|artist Alberto Seveso|
I was about three quarters of the way with the first draft of “Deadly Impressions” when the thought struck me that the women in both of my novels are the catalyst for the actions, tension and release of the stories.
“The Devil’s Violin” presents two strong personalities on opposite sides of the fence. Maria Sanoni the Italian beauty who partners up with Gus Happy to steal Paganini’s violin from the museum in Genoa, is the exact opposite of FBI agent Aerial George and yet it is this opposing force, like the positive and negative poles of a magnet that pull the story together. Both women are strong and skilled and each excerpts a unique influence from the time they are introduced into the picture.
In “Deadly Impressions” I present, for lack of a better description at the moment, a ’grittier ’book with women more intense. Three women of singular strengths. Conchita Morales, a twenty-six year old L.A. prostitute is much more than a hooker. She is perceptive with an unusually natural intellect and a honed skill to manipulate people beyond the use of her sexual facilities.
Although FBI Agents Chris Clarke and Chubbs Gonzales return in this semi-sequel to my first novel, the LA private detective, Arney Blackburn, the main character in the story falls in love with Conchita even though he knows better. On reflection, “…the truth of the matter was he really liked her despite her background and who she was. A hooker is a hooker is a hooker, and yet Arney knew, or thought he knew, her tender side and it was captivating. She had heart. She had been through an unimaginable hell most of her adult life, but was still in one piece and somehow had maintained her dignity. That’s what attracted him to her. She had managed to live a life doling out sex for a living and was still a human being.”
Stephanie Fick is our kidnap victim. She is the twenty-six year old granddaughter of Ezekiel Fick, the Pasadena multi-billionaire who had spent his youth in Switzerland during WWII. His uncle was Roderich Fick a favorite architect of Adolf Hitler.
Stephanie’s impact on the story is tantamount to the success of the tale although we don’t hear much from her, she proves to be all important.
Finally, Madeline Steinman, who started her career in Paris at the age of twenty-six in 1946. Today she is in her ninety’s and presides over the art world as the queen of the art restoration. Her relationships with both uncle and nephew Fick are at the foundation of the book.
While living in Los Angeles for twenty years I spent time in the nineteen-eighties as an assistant to Manly Palmer Hall the Canadian born twentieth century philosopher and student of ancient religious and philosophical beliefs. Through a rather odd set of circumstances I lectured at his Philosophical Research Society from 1984 – 1988. My series contained five or more lectures, one presented each week and to my surprise, were well attended.
I was engrossed in study at the time, desperately trying to educate myself while writing and publishing poetry. I found myself very influenced by women throughout the past two centuries who were scholars, intellectuals, artists and above all great personalities. One of my series I named, “The Goddess on the Threshold” and over the weeks I helped people to discover Lou Andres Salome/Kathleen Raine/Frances Yates/ Florence Farr/ H.P. Blavatsky/Mary Cassette/ Emily Dickenson and so many others.
Women in the arts and sciences have contributed equal shares alongside their male counterparts of pertinent and timeless concepts made physical by the magic of the intellect and the imagination. I invite you to take some time to investigate women in the arts.
These types of exceptional females shall always find a way into my efforts as a novelist. I need them to be there.