Thursday, September 29, 2011

Who Said the Life of an Art Collector Had to Be Dull?

Paloma Zubiondo is safe and secure in the world she has designed for herself. Paloma's life in her beach-front home in Laguna Beach, California is well-ordered and full of discipline, while her rooms are decorated with rare artistic treasures (of the Spanish Colonial variety) and books, a collection she has been working to build for years. For this wealthy widow and aficionado of fine art, everything is in its right place. Then, one day the telephone rings, and everything changes...
...The caller's contention that in Paloma's collection there exists a stolen work of art, the Immaculate Conception, seems completely preposterous to her. Even more frightening is the story that unfolds after that call. The caller, who claims to be the rightful heir to the original painter of the stolen piece, Quito artist Isabel Santiago (a real 17th century historical figure) demands that the painting be returned in exchange for the release of a sex-slave who, as the claim goes, has a strong link to Paloma's childhood. For Paloma, this realization is initially too much to bear, but eventually she can no longer fight the strain of a truth that is being forced into her life by pressures beyond her control. It is a truth that may very well unravel her world, but the mission for her becomes clear. Out of her own beautiful environment and thrust into a harsh reality of con artists, thieves, and sex-slave trafficking, Paloma must enlist the aid of her childhood friend, Jen, a psychologist and social activist,, in order to combat a powerful foe named Montserrat and unearth the hidden connections between the art she treasures and a sinister world of atrocities and exploitation. The journey will be long and eye-opening for Paloma, but tremendously exciting for any reader who has the pleasure of picking up Gathering the Indigo Maidens, the new novel in which her adventure is contained.
Gathering the Indigo Maidens is a powerful and provocative book, ripe with symbolism and engaging to the last page. The author of this work, Cecilia Velastegui, has had her fair share of experiences around the world and has much to show for it. In fact, she was raised in California and France and has traveled extensively in 50 countries. Velastegui speaks four languages and has served on the board of directors for several cultural and educational institutions. She currently resides with her family in Monarch Beach, California.
Of course, this unique life-experience is evident in her writing, which blends the symbolism so characteristic of the art world with a historical accuracy that is quite remarkable. The story of Paloma is fresh and well-crafted and should appeal to readers of intelligent suspense with a historical basis. Also, lovers of art-oriented fiction will appreciate all that Velastegui has to offer with Gathering the Indigo Maidens. For additional information about the author or the book, check the following link:

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