The conscience of a town steeped in sexism, vanity and hypocrisy is pricked by the brutal murder of a mysterious woman in a park in Los Angeles. But the shock is transformed into a steamy, seductive scandal when the body turns out to be that of Susan Whitaker, the flamboyant wife of the governor of California.
Soon, a dazzlingly intricate shuffle of volatile links leads the police to the delicate theory of secret lover/blackmailer, and to the indictment of Benjamin Carlton, Hollywood’s most influential black celebrity.
Then curious things begin to happen when Carlton’s ambitious girlfriend, Rita Spencer suddenly unearths the shocking secret that Susan Whitaker did not, in fact, exist. She little realizes however that her discovery of this colossal fraud is a mere curtain raiser to a chilling world of ugly skeletons dating back to the assassination of a U.S. senator in a Washington hotel sauna, skeletons connected to riveting sex scandals in high places, skeletons the FBI and political kingmakers will kill for…
1. What prompted you to write your book?
My passion for storytelling obviously. I grew up in a town steeped in tradition and storytelling and from a very young age I was enthralled by folktales. When I was a kid I used to spend the evenings listening to stories from older folks, some of which were historical sagas that really fascinated me. But I think what prompted me to start writing in general was my first literature textbook in school, which, coincidentally, was a novel set in the port city where I grew up. It was the story of a weird, one-eyed man who spent his days and nights at the harbor contriving different kinds of mischief that captivated the local population. I had seen him at the harbor a few times when I was a kid, so reading about him in the literature textbook triggered my fascination with storytelling and gave me a whole new insight into how the written word can actually capture reality.
2. What genre do you enjoy writing the most and why?
I love poetry a lot; it galvanizes me and humbles me at the same time. But as far creative writing goes, I enjoy writing thrillers the most. It’s a gritty, rousing, and fast-paced genre that helps the author simulate the reader’s moods by providing the sudden rush of excitement and exhilaration that eventually drive the narrative. What makes it enjoyable for me is that the thriller genre, by its nature, does not only spawn surprise but a high level of anticipation and ultra-heightened expectation as well.
3. What celebrity would you like to meet and why?
No one particularly if by celebrity we are limited to movie stars and musicians. But I wouldn’t mind running into Umberto Eco (author of “The Name of the Rose”) for a chat about literature.
4. What would you like your readers to know about you?
There isn’t much to know really, just what my bio says about me. Specifically though, I’d want readers to pay attention, not only to the story, but to the style as well because that, sometimes, makes a difference in literature.
5. Favorites: food, color, place, activity?
My favorite food is an Italian dish called Spaghetti alla Carbonara. My favorite color is black and my favorite place is Norway. I have more than one favorite activity, the main ones, of course, are writing and travelling, mainly to marvel at ancient architecture.
6. If you could give me one piece of advice about life, what would it be?
It’d be an Oscar Wilde quote: “Be yourself; everyone else is already taken.”
Where you can find Augustine:
Author’s website: http://goo.gl/A5jRnj
Google Plus: http://goo.gl/yruj3D
Book Trailer: https://goo.gl/wZ4F3g
Where you can find The Conspiracy of Silence:
Barnes & Noble: http://goo.gl/N6WXJ4