Friday, March 27, 2015

Interview with Bluette Matthey, author of Abruzzo Intrigue and Corsican Justice


Title: Corsican Justice
Author: Bluette Matthey
Publisher: Blue Shutter Publishing
Pages: 284
Genre: Travel Mystery
Format: Kindle/Paperback

 In Bluette Matthey's first novel, Corsican Justice, we are introduced to Hardy Durkin, an American tour outfitter who seems to experience a mystery at every stop. Hardy is visiting Corsica for the first time to explore the possibility of arranging a hiking tour for   segments of Corsica's infamous hiking trail, the GR20.  He was also seeking closure from the fact that his father was killed in a highway accident on the island of Corsica several years earlier, Hardy learns his father was actually murdered.  The truth of his father's murder lies among arms smuggling, Russian mobsters, and judicial corruption.

For More Information

  • Corsican Justice is available at Amazon.
  • Discuss this book at PUYB Virtual Book Club at Goodreads.
Title: Abruzzo Intrigue
Author: Bluette Matthey
Publisher: Blue Shutter Publishing
Pages: 310
Genre: Travel Mystery
Format: Kindle/Paperback

 Bluette Matthey's latest novel, Abruzzo Intrigue, embodies mystery, thievery, and spiritual encounters in this entangled plot, all set in the landscape of rural Italy. Hardy Durkin, an American tour outfitter, leads a hiking tour into Italy's Abruzzo region where they experience the area's culture, food, and history.  There is a good deal of exposure to the region's religious and spiritual past, and one of the tour group members struggles with an odyssey of the soul that ends in redemption.  Some of the cast of characters are who they seem to be, but most aren't.  A member of the group, a grieving widower, plans to steal one of the Vatican's most precious religious relics, The First Eucharistic Miracle, from the Church of San Francesco in Lanciano.  The book is a collision of values and traditions while hiking through the oft-overlooked beauty of ancient Abruzzo.

For More Information

  • Abruzzo Intrigue is available at Amazon.
  • Discuss this book at PUYB Virtual Book Club at Goodreads.
Q: Welcome to The Writer's Life, Bluette.  Can you tell us a little bit about yourself and how long you’ve been writing?  
 
A:  My father was a master story teller whose tales of Bluffton, Ohio, a small town which had a wealth of eccentric characters, fascinated me growing up.  I also have a distant relative who, in her day, was a very well-known author whose books were made into movies.  So I think telling stories is in my genes.  I got hooked on Alfred Hitchcock Presents when I was quite young, and I’ve loved mystery ever since.  I also traveled with my parents throughout the United States and Canada in my youth, so I developed a love of travel and a thirst for adventure.  I used to think I was born in the wrong century until I realized how much I love hot showers and toilets that flush.  I actually started writing short stories when I was in third grade, and I’ve been writing in one form or another all my life.

Q: Can you please tell us about your book and why you wrote it?

A:  I decided to write a series of travel mysteries using the same protagonist, Hardy Durkin, who is not a super hero but, rather, a trek outfitter in Europe with a unique subset of skills. He puts his talents to good use in a plethora of situations in locales set along singular European compass points.

I chose Corsica as the setting for Corsican Justice because it is a Mediterranean island steeped in history, culture, and mystique, and I have a dear Corsican friend who opened my eyes to sub-turismo Corsica. I saw beneath the patina … the secret places most visitors miss, glimpses into the complexities of the island’s social structure. If you’ve ever been to Corsica you know what I mean.  It is savagely beautiful, still untamed, but deliciously French.

The premise of my second book, Abruzzo Intrigue, revolves around the theft of The First Eucharistic Miracle from Lanciano, Italy.  The region of Abruzzo has a rich heritage of culture, history, and great food.  It has a deep spiritual legacy, and is home to wonderfully- preserved Medieval mountain villages.  It is also nicknamed Europe’s ‘Green Heart’, with its great wealth of indigenous flora and fauna.

Q: What were some of the biggest challenges you faced writing it?

A: Character development is vital to the life of a story.  Characters carry the book or sink it. 
 
Q: Do you have a press kit and what do you include in it?  Does this press kit appear online and, if so, can you provide a link to where we can see it?

A:  My digital press kit consists of my website: bluettematthey.com, my Twitter page, Facebook, and Goodreads blog.  This is supplemented by give-away print materials supplied by my publisher. 
 
Q: Have you either spoken to groups of people about your book or appeared on radio or TV?  What are your upcoming plans for doing so?

A:  I did a live radio interview on ‘A Book and a Chat’ with Barry Eva, and another on The Author Show.  I did an interview with a local paper, and we’re planning several book signings in local bookstores.  
 
Q: Do you have an agent and, if so, would you mind sharing who he/she is?  If not, have you ever had an agent or do you even feel it’s necessary to have one?

A:  No.  When I researched well-known and new authors it seemed there was some question as to the value of agents in our current internet environment.

Q: Did you, your agent or publisher prepare a media blitz before the book came out and would you like to tell us about it?

A:  The publisher’s initial promotional campaign was short-circuited when the person in charge of marketing the books failed to execute the plan.  The publisher personally stepped in to restart the promotion.  There is also a push to contact travel editors and genre blog sites.
 
Q: Do you plan subsequent books?

A: Yes.  My books are actually a series featuring the same protagonist, Hardin Durkin.  My two published books, Corsican Justice and Abruzzo Intrigue, will be followed by Black Forest Reckoning, and Dalmatian Traffick.  My goal is to write through the alphabet, with each book title representing one letter.   
  
Q: Thank you for your interview, Bluette.  Would you like to tell my readers where they can find you on the web and how everyone can buy your book?

A:  My website is:  bluettematthey.com.  I have a blog on Goodreads, which links from my website.  I can be found on Twitter @Hardy Durkin or Bluette Matthey, and also on Facebook.  My travel mysteries are on Virtualbookworm, Amazon, Barnes & Noble, Smashwords, and iTunes, as well as various independent online book sellers.


Bluette Matthey is a third generation Swiss American and an avid lover of European cultures. She has decades of travel and writing experience. She is a keen reader of mysteries, especially those that immerse the reader in the history, inhabitants, culture, and cuisine of new places. Her passion for travel, except airports (where she keeps a mystery with her to pass the time), is shared by her husband, who owned a tour outfitter business in Europe. Bluette particularly loves to explore regions that are not on the "15 days in Europe" itineraries. She also enjoys little-known discoveries, such as the London Walks, in well-known areas. She firmly believes that walking and hiking bring her closer to the real life of any locale. Bluette maintains a list of hikes and pilgrimages throughout Europe for future exploration. She lives in Charlotte, North Carolina, with her husband, faithful dog, and band of loving cats. You can visit Bluette’s website at www.bluettematthey.com For More Information