Today I thought it would be fun to introduce another author who loves the drama and adventure of the 1940s. Nike Chillemi writes crime fiction set after World War II, and she's answered some questions about her love for this time period.
First, a bit about Nike...
Nike Chillemi has been called a crime fictionista due to her passion for crime fiction. She is the founding board member of the Grace Awards and its Chairman, a reader's choice awards for excellence in Christian fiction. She writes book reviews for The Christian Pulse online magazine. Burning Hearts is the first book in The Sanctuary Point series, published by Desert Breeze. Goodbye Noel, the second book in the series released in December, 2011 and won the Grace Award 2011 in the Mystery/Romantic Suspense/Thriller category. Perilous Shadows, the third in the series released in July, 2012. She is a member of American Christian Fiction Writers (ACFW) and the Edgy Christian Fiction Lovers (Ning).
Nike, what drew you to write novels set in the 1940s?
I love the 1940s. The era had its own panache. There was a
kind of natural glamour and sophistication to the period that didn't seem
forced or egotistical. Ordinary women loved to dress up. The men were so
debonair. I obtained my college degree from The Fashion Institute of Technology
in NYC. I'm completely enthralled by the fashion, hair, and automobiles of the
It was also a
pivotal time for our nation. So many American soldiers had fallen in the war. America
seemed to be losing her innocence slowly but surely. Yet, in spite of great
national and personal loss, Americans had great optimism then. There was a spirit
of get up and go. I wanted to create characters who struggled with the issues
that framed the America we live in today.
What’s your favorite movie from the 1940s? Actor
or actress from the 1940s?
Interestingly enough, in my
newest release, Perilous Shadows, heroine Kiera Devane tells hero Argus Nye he
reminds her of the actor who is my favorite from the golden age of cinema…Jimmy
Stewart. That novel also has Kiera and Argus going to the movies. It's quite a
humorous scene. The movie is Road To Rio
starring Bob Hope and Bing Crosby and is a riotous film. Although Kiera and
Argus go to the flick to have a respite from the murder case they're
investigating, the scene pulls them deeper into the hunt for the killer.
I also love Jimmy Stewart and the "Road" movies! What’s the most interesting thing you learned
about this time period from researching your stories?
When researching hero Lorne
Kincade's backstory for the first novel in the series, Burning Hearts, I
learned that French resistance fighters hid in the catacombs beneath Marseilles
from the Vichy French and Nazis who had taken over France. Lorne appeared to be
a simple motorcycle courier during the war, but in fact went on secret missions
in France under the direct command of General Patton. I wrote a scene in that
novel where now stateside, Lorne awakes sweating from a nightmare in which he
and his wartime buddy race through the back alleys of Marseilles for the safety
of the catacombs. In essence, Lorne has had a flashback in a dream.
If you lived in the 1940s, what role would you
see for yourself? Rosie the Riveter, ration-point-collecting homemaker, WAAC or
WAVE, or daring spy?
I think I would have been a WAAC
or a WAVE, probably a WAVE because of my love of the ocean and the WAVEs were
Navy. These women were considered part of the US Naval Reserves. Although WAVES
only served stateside until the very end of the war when some shipped out to
Hawaii, not yet a state. I would liked to have served in communications or
intelligence. One necessary task in war time is poring through all the many
newspapers published in the US looking for articles and/or advertisements that
might be code from enemy collaborators or enemy agents. That is something I
would have been interested in doing.
That would be interesting!
"Nike Chillemi kicks off her new novel,
Perilous Shadows, with gusto and keeps the action coming." ~ Nancy Mehl, Winner
of the 2009 Carol Award for Mystery...author of Inescapable: The Kingdom
series, the Curl Up and Dye mysteries, and The Harmony series.
Pioneer newspaperwoman Kiera Devane is on a mission to prove a woman can do a man's job, as she hunts a young coed's killer? Ace radio broadcaster Argus Nye lost one love to a murderous fiend and his pulse races as he tries to protect Kiera from herself as much as from this killer.
Kiera was doted upon by loving parent, but they were killed when she was a girl and she was shipped off to live with a socialite aunt who had little time for her. In her aunt's house, she learned life could be cold and cruel. As a result, she grew up to be an independent and demanding professional woman.
Argus Nye, still bereft from the loss of his first love, can't understand why this female reporter is mesmerizing him. As she takes chances with her life trying to catch a killer, he's determined to protect her.
"Wow! Nike Chillemi knows how to set
the hook into readers right from the first page and refuses to let go. ~ Robert Liparulo, Award winning author of The 13th Tribe, Comes a Horseman, Germ, and The Dreamhouse Kings
from the start, Burning Hearts captured my imagination and tweaked my
curiosity. Nike Chillemi certainly knows how to set a scene and ignite
excitement." ~ Athol Dickson, three time Christy Award winning author of
Lost Mission and The Opposite of Art
How about you? What's your favorite aspect of the 1940s?
Labels: 1940s, author feature, Nike Chillemi, Perilous Hearts