Bella Fortuna by Rosanna Chiofalo

Bella Fortuna


Rosanna Chiofalo

In this warm, enchanting debut novel, Rosanna Chiofalo evokes the extraordinary beauty of Venice, the charm of a close-knit New York neighborhood, and the joys of friendship, family, and surprising second chances...
Valentina DeLuca has made hundreds of brides' dreams come true. At Sposa Rosa, the Astoria, New York, boutique where she, her sisters, and their mother design and sew couture knock-off gowns, she can find the perfect style for even the most demanding customer. Now, it's her turn. Valentina has loved Michael Carello ever since he rescued her from a cranky shopkeeper when she was ten years old. He's handsome, chivalrous, and loyal. And in a few weeks, she's going to marry him--in Venice. 

But just when she thinks everything is falling into place, Valentina is forced to re-examine her life to see what truly makes her happy. And as she soon learns, in a place as magical as Venice, what seems like misfortune can turn out to be anything but, although who knows what may be waiting around the next corner? The chance to enjoy a moonlit gondola ride, to sip Prosecco in St. Mark's Square, to eat mouthwatering gelato, to put aside "sensible" for once and see where the warm Italian breezes guide her as she visits all the sights she's dreamed of: The Doge's Palace, Il Rialto, the little islands of Murano and Burano. And maybe, along the way, to discover that bella fortuna--good luck--isn't what you're given, but what you make.

My thoughts up next ---

Happy Talk Like a Pirate Day!


so I couldn't help meself, it be 

yo ho yo ho a pirate's life for me!

Image found on Disney's FB page.


Man Booker Prize short list announced

All info and image found here:

Man Booker Prize   2012 shortlist announced

11 September 2012
The six books were chosen by a panel of judges chaired by Sir Peter Stothard, Editor of the Times Literary Supplement. The shortlisted books were selected from the longlist of 12 announced in July. 
The shortlist is:
Author, Title (Publisher)
Tan Twan EngThe Garden of Evening Mists (Myrmidon Books)
Deborah LevySwimming Home (And Other Stories/Faber & Faber)
Hilary MantelBring up the Bodies (Fourth Estate)
Alison MooreThe Lighthouse (Salt)
Will SelfUmbrella (Bloomsbury)
Jeet ThayilNarcopolis (Faber & Faber)

Peter Stothard, Chair of judges, comments: “After re-reading an extraordinary longlist of twelve, it was the pure power of prose that settled most debates. We loved the shock of language shown in so many different ways and were exhilarated by the vigour and vividly defined values in the six books that we chose – and in the visible confidence of the novel's place in forming our words and ideas.”

The 2012 shortlist includes two debut novels, three small independent publishers, two former shortlisted authors and one previous winner. Of the six writers, three are men and three are women; four are British, one Indian and one Malaysian.

The winner of the 2012 prize will be announced at a dinner at London’s Guildhall on Tuesday 16 October, in a ceremony covered by the BBC. Each of the six shortlisted writers is awarded £2,500 and a specially commissioned beautifully handbound edition of his/her book. The winner receives a further £50,000.
Peter Stothard is joined on the 2012 Man Booker Prize for Fiction judging panel by: Dinah Birch, academic and literary critic;Amanda Foreman, historian, writer and broadcaster; Dan Stevens, actor and Bharat Tandon, academic, writer and reviewer.

2012 marks the 44th year of the prize, which began in 1969. A full history of the prize, including an interactive timeline, can be found on the Man Booker Prize website –– which has just been re-launched, allowing visitors to experience the prize across a variety of new platforms and formats.

News about the prize can also be found on Twitter@ManBookerPrize, which now boasts over 17,000 followers.

For further information about the prize please 

9-11 God bless America, and all of our fallen heros!

We will never forget  9-11.

We are the land of the free and home of the brave.  


Life After Death by Damien Echols

I'm only half way through this ARC (provided to me, at my request, by the publishers) and I have to say that if the second half is as moving as the first half???  WOW!   

LIFE AFTER DEATH  from Penquin/ Blue Rider Press

in stores and available for download Sept. 18

From Penquin/ Blue Rider Press, the publisher:
The definitive memoir by Damien Echols of the “West Memphis Three,” who was falsely convicted of comitting three murders, and an unforgettable account of his eighteen years on death row.

In 1993, three teenagers—Damien Echols, Jason Baldwin, and Jessie Misskelley Jr., who have come to be known as the West Memphis Three—were arrested for the murders of three young boys in Arkansas. The ensuing trial was rife with inconsistencies, false testimony, and public hysteria. Baldwin and Misskelley were sentenced to life in prison. Echols, deemed the “ringleader,” was sentenced to death at age eighteen. In a shocking reversal of events, all three were suddenly released in August 2011, and now Echols shares his story in full: from abuses by prison guards and wardens, to descriptions of inmates and deplorable living conditions, to the incredible reserves of patience, spirituality, and perseverance that kept him alive and sane for nearly two decades. Like The Glass Castle, Damien Echols tells a complicated, painful childhood story, and like Dead Man Walking, it is destined to be a classic of riveting, explosive prison literature. Echols reveals himself to be a brilliant writer, infusing his narrative with tragedy and irony in equal measure; he describes the terrors he experienced every day, his anger and outrage toward the American justice system, and he provides a window into life on death row in heartbreaking, agonizing detail.

"Damien Echols suffered a shocking miscarriage of justice. A nightmare few could endure. An innocent man on death row for more than eighteen years, abused by the very system we all fund. His story will appall, fascinate, and render you feeble with tears and laughter. A brilliant memoir to battle with literary giants of the calibre of Jean Genet, Gregory David Roberts, and Dostoevsky."
—Johnny Depp

“I immediately related to Damien. . . . I can remember kind of being looked upon as a freak, if you will, different, because I didn't dress like everybody else. . . I can empathize with being judged for how you look rather than being who you are.”—Johnny Depp

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