See Starred Review on Kirkus Reviews
"When the secrets behind an intriguing nude portrait trickle out into the open, a photographer and her artist lover must grapple with the fallout in Sisu’s masterful debut.
Photographer Gwen Mason has just opened up her own studio in Miami and hopes to find her niche in the trendy city. Though she lives with her divorcee mother and doesn’t think she’s interested in a relationship, meeting upcoming artist Adam Straker changes all that. Adam’s paintings are causing quite a stir in the art world, and Gwen knows she’s found something special. He might be 20 years her senior, but that doesn’t stop the couple from embarking on a passionate affair. Yet one of Adam’s paintings arouses Gwen’s curiosity like no other; it’s a striking portrait of a nude woman, one Adam keeps hidden and pointedly refuses to discuss. When Adam has the chance to land a spot in a prestigious New York City gallery, Gwen believes the painting will secure his place, and she shows “The Nude” to Adam’s manager without Adam’s knowledge. Though the painting clinches the New York deal, it starts an explosive chain reaction for Adam and Gwen. In the coming weeks, decades-
An enthralling first novel.
I am honored to be in the Author Spotlight on The Xlibris Blog for my first novel, The Nude.
“Picture a chubby five year old in a hallway full of books trying to decide what she’ll read today—by herself. Picture a reedier nine-
Growing up in a book-
I went a step further and conjured up stories in my head but the past time took a back seat as my medical career advanced. Inevitably writing floated back to the surface in the last several years.
Since my mother always said—’If you’re going to do something, you might as well do it properly,’ (she was a bit prissy) — I took a year of fiction writing to learn the art of its finer nuances. Then I spent another year plodding through the first draft of my first ‘real’ novel. I feared criticism so ripped the band-
That first novel—The Nude—I self-
When I finally sucked it up, Kirkus had given it a star, calling it ‘a masterful debut. An enthralling first novel.’ Whooppee! Writer’s Digest remarked, ‘This book was extremely well-
On Her Literary Influences
“By my early teens, I was reading Toni Morrison, Archie comics, Stephen King, and poetry. My indiscriminate reading made me less genre-
Writing, however, I lean towards melodrama but I want my words and my plots to be equally strong. I admire Toni Morrison’s and Eric Jerome Dickey’s lyrical language and ability get into the heads of characters and depict what drives them; I like Carl Hiaasen’s and Terry Pratchett’s ripping tongue-
My focus, hence, may be a little muddled but I’m working to straighten that out. I wanted to learn to write like the authors I’d come to admire—Ludlum, Christie, Steele, Moseley, Morrison, Dickey, to name a few—and to my crashing disappointment, I haven’t yet learned to write like them.
Instead, I am learning to write like me.”
“The Nude is about a young photographer, Gwen, who enters into a love affair with an older, globetrotting and very talented artist Adam, until he discovers that she’s the daughter of a man he once knew—an artist whose brief spotlight was shattered by his own destructive narcissism. Gwen in turn discovers one of Adam’s works—a stunning nude—hidden away in his closet which he refuses to exhibit or even discuss. When the painting does find its way into a prestigious New York exhibit and garners international acclaim, Gwen finds out that it’s connected to secrets in her family’s past, and her digging to uncover those secrets brings down a storm on her and Adam’s heads even as those around them begin plotting their own agendas for the now famous painting.”
There’s a Part 2, which can be found here on the Xlibris Blog.