading a basic history book (as reminder, of course I studied history at school 😉 ), but it’s overwhelming me rather than helping me… at least at this stage.

    Any suggestion?
    I’m interested in Italy (my homeland), German, Britain, Ireland and possibly France.

    • Let’s see . . . how to answer that? I have to think back on what I did for research. I can see why you’re overwhelmed. Five countries? I was setting a story in just two, England and France, and I have spent a good deal of time over the past 50 years in both.
      Much of what I wrote draws on personal experience with, say, snails on the floor of caves or a small-town celebration with torchlight parade or hunebeds out in the middle of fields. I spent some high school and some college in France, so am sensitive to the French version of history. I find a lot online, such as London Underground in the 1920s (very different stations then) and champagne production techniques. Biographies are helpful (the one about the Veuve Clicquot was great) and Paris in the 1920s is full of Americans like Josephine Baker whose biographies can be tapped for information. My main character is English so I used English lists of period slang, not American, and had a member of the English side of the family read the manuscript to make sure there weren’t any modern words.
      Europe in the 1920s wasn’t nearly as exciting or dangerous as America. Their Roaring Twenties lacked Prohibition, speakeasies, organized crime, gangsters, bootleg liquor, bathtub (poisonous) gin, and Tommy guns. Everyone was still reeling from the destruction of WWI, so things weren’t as prosperous as they were in the U.S.
      Sorry I don’t have an easy answer for you. I guess what I’d recommend is narrowing your research to one country, or at least, one at a time. With your background, you would probably want to choose Italy. I would, anyway. Good luck!

      • Thanks anyway for trying 😉

        I don’t really agree that Eaurope was less exciting that America in the Tweties. Lots of thing were happening here too. In Britain, society was very close to America in terms of social evolution and there was a strong interest in occultusm, following the discovery of Tut tomb. In France there was a very lively artistic and intellectual life, not to mention Germany and the Weimar Republic, where a lot of innovation in all creative and intellectual fields was happening in spite of the rise of the Nazi party.
        In fact, I’m particularly intrigued by the Weimar Repubbic. I will very likely start there 🙂

        Well, it’s true, I’m Italian. I’m also European. I’m very intersted in what was happening in my country in the 1920s (rise of the Fascism, I’m afraid, but also Futurism and the drive to modernity), but what was happening in Germany was relevant to every sigle European person. That’s why we are all familiar with it, we have all studied it at school.

        So, I think I’ll finish the history compendioum first, maybe decide on a general plot, then go from there 🙂

  3. You know what? Your’e right. Europe was as much or more “exciting and dangerous” than America–America had the gangsters and the Klan, which didn’t exist in Europe–but Europe had fascism. Equally bad or worse. Fortunately, Europe overcame fascism; American hasn’t yet overcome gangsterism or racism.

  4. Exciting! I am going to France in October, so I will be excited to read this book before or after my France vacation.

    • Where are you going in France? In much of the countryside, you can visit wine caves dug out of stone, like the ones I describe in the book.

  5. Really awesome cover art, Mary, very reminiscent of those Victoria Holt and Phyllis Whitney covers from decades ago. Quite appealing.

    • That’s the look I was going for. Glad you approve!

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