Romance And Revenge In New Book From Chris Bohjalian
Vermont author Chris Bohjalian has turned to historical fiction for his new novel, The Light in the Ruins.
The book begins in 1943. The Rosatis, a family of Italian nobles living in Tuscany, believe their ancient villa will keep them safe from the ravages of war. But the arrival of the Nazis turns their sanctuary into a prison.
Twelve years later, members of the Rosati family are being targeted by a serial killer, who cuts out their hearts and leaves them at the murder scene.
A young investigator with her own scars from the war is assigned to the case.
The Light In The Ruins alternates between the two time periods to tell a story of love and revenge, set against the exquisite Italian countryside.
In this interview with VPR's Neal Charnoff, Bohjalian says he was inspired by a production of "West Side Story". He realized he would like to write a modern day story of doomed romance, a la "Romeo And Juliet".
Inspiration for the setting came when he was biking in Tuscany, not having associated the exquisite countryside with Nazi occupation.
Bohjalian also says his weekly column, "Idyll Banter", acts as a personal journal, and gives him relief from the darker themes of his novels.
The Light In The Ruins will go on sale Tuesday, July 9th. Bohjalian will be appearing at the Fletcher Free Library in Burlington, Monday evening at 7.