September 10, 2015

A Song for Bellafortuna by Vincent B. "Chip" LoCoco - Review, Interview and Giveaway

I received this book from Italy Book Tours in exchange for a fair and honest review

Published: May 7, 2015
Number of pages: 284
Genre: Historical Fiction

A Song for Bellafortuna is an inspirational Italian Historical Fiction novel concerning a young man's desire to free his Sicilian village from the domination of one family's long reign.

For years, the beautiful, yet secluded, hilltop village of Bellafortuna, Sicily, was a great producer of wine and olive oil. The entire village prospered. However, after the arrival of the Vasaio family, production dwindles and the villagers soon find themselves in crushing debt to the Vasaios. Only one family in the village remains outside the control of the Vasaios, but the reason haunts Antonio Sanguinetti every day of his life. Antonio is determined to erase this legacy by offering financial and emotional support to his fellow villagers. He introduces them to the choral song from Verdi's opera, Nabucco, which becomes the rallying cry for the villagers and offers them hope for a better life.

When Antonio's only son, Giuseppe, discovers his family's past, he becomes determined to take on the Vasaios and remove them from power. Led by the young Giuseppe, a plan is hatched that could result in either complete freedom for the villagers, or if it fails, forever solidifying the Vasaios' control. Find out what happens in A Song for Bellafortuna, a sweeping epic historical fiction tale of love, drama, sacrifice, and redemption, set among the beautiful landscape of Sicily.

Where to buy the Book: Amazon

What did I think about this book:
This was the first book I read by this author and I jumped at the chance since it was historical fiction as well as it is set in Italy. This is a book with family, love, friendship, loyalty, music and history. I am glad I took the chance as I enjoyed this book from the first page. The writing style of this author just seemed to make the story flow for me. It was a book I did not want to put down. Many times while reading this book I just wished I could read faster as I could not wait to see what happened next. The author also did such a good job of describing the scenes that I felt as if I was on a trip to Sicily, which by the way is a dream of mine.There were also times that I really felt for the people of the town and what they were going through. He also used a lot of Italian in this book so you feel as if you are learning while being entertained. The characters were all great but it was it was fun to watch Giuseppe grow in so many ways. I have not been a big fan of opera before but after reading this book I have a new appreciation for it. This is not only a work of fiction but it is a motivational story as well. You can tell this author put his heart into his writing. I can't wait to read more by this author. This book can be read by teens as well as adults as it is a nice clean read. 

About the author:
Award winning and bestselling author, Vincent B. "Chip" LoCoco, lives in New Orleans. His first novel, Tempesta's Dream - A Story of Love, Friendship and Opera, became an Amazon bestselling novel and was awarded the 2014 Pinnacle Achievement Award in Historical Fiction. Amazon also has named his book as a Top Rated Novel in Italian Historical Fiction.

His most recent novel, A Song for Bellafortuna, was shortlisted in the William Faulkner - William Wisdom Competition. He is an estate planning attorney in New Orleans, where he lives with his wife and two children.

Connect with the author: Website Twitter Facebook

1. Who or what inspired you to start writing?
I never imagined I could write a novel. I grew up loving the Lord of the Rings, and loved to read. But becoming a writer was the furthest thing from my mind. Then one night, I stayed up with my very young son, and when I read to bed, a story burst into my brain. I stayed up all night outlining the story and the rest, as they say, is history.

2. What do you do to help you get over writer's block?
I am blessed to live in New Orleans which of course contains the glorious French Quarter. When I am stumped, I usually find time to make my way down there and walk around the Quarter, There is something magical about the place. Perhaps it’s the ghosts of so many writers who came before, that indeed you do get inspired. I then find a patio in a coffee shop, sit down and began to write.

3. Do you have scheduled writing time or a certain amount of words you write each day?
I do not have a schedule. For me, the most important thing is just being in the right frame of mind. I am an attorney, so sometimes your mind is awash with legal matters, and writing fiction becomes quite a task. However, on the flip side, writing does provide a wonderful escape from the routine of your life.

4. Where do you get your ideas for your books?
At least in the two novels I have written so far, my ideas come to me first in the inspiration of the main character. From there, the story develops. Thus, I usually have the protagonist as a person I envy and root for. I do find it amazing how some author’s can write stories about main characters who are bad guys. I give them kudos for doing so. I would have a hard time doing so.

5. When you are not writing what do you like to do?
That is such a hard question. I am a Sicilian American. Thus, I have a passion for many things. I have two children and love spending time with them in our pool. I love opera, and love listening to opera recordings, or going to the opera. My wife hates opera and her rule is she will go to an opera only if I take her to see it in another city, like New York, Philly, Santa Fe, etc. And I love my New Orleans Saints.

6. What one piece of advice would you like to give to aspiring writers?
Write from the heart. Don’t worry about formula writing. Say what you want to say.

7. Who is your favorite author or book that you would like to recommend to your readers?
My favorite author is J. R. R. Tolkien. As for my favorite book to recommend, I love historical fiction. One of most favorite novels in the genre is a book called 27 by William Diehl. Find It and read it.

8. If you could meet any famous person dead or alive who would it be and why?
I would love to meet the Italian opera composer, Giacomo Puccini. He wrote some of the most famous opera ever written, such as La Boheme, Tosca and Madama Butterfly. I would sit in his study at Torre de Lago, near Lucca, and watch him on the piano score an opera. How great would that be?

9. If you could visit anywhere in the world where would you like to visit?
Italy. Anywhere in Italy. Enough said.

10. 5 interesting facts about yourself
I have two wonderful children, a loving, beautiful wife, and a hard headed beagle.
I went to the Saints Superbowl game in Miami – what a wonderful memory.
My family lost our house in Hurricane Katrina, but after a long road back, have rebuilt.
I played baseball in high school and college.
My favorite movie is Cinema Paradiso.

Win 1 of 5 print or kindle copies of “A Song for Bellafortuna”(open to USA & Canada)

Be sure to stop by Italy Book Tours to see all the stops on this tour

Sept 8 - Essentially Italian - book spotlight / author interview / giveaway
Sept 9 - 100 Pages a Day - review / giveaway
Sept 10 -Griperang's Bookmarks - review / author interview
Sept 11 - Il Mio Tesoro - review / guest post
Sept 14 - Library of Clean Reads - review / giveaway
Sept 15 - NorthernMSW - review / guest post
Sept 15 - Italophilia - book spotlight 
Sept 16 - Working Mommy Journal - review / giveaway
Sept 17 - Vic's Media Rook - review / author interview
Sept 17 - Cassidy Salem Reads and Writes - review / giveaway
Sept 18 - View from the Birdhouse - book spotlight / giveaway
Sept 21 - Book and Ink - review / guest post / giveaway
Sept 22 - Rockin' Book Reviews - review / guest post / giveaway
Sept 22 - - review / giveaway
Sept 23 - allthingsbookie - review / giveaway
Sept 24 - Studentessa Matta - review / giveaway
Sept 25 - The Autistic Gamer - review
TBD - Book Stop Corner - review / giveaway

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