A House Near Luccoli is an Audiobook!

A House Near Luccoli with G ClefForgive me for another promotion of my novel, but I am excited because …

A House Near Luccoli is now available as an Audiobook!

Thank you to my publishers, All Things That Matter Press!

Click here to listen to a sample from the first chapter:

 April 1681


She didn’t fuss with her hair or use the vain clutter of the dressing table except to waste time rearranging it. Eventually she turned to what was behind her. Laid over a small unmade bed and the chair beside it were two fancy gowns, creased and dated, suiting a younger shape and needing somewhere to go. She was sure she wouldn’t wear them again.

“Donatella? Are you in your room?”

The lace might be salvaged, for she couldn’t be without lace, at least around her neck and, at most, edging her sleeves as well. Otherwise she dressed serviceably, invisibly, in gray or dark blue.

She no longer thought of being bolder or more submissive or, in a city on a bay-becoming-the-sea, swept away at last.

It was as if someone else recalled a ship, who sailed on it, and walking down a shady alley with a stranger. There was always the temptation of mixing imagination with reality, especially as the past was otherwise inalterable. Her reflection was plain in the mirror, her hair quickly pinned, her face flushed.

“Donatella, I need you!”

She moved to a corner table, begging light from a narrow window, cleaning brushes and closing colors yet to finish curled pictures of spring or begin the next season before it did. She had painted in brighter places, dreamed in them, too, and didn’t care who saw her as a dreamer, until she committed herself to being withdrawn and forgotten like a lunatic huddled in a corner, hardly knowing the difference between a smile and a frown.

“You might answer me!”

She took the green dress off the bed and pretended to wear it for a small stroll around the room. Then she walked into the hall as if out into the city; her city, at least, as it was also born of land and sea, formed by highs and lows, ruled by outer constraint and inner abandon, safe and sorry in disguise. Of course Genova had a conceit she couldn’t have, knowing its purpose and hiding or flaunting its features of beauty. Once she saw all its wonders and woes from the esplanade of Castelletto, the mountains closer and the Lanterna further away. Perhaps she made out her house; if not its signature portal of Saint George and the Dragon, then a signifying shine on its roof’s slant. It was a prestigious place to live depending on how she looked at it, whether connected up to a parade of palaces, across divides or down crooked stairways to the port. She was patron and prisoner of a gated entrance and more rooms than the closeness of the surrounding dwellings allowed, aspiring staircases growing them similarly into multiple stories. She could have done without so much unused furniture, mirrors, and silver to be cleaned but was greedily accustomed to a tenanted wealth of paintings, tapestries, frescos, and stained glass not created for outside views.

“There you are. What are you doing?”

Donatella had barely reached the doorway of her bedroom, throwing the dress in, not caring where it landed.

“Oh, it’s so sudden.”

Her aunt gave her a key and feather duster for gentler work than Nubesta carrying broom and bucket, hastening an end to the long vacancy of the third floor apartment, a little unnerving to step into its past. It offered another chore for the young maid complaining about wiping tall windows while Donatella removed furniture covers and thought of her mother sitting there, writing more letters than she ever received. The girl opened a window and the room to the street below, a rag-waving hand jumping out. “Up here! Up here!”

Donatella felt a shiver that shouldn’t have surprised her, the bumping and cursing of the movers fading into music and poetry from La forza dell’amor paterno as performed at the Teatro Falcone on Christmas Monday 1678. She had worn the green dress, agreeing to excessive curls and anticipation, Nonna encouraging her to fan away smoke from the chandeliers and smile although her shoes pinched. After the first act the sonnets fell from garlanded boxes for those luck enough to catch them; as much enthusiasm when the opera was finished.

Thank you to all who have read the novel, to those who have offered reviews (more are always welcome), and to any who – hopefully – are considering a read … or listen!

The 1st draft of the sequel is getting closer to completion!

I appreciate your support and love your feedback.

donatellasmallest©Artwork and writing, unless otherwise indicated, are the property of Diane M Denton. Please request permission to reproduce or post elsewhere with a link back to bardessdmdenton. Thank you.

22 thoughts on “A House Near Luccoli is an Audiobook!

    • Thank you, Barbara! At first it was strange to hear someone reading it outloud, but I have listened to the whole audio now and she does a great job – especially captures the seduction in the scenes between Alessandro and Donatella, and reads the descriptive passages beautifully, too. I have been working on the sequel today – on the last chapters of the first draft; then any rewriting and editing before it goes to my publisher and professional editor. Thanks for you encouragement and support. XO ♥


    • Hi, Ellen. Thank you so much. I am glad you liked the reading (it is certainly a very new experience for me to hear someone else reading my work … ) and that line about lace – it is one that came to me early on in the writing of the novel. Blessings. XO


  1. Diane, I enjoyed the reading very much. It is very easy to listen to. And so very well done for getting the book on audio, so many achievements!!

    And absolutely no forgiveness needed! This lovely book deserves all the promotion it can get.!! ❤ Xxxx


    • Hi, Christine. I am glad you liked the reading sample. I certainly didn’t make it easy for a narrator when it comes to the dialogue when there are a few speaking. My mom and I have listened to about half of it now, and are very impressed with how she reads my lengthly descriptive passages – I think she must read poetry outloud, or perhaps writes it herself. Also, she really gets the seductive quality of the scenes between Alessandro and Donatella.

      XO ♥


  2. Diane, so very well done and lots of back pats for you. Enjoy this wonderful achievement. Pants over tights and flick that cape…Xxx


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