Tuesday, April 3, 2018

"The Italian Party"

Christina Lynch’s picaresque journey includes chapters in Chicago and at Harvard, where she was an editor on the Harvard Lampoon. She was the Milan correspondent for W magazine and Women’s Wear Daily, and disappeared for four years in Tuscany. In L.A. she was on the writing staff of Unhappily Ever After; Encore, Encore; The Dead Zone and Wildfire. She now lives in the foothills of the Sierra Nevada.

Lynch is the co-author of two novels under the pen name Magnus Flyte. She teaches at College of the Sequoias.

She applied the Page 69 Test to The Italian Party, her debut novel, and reported the following:
Wow—it’s kind of crazy how well this works! Page 69 in The Italian Party is a page that might deter some readers, because it’s a Michael page (instead of a section from the point of view of his wife, Scottie) where he’s realizing how much he doesn’t understand about Italian politics, and feeling frustrated about how to even begin the mission he’s been sent to do, to throw an election. (An aside: when I started writing this novel in 2013, no one was talking about throwing elections! I’m amazed that the things I dreamed up for Michael to do are things that people who want to throw elections apparently actually do.) Page 69 is a pivotal page in Michael’s story, and sets up everything that comes later. Michael is trying to figure out how to flip a reporter who is writing negative stories about America, “ridiculing its films as treacle, its products as flimsy and its presence in Europe as imperialist.” He knows he has to get to that guy and get him to change his tune. He’s also thinking about the news that Khrushchev has just denounced Stalin: “What did it mean, the papers kept asking, and everyone had a contradictory answer. Some said it was the beginning of a loosening of Soviet control over the Eastern Bloc. Others said it was a consolidation of power in new hands. Things had begun to shift and change in ways that Michael found unnerving. It felt to him like the entire world was having a migraine.” Michael’s Cold War anxiety is growing, and then at the bottom of the page he gets even more bad news, that the Communist mayor of Siena is predicted to win reelection. That fact is a low point in his story that drives him to take actions that have many repercussions…
Visit Christina Lynch's website.

My Book, The Movie: The Italian Party.

--Marshal Zeringue