Love stories set against earth shattering events. People whose love overcomes monumental catastrophes and endures till the end of time. Those are the stories that always moved me. Romeo & Juliet, Gone With the Wind, Titanic, Love in the Fallen City by Eileen Chang. The characters in these stories are bigger than life, and their love is something we aspire to but ordinarily can only dream about.
I never intended to become a fiction writer, and I never planned on writing a book. For me, writing began as a hobby. About a year ago, I posted short stories I wrote on a forum dedicated to a fictional couple I loved when I was growing up. Along the way, the scene of Anthony and Tessa under the moonlight on the beach by Lake Michigan came to me. The image stayed in my mind. Their story grew in my head and could not be contained. I had to write it. It was as if they had a story to tell, and I was their instrument through which they shared all that they experienced.
It took four full-length novels to tell their entire story. Now, I am thrilled to share it with you. While writing this story, I learned so much about Chicago’s amazingly rich history, life in the early 1940s, and the Battle of Anzio, a heart-wrenching, heroic effort by the Allied soldiers that has been overshadowed by the vast success of Normandy. Although Rose of Anzio is at heart a love story, I hope it will give everyone who reads it a glimpse of what life might have been like for those who had lived through these times.
Oh, and yes, the person in the photo really is me.
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