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Preview of New Romantic Fantasy/Gothic Suspense, 'The Chamber of Curiosities',

Preview of seductive new Romantic Fantasy/Gothic suspense, The Chamber of Curiosities, set in ancient carnival, now available to preview on Amazon.

 

The Chamber of Curiosities

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Top 75 Older Woman/Younger Man Romance Novels

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ATTENTION READERS: New Romantic Fantasy, The Chamber of Curiosities is now available as e-book on Amazon. Be the first to read, review, and discuss the novel, set in a carnival in an ancient land. The gothic tale  features a a sensuous older woman/ younger man romance.

In The House on Black Lake heroine Alexandra Brighton is obsessed with charismatic Ramey Sandeley, a man she met in her early thirties, who is now, as is she, in his forties. However, it is young French artist Andre Labat, a man twenty years her junior, who teaches her about the fragile nature of love and trust, and guides her to bare her darkest secrets and desires. Another character, Luna, is well into her sixties and uses her sex appeal to allure men of all ages.

It is natural for mature women to be drawn to younger men, as they provide greater reproductive prowess, progressive knowledge, and more vibrant protective mechanisms. Society finds derogatory names for women who dare enter into these unions as there is fear by older men that they will be left alone, abandoned for young bucks biting at their heals.

Following are 75 novels featuring mature woman and younger men. Many feature minor age differences. But, I am including these unions, as the romance community (many thanks to Amazon) feel representations of age and status difference are considered unique in context of their cultural history. The list is in no particular order.

Renaissance

1. Return to Night by Mary Renault - 11 years difference

2. To Please a Lady by Susan Johnson - spinster fights against being wooed to marriage

Georgian

3. Outlander by Diana Gabaldon (7/91) -- Time Travel -- Claire is older than Jamie.

4. Pleasure Me by Monica Burns - courtesan is 12 years older that 29 year old lord

Traditional Regency

5. A Promise of Spring by Mary Balogh - h is 10 years older and serious demeanor - mismatched love

6. The Ramshackle Suitor by Nancy Butler

7. The Bishop's Daughter by Susan Carroll

8. The Dower House by Carola Dunn - story of house for widows and young girl looking for new life 

10. An Immodest Proposal by Patricia Oliver - 5 years younger, less educated, charming

12. The Bumblebroth by Patricia Wynn -Widow is drawn to the man she chose to wed her daugher

Regency

13. To Wed a Viscount by Adrienne Basso - Widow sets out to marry deceased fiancee's younger brother to save house

14. Anthology: In Praise of Younger Men by Jo Beverley, Cathy Maxwell, Jaclyn Reding - stories feature mature women with younger men

15. The Stranger I Married by Sylvia Day - widow's MOC turns passionate when husband returns from exile

16.[/amazon_link]A Talent for Sin by Lavinia Kent  - three times a widow with man in early 20's

17. Suddenly You by Lisa Kleypas (6/01) -30 year old finds love with 25 year old

18. Victor by Julia Templeton -Erotica - widow is 38, hero is 10 years younger.

19. The Duchess' Lover by Julie Beard - heroine is 40, hero is in late 20's

20. Sleeping Beauty by Judith Ivory - Courtesan is 8 years older

21. Rebel Baron by Shirl Henke  -h 36 - H 30

22. Brazen by Susan Johnson - h is thirty-five with children and as experienced as younger lover

Frontier - Western - Americana

23. Tiger Lil by Ellen Archer  Victorian -

24. Summer Fancy by Anne Avery - 1895 Colorado - tall, plain women finds love with young farmer

25. The Spirit Path by Madeline Baker 1872  -Hawk 25 and Maggie 32

26. Loving Mercy by Teresa Bodwell 1860s Kansas and Colorado

27. The Randolph Legacy by Eileen Charbonneau - 1810s Virginia Post-American Revolution - 9 years difference

28. Anthology: The Invitation by Jude Deveraux 1920/1930s

29. The Rainbow Season by Lisa Gregory

30. Last Chance by Jill Marie Landis - 1894 Montana

31. Courting Miss Hattie,  Wild Oats, and Simply Jess by Pamela Morsi

32. Midnight Confessions by Candice Proctor [New Orleans, Civil War] - Widow  is 30 and 5 years older than yankee marshall, who is 25 years.

33. From Fields of Gold by Alexandra Ripley (11/94) -- 1900s-1910s - woman is nearly 30 when barely 20-year-old agrees to marry her.

34. Christmas Day Family by Cheryl St. John - (A) A Western Winter Wonderland - Marvel Anne is 33 and Dr. Seth Paxton 26.

35. The Tender Texan by Jodi Thomas -German widow needs husband to claim land in new world - offers $100 to man to marry for one year - the taker is a boyish lad, but also a seasoned gunslinger

Historical Fiction - Historical Mystery

36.  Farrier's LaneThe Charlotte and Thomas Pitt Mystery Series - Late Victorian England - Charlotte's mother, 53-55 ,meets her longtime lover, Joshua, 40, in this book.


Contemporary - Romantic Suspense

37. The Last Time I Saw Paris by Elizabeth Adler. When her surgeon husband tells her there's another woman, Lara Lewis, 40-something, decides to invite a much younger man to go with her on a trip to Paris she had planned for she and her husband as they retraced their honeymoon.

38.  Convincing Silvia By Erin Aislinn - Silvia is 46 and Andy is 35. e-book short story.

39. Night Magic by Charlotte Vale Allen ( The secondary character Kitty is 10 years older than Hal. Kitty is/was the housekeeper/nanny for Marissa and Hal is Erik's personal assistant.

40. The Man in the Black Leather Mask by Evangeline Anderson - Erotica  - Attorneys Jacqueline (Jax) Emerson and Ryan Cutler: 10 yrs difference.

41. Garden of Scandal by Jennifer Blake - Beautiful recluse Laurel Bancroft hires Alec Stanton, more than 10 years younger, intelligent, talented and passionate, to help her redesign her garden.

42. Enchanted Cottage by Linda Bleser - Liz Riley discovers an enchanted cottage where time stands still. She wakes up to find her youth restored, and her passions ignited by the owner of the cottage - a man she believes is young enough to be her son.

43. Love in Another Town by Barbara Taylor Bradford- h is 15 years older

44. Ladies' Man by Suzanne Brockmann - almost 10 year difference.

45. The Defiant Hero, Into the Night, Out of Control, Breaking Point, Trouble Shooters Series -by Suzanne Brockmann -Navy seals - multiple character story lines

46. What You Won't Do For Love by Wendy Coakley-Thompson -Disillusioned Chaney Braxton 36-years-old, meets 28-year-old "tadpole" half black, half Korean veterinarian Devin Rhym, who may be young, but he's got an old soul.

47. The Object of Love by Sharon Cullars - Interracial - Sean Logan, 21-year-old white male, and Lacey Burnham, 42-year-old black mother of his deceased, but ghostly and angry, ex-best friend, Calvin.

48. The Last True Cowboy, What the Heart Knows, Night Falls Like Silk, by Kathleen Eagle by Kathleen Eagle.

49. Bound to Please by Lilli Feisty -Erotica - Ruby Scott, event planner is 37, Mark St. Crow is 29 and plays the piano, rock star.

50. Reunion by Therese Fowler - Lue Reynolds is 9 years older than Julian Forrester.

51. Confession by Elizabeth Gage - an unhappy and betrayed wife falls for the young fiance of her only child.

53. Under the Wire by Cindy Gerard -h 10 years older than h 40s/30s. She was his first and only true love and when she left seventeen years ago, she took more than his heart.

54. The Price by Joan Johnston - Secondary Romance - she is 53, he is 35

55. Love Becomes Her by Donna Hill -  he is a basketball millionaire more than half h's age

56. Leaving Normal by Stef Ann Holm - 9 years difference - Hispanic Hero

57. Romeo and Julia by Annie Kimberlin - 10 years.

58. Fallen From Grace by Laura Leone - h is 35 and author of a medieval mystery series, H is 26 and a male prostitute.

59. Call it Paradiseby Mary Jane Lloyd - successful advertising consultant has prominent attorney,as a lover. She meets younger owner of ad agency and their attraction intensifies.

60. A Minor Indiscretion by Carole Matthews -  38-year-old wife and mother of three has an affair with a gorgeous street artist 15 years her junior

61. Tim by Colleen McCullough - Mary is a 40-something unremarkable spinster, while Tim is 25-year-old mentally retarded young man who looks like a Greek god.

62. Dancing at the Harvest Moon by K.C. McKinnon

63. A Rhythm Divine by Judy Mays - 13 years

64. She'll Never Know - by Hunter Morgan -A victim of amnesia handsome lifeguard 10 years her junior. And then the first memory flashes return.

65. Bewitched by Constance O'Day-Flannery - Successful career woman falls in love with a lawyer from turn-of-the-century America. He is younger and angry for being jettisoned a hundred years forward in time.

66. Flirting With Forty by Jane Porter - divorced mother of two vacations in Hawaii for 40th birthday. Depressed with flabby middle-aged prospects poolside, she finds herself drawn to a younger, tanned and sexy surf instructor.

67. One Summer by Karen Robards - a Kentucky school teacher takes a former student under her wing after he is paroled from prison for a crime she does not believe he committed. Their love causes tongues to wag in the small town. Suspense.

68. Family Blessings by LaVyrle Spencer - a woman answers the front door to learn her son has been killed. The person offering the news is a police officer and also her son's best friend. The young man becomes a surrogate sibling to her to other children and a friend to her. Gradually their love turns to passion and when he proposes she must confront the judgments of others.

69. Anything For Love by Janelle Taylor - Widow is 47; hero is much younger ex-football star

70. Snowfall at Willow Lake by Susan Wiggs  - veterinarian is ten years younger than international lawyer.

71. Anyone but You by Jennifer Crusie - light, funny playful - Woman turning 40 looks forward to new life away from stuffy ex husband and suburbs. New life in her own aparment in city brings the "puppy" she desires, and a gorgeous 10 yrs younger E.R. doc sends her hormones raging.

72. Meandar Scar by Lisa Lickel - woman's husband disappeared 7 years ago. A neighbor, nearly young enough to be her son, returns from law school and helps her with paper work to declare husband dead. Story follows process of loss, grieving, and the transformative power of love, as well as the hurdles a mature woman/younger man relationship can face.

73. Naked in the Rain by Debra Marhowitz -43 year old woman picks up 23 year old stud in bar and takes him home for the night. They become fast friends and she provides him motivation and direction while he helps her come to terms with ghosts of past. Sexy, omance, suspense, pathos.

Alternate World - Science Fiction - Fantasy - Futuristic - Vampire - Paranormal

71. Primary Inversion by Catherine Asaro

72. Ritual of Proof by Dara Joy

73. Alternate World  - by Susan Grant

75. The Object of Love by Sharon Cullars

A mature woman with a younger man is the perfect match.

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New Gothic Romance, The Chamber of Curiosities, Schedule to be Published Late 2016

A new gothic romance by Anastasia Blackwell is scheduled to be published as an e-book in November, 2016. Creative Revolution Media announced the story of star-crossed lovers in an ancient carnival will be released as a paper-back in early 2017. Plans for sequels and a screenplay were are also in development.dfw-ab-tcoc-cover-3d-nologo copydfw-ab-tcoc-cover-proof7-2

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New Book Cover Unveiled for Romantic Fantasy "The Chamber of Curiosities"

A new book cover has been created by Design for Writers for Romantic Fantasy, The Chamber of Curiosities by Anastasia Blackwell.

The novel, set in a carnival in an ancient land, is scheduled to be published in early Spring. The story begins the night of a full blue moon when a beautiful aerialist breaks into the cage of a carnival freak, known as The Human Beast. Obsessed to see his face, she entices him to to allow her to shave him  His remarkable transformation inflames the superstitions of citizens, and sets the stage for revolution in the seaport town where they are held captive.

dfw-ab-tcoc-cover-3d-nologo copy

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Romantic Fantasy "The Chamber of Curiosities" by Anastasia Blackwell to be Published in 2015

There is a moment in time when you must have faith and relinquish fear. If you  don't you will be chained inside your cage for the rest of your life."

New novel and screenplay The Chamber of Curiosities is complete, and schedule to be published in 2015.  The romantic fantasy tells the tale of the mysterious Night of the Two Blue Moons when  beautiful young aerial artist, Clare Dupree steals a razor and breaks into the cage of circus freak, Darné Veskka, billed as "The Human Beast". Her quest is to seduce the giant into allowing her to shave off his beard, so that she can see his face. The charismatic young giant, who has never been touched by a woman, seizes the weapon and turns it against her, but she ultimately entices him to submit to her obsession.  His act of faith unleashes untapped powers, enflames the superstitions of  the citizens, and sets the stage for revolution in the ancient seaport town of Tressaria, where they are held captive.

The Chamber of Curiosities brings to life the erotic, brutal world of a carnival staged in a fortress overlooking a land tainted by greed and political corruption.The story is narrated by the  dutiful wife of  the arrogant carnival owner who shares the unfolding saga of Darné and Clare, her own obsession with a performance trainer covered with tattoos of his adventures, and the other provocative and profane characters caught up in their struggle for freedom. The convergent story lines take the reader on a tumultuous ride through a seductive ancient world that culminates in a revolutionary act on the night of the carnival Extravaganza, and a revelatory ending.

The novel has a unique bonus to its plot, as Anastasia Blackwell was invited to join such luminaries as Stephen King and Nora Roberts in a First Amendment Project fund raising project that allowed readers to bid on the opportunity to have their name included in a future novel.  The women who successfully bid to be included in “The Chamber of Curiosities” became a pivitol character in the protagonist’s journey.  

ANASTASIA BLACKWELL ON  IMDB   

THE HOUSE ON BLACK LAKE  

 

 

 

 

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A Woman on the Wildside - A Dance of Fate in Argentina

'He made me comfortable in a manner usually signifying eminent intimacy.  Sometimes such people are guideposts, stationed by destiny to lead you to the next phase of your journey, or as agents of transformation.  On occasion, a stranger appears to offer a passionate night or two, a dance with danger, when traveling away from the homeland.'

Please Note:  "A Woman on the Wild Side" is a series of blogs chronicling author Anastasia Blackwell's experience traveling in Argentina, and features a mysterious young man named Tamerlane Rivera There are plans for the blogs to be compiled and and published when her adventure is complete..

Tamerlane Rivera removed his overcoat and used it to shield me from the torrential downpour.  He guided me from the Recoleta Cemetery to La Biela, a lovely restaurant on the square, known for the common presence of American actor Robert Duvall, whose movie, Tango Assassination, was filmed in Buenos Aires. The restaurant manager greeted Tamerlane as an old friend and offered a prime window table, with a view of the entrance to the cemetery and pedestrians passing beneath colorful umbrellas.  It was August, winter in Argentina, but it would soon be spring and the weather was mild

     Our conversation began formally, with mutual questions about our backgrounds. The chatter of guests and the soothing sound of rain beating against the rooftop afforded a homey intimacy.  He made me comfortable in a manner that usually signifies eminent intimacy. Sometimes such people are guideposts, stationed by destiny to lead you to the next phase in your journey, or as agents of transformation.  Occasionally, they offer a passionate night or two, a dance with danger, when traveling away from the homeland.

     “I followed the family tradition and went to law school,” he told me. “I come from a long line of attorneys and politicians. But, when I experienced first hand the corruption, in the government and courts, I was disgusted.  It is my opinion that there is no justice for the underprivileged in this land, or any other, from my experience.  Institutions are created to earn capital, create fear, and control the masses.

     He paused and looked out the window pane, streaming with rain.

     “Last night, as we stood facing the Tribunal, I saw in your eyes that you had suffered an injustice,” he said.

     “To be driven by fear is to ride in the trunk of your own car. You will never arrive at your destination,’ you told me.

     He offered an enigmatic smile and the reflection of something else.

      “Sometimes the courts will dole out a good result, often published it in the media.  It operates in the manner of a lottery or a slot machine, giving people hope and reinforcement that the system works to their benefit. But even then, the attorneys are the real winners,” he told me.

     “Do you still practice law?” I asked, and held his provocative gaze.

     “I occasionally take cases, to assist those who do not have access to a defense. But, mostly my efforts are centered on working with activists to create an underground social movement that operates both inside and outside the system. Our beliefs are rooted in the sovereignty of the individual.”

     "Are you a revolutionary?” 

     “I am a Transformationalist.”

     “I’m not familiar with the ideology.”

     He paused for a moment and drew a forefinger across his lower lip.

     My group organized the demonstration you attended. We provide political speakers and the trucks used to haul stage set-ups, video and audio equipment, and banners. I keep my eye on the spectators to make certain the crowd remains in control and the police are kept at bay. That’s how I found you, although you would not be hard to miss at any vantage point.” 

     I blushed at the compliment, though not entirely convinced his beguiling manner wasn’t universally administered, as heir to the machismo porteño culture.

     “I presumed your appearance was more than serendipity,” I said.

     “What path led you there?”

     “I asked the ticket seller at the train station what stop to take to arrive at Arenales and Suipacha. He told me to get out at the Tribunals exit.”

     “Then it was fate.”

     “How so?”

     “You got off at the wrong stop.”

     Our waiter, who moved like an invisible puppeteer guiding him by strings, arrived with a silver platter of steaming coffee and dulche de leche dessert, a delicious Argentinean favorite. Tamerlane switched to his native Spanish tongue and engaged the man in a banter that accented the deep melodic tone of his voice.

     A melancholy drifted over me as the pouring rain beat the window, obscuring our view. The world dissolved into a blur, leaving only the security of the present. As he spoke with the waiter I admired his impressive physical attributes.

     He had intense, soulful brown eyes, a strong jaw with a faint cleft in the chin, full lips, and luxurious dark wavy hair grazing to his shirt collar, an expressive chest straining against cotton, long legs, and muscular thighs. His high cheek bones would have made him near model perfect, were it not for the horizontal scar below his left eye socket. I wasn’t certain of his age, although he was clearly younger.  Yet, he hadn’t flinched when I told him my boys were grown.  Tamerlane reclined in his chair, raised his cup of café con leche to his lips, and observed me with curiosity, as the waiter departed.  His skin held tawny color, yet was translucent, naked, like still water - tranquil, yet teaming with life. He was clearly a man who had never experienced rejection or failure.  His eyes held keen intelligence, a radar that searched for subtext and anticipated the next move. Deeply complex and masculine, there was a hint of vulnerability lurking beneath that charged him with the illusive aura of charisma. 

     “Is your family buried there?” I asked him, looking out the smeared window toward the gates of the Recoleta Cemetery.

     “Yes.  They lie next to the murderous general.”

     “Is there no other choice of destiny?”

      “Perhaps,” he said softly, and I saw the first crack in his resolve.

     I shifted my gaze to a painting on the paneled wall of a beautiful couple dancing the tango. The raven haired beauty wore a low cut red dress, slit to thigh, and a shapely long leg was wrapped around the leg of her sultry partner. They were either drunk on love or Malbec wine, and their infatuation was tantalizing.

     “Would you like to learn to dance the tango?”  He asked, and broke into a grin that revealed an enviable set of teeth

     “I’ve heard it’s very complicated,” I answered and cut into my dessert, oozing with warm caramel and chocolate.

      For the man it’s complex.  A woman only needs to learn a few moves. The man controls the dance and the woman follows his lead.”

     “It seems women will never break free from that blue print,” I said, with a dash of playfulness cutting through my sarcasm.

     “It takes discipline to understand how to get into the head of your partner, to learn how he thinks, to understand his weaknesses and strengths, while introducing your own spice and personality.  Done properly it transcends the partners and alters the essence of the dance,” he said.

     “I’m not good at following. I like to be in control,” I said, and met his gaze dead on.

     “To be in control is to be out of touch with your instincts,” he said, and I thought he might take my hand - but instead he motioned for the waiter.

     “I call Tango the Dance of Fate.  The man defines the nature of the journey and the woman uses instinct to follow him, while introducing her own stylistic accent.  At some point in the dance, the woman begins to influence the instincts of the man, and the dance takes on a life of its own.”

      “As the couple falls in sync, they inspire each other to create moves neither would have never imagined, if left to their own volition. Art is created when that happens, and sometimes the passion bleeds into the bedroom.  But not always,” he said with a seductive flicker of his eyes.

     “I have experienced what you describe as an actress working with a highly skilled partner. It’s what drives my passion for the craft. But I view it more as a duel.”

     "Duel implies a loser, " he said

    “A duel is a game of strategy," I answered.

     He flashed a charming smile to the women seated beside us, a quartet of coifed matrons with suits buttoned to the chin, primly sipping tea and taking dainty bites of flakey empanadas, who had ceased their casual chatter to eavesdrop.

     "There is an underground club where the greatest tango dancers in the world practice for championships, away from the eyes of the gawkers and those who steal choreography. If you like, I will take you there."

     “Do you dance?” I asked, and finished my espresso,down to the last drop.

     “I used to compete – when I was a student at the university. Now, I enjoy it for recreation.”

     “In that case, perhaps you can recommend a studio for me to learn a few basic steps before you introduce me to the dance floor.”

     “The rain has stopped.  Let me walk you back to your hotel,” he said. “It will be dark soon.”

 TO BE CONTINUED . . .

 

 

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A Woman on the Wildside - Sex and the Cemetery in Argentina

"The place was tranquil, in a disturbing way, beautiful in a gothic manner of opulent splendor, a facade for darker stories - a ghost town in the literal sense."

NOTE:  A Woman on the Wildside is a series of blogs currently being written by Anastasia Blackwell, chronicling her experience as a single woman traveling in Argentina, with the purpose of publishing the complete series.

"I imagined a late night tryst beneath a full moon, bare skin against cold stone, alive in the shadows of death, a delicious shock of electricity riding spine to heart, and the drive to create new life”.  

     I strode down bustling Avenida Alvear, past the Cathedral with  open door confessionals and prayer stalls lined with candles.  The sweet smells that wafted from the bakeries and candy shops filled my senses with delight, and. I ached to stop and try the fine leather boots and jackets in the windows of upscale boutiques, but I was running late.

     Tamerlane Rivera appeared as I made my way past Our Lady of Pilar Church to the entrance of the Recoleta Cemetery, its stone façade in stark contrast to the swirl of white clouds floating, adrift in a sea of blue. He wore a black cashmere coat over a white collared shirt open at the neck, and dark wash jeans.  His embrace was firm and confident, affording a kiss to my cheek that left a trace of musk and spice.

     At the finale of the demonstration at the Tribunal he had offered an invitation to show me the sights of Buenos Aires. I had agreed, despite numerous warnings that a single woman must be cautious when traveling in Argentina. I did not regret the decision, as his beguiling good looks had the same affect in the harsh light of day as the romantic warm hue of moonlight..

     “I grew up in the barrio of Recoleta, on the street that houses many of the embassies.  Most of the wealth in Argentina is held by the people who live within the district.”

     He guided me past a vendor cooking glazed walnuts, through neo classical gates and Doric columns into one the most famous cemeteries in the world. Inside the walled gates was a city of extravagant mausoleums that housed the remains of wealthy, famous, and infamous Argentinean citizens.   

     “Most locals born to the neighborhood are baptized in the church, educated, build careers, get married, raise children, retire, and move to the exclusive city of the dead, when they pass on.  It is expensive real estate and there are no simple stones, the kind used to mark the remains of common people.”

     “No Exit,” I remarked.

     “I’m sorry?”

     “Your description reminded me of an existential Jean Paul Sartre play.”

     “He is one of my favorite philosophers,” he said.

     “Mine too,” I said, in half earnest, distracted, by the vast array of artistry used to render the essence of a human life.

     The place was tranquil, in a disturbing way, beautiful in a gothic manner of opulent splendor, a façade for darker stories - a ghost town in the literal sense.   

     The elaborate marble mausoleums were decorated with statues in a wide range of architectural styles, tightly attached, like miniature houses, decorated with sophistocated sculptures, art, and photographs. 

     A strong French influence was apparent, but pyrmids, Egyptian motifs and Masonry symbols added an eclectic flair. Laid out like city blocks, the main walkways lined with trees led to narrow streets meandering for what seemed like miles.  There were thousands of homes, and many offered clear views inside doors and windows, of elaborate, wood caskets adorned with precious metals.

     The most touching was the crypt of a young woman who had mistakenly been buried alive, and then died of fright when she awakened. She had been reburied behind glass, in case she reawakened a second time.

     “Eva Peron is buried further down this walkway,” he said, and led me along a narrow path to an elegant crypt lined with flowers and notes from her fans.”      “She would have been forgotten beneath a slab in the country had she not used her beauty and eloquence to reform the country. “

     “I read she was embalmed by her husband.” I said..

     “Yes, and was stolen by thieves after he died.  She was held as the property of his widow for a period of time.”

     "A woman’s worst nightmare,” I said..

     “Beauty and power exact a price,” he remarked, with a warm smile.

     Evita rose from poverty to become an international icon for her rhetoric, personal style, and tireless work on behalf of women and the poor.  A victim of uterine cancer, she lost her life to what created life and defined her as a woman. 

     “Is her husband, Juan, buried beside her?” I asked.

     “Her family would not let Peron lie beside her since he remarried after her death.  The crypt next door is for sale for $500,000.  Money buys position.”

     “It’s heartbreaking that she lies here alone, a spectacle to tourists, with a plot ‘for lease’ next to her, when her passion and commitment to her husband and her country were unconditional.”

     “Legacy is all that matters.”

     We passed the statue of a warrior on horseback. ”This famous general was revered for his slaughter of the local natives. A monument to genocide,” he said.

     Tamerlane paused before a broken-down crypt, with glass shattered and laced cobwebs. The dusty coffins inside could be clearly seen and a top was slightly ajar, which made the scene even more macabre.

      A high pitched cry came from inside the crypt and the wrought iron door began to open. I gasped and I jumped back, nearly into Tamerlane’s arms.

     “It’s a feline not a ghost,” he reassured me, while barely stifling his amusement.  “Cats are brought here to live when their masters are laid to rest. They keep the rodents at bay.”

     A tabby cat stepped outside and sauntered leisurely down the street to the next abandoned home.

      When a citizen dies their surviving family members are required to pay the caretakers to keep up the property.  If their relatives fall into hard times or lose interest in their old relatives, the deceased are left to the ravages of nature.”

     “Foreclosure in the cemetery,” I replied.

     A dark shadow passed overhead and the sultry scent of the aquatic permeated the air.  A shroud of black clouds threatened to flood the streets of the departed.

      Tamerlane turned to me with a mysterious smile.  His gaze lowered to my lips, my heart began to race, and for a brief moment I was lost to fantasy.  I imagined a late night tryst beneath a full moon, bare skin against cold stone, alive in the shadows of death, a delicious shock of electricity riding spine to heart, and the drive to create new life”.

     “There is no escaping Capitalism if you choose to lie with him,” he remarked, and looked deeper into my eyes as though to capture the image of forbidden love I had conjured.

     “Who owns your soul?” I asked, in a shallow voice. 

     “My soul is not for the taking,” he replied.

     “Does that mean it’s not been given?”

     “It means it has not been bought.”

     The heavy clouds began to give way to a torrential downfall.

     “Come, let’s find shelter,” he said, and took my arm to lead me outside the walls of the city of the dead.

Recoleta Cemetery

 

Recoleta Cemetary
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A Woman on the Wildside - A Taste of Freedom in Argentina

Author Anastasia Blackwell joins protesters in front of Tribunal in Buenos Aires, Argentina.

" I to be rocked to the soul by a passion I couldn't control, an obsessive,  unquenchable desire that burned through the night, blazed shadows against the stars,  and brought new meaning to a world gone stale.  Purpose."

Please Note:  "A Woman on the Wild side" is a blog written by Anastasia Blackwell chronicling her journey in Argentina, featuring a mysterious young man named Tamerlane Rivera.  The series will be published upon completion.

A Rebel is Born

America 1776 - a new constitution affords "men" their God given divine right to life, liberty and the pursuit of  happiness.

America 2013 - "The divine right to life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness  will never hold up in court,"  a prominent attorney told me.  "Courts are created for attorneys to make  a living and justice is for those who can pay for it."

"An injustice to one citizen is a blow to us all," I protested.

He nodded with a patronizing mile.

     'Art is a powerful means of expressing social, political and emotional discontent, and rebellion is often best clothed in subtext.  But sometimes you have to speak your mind, and not give a damn about the consequences', I wrote in my journal.

To that end, I took action.

In a serendipitous moment, alone on the Buenos Aires streets while visiting my son studying abroad in Argentina,  I came upon a political demonstration.  The passion and vigor of the congregated masses transformed the air with the thrill of  possibility.  The  throng  took me deep into their folds and moved me, like the undertow of a current,  to face an imposing judicial building.  Beneath the colorful flags of the demonstrators and the brightly lit Tribunal voices elevated by loud speakers exposed truths, both esoteric and unspeakable.

They cried out against a government that had lost touch with the needs and desires of its citizens. They spoke of  inflation, political corruption, unjust courts,  and greedy banks, and even darker, of  torture, underground justice, and stolen and murdered children.  It was a triumphant showdown of man against institution, beneath an enraptured sky.

The speeches of men and women of all ages and ethnicities echoed through the night, as tears were shed  and a torrent of human emotions swelled up and filled our hearts.  Light flooded from the windows of the stoic building, held strong by its columns,  unmoving, defiant, secure in its weight and position, as the police closed in.

We stood before the Goliath building, a glorious sea of humanity,  together in our purpose to fight for our God given rights  - the promise of Democracy.

A man positioned himself next to me - tall, powerfully built, dressed in a pea coat and jeans, with golden skin and lush dark hair spilling to his collar, topped by a black fedora displaying a gold crescent pin.  He bestowed warm brown eyes and a smile, his teeth glimmering white beneath the bloated moon.  His Spanish baritone resonated like a caress.

"You are an American?" he asked.

"How did you know?"

"We cannot allow government institutions  rule us through fear,"   he stated simply.

The night had grown cold with the passing clouds, and I folded my arms and drew my coat tight, while  searching his intense eyes.  Lost there, I saw something of myself reflected back, a part of me I had not known existed until that moment - and something profound began to awaken.  Flags waved the image of revolutionary Che Guevara and patriotic music stirred the citizens to near riot.

"I am a single mother.  How can I stand up against a powerful male patriarchal system?  The American constitution was meant to be democratic, but it was forged by founding fathers, not mothers."

“Your founding fathers fought a similar battle, only as the bastard children of a strict and unyielding father across the Atlantic. You can accept their remedy or choose your own.  There are many ways to revolt and many ways to achieve your goals once you set them,” he said, with a charming smile.

"Are you a revolutionary?"

"A transformationalist."

"I'm not familiar with the ideology."

"My name is Tamerlane Rivera.  Welcome to my country," he said, and he offered his hand.

The crowd roared, canons fired, and a zealous, chaotic energy infused the square that was intoxicating, exhilarating.  Yet, it wasn't enough - I wanted more.

I wanted to be rocked to the soul by a passion I couldn't control, taken to the furthest edge of mind and body,  by an obsessive, unquenchable desire that burned through the night, blazed shadows against the stars and brought new meaning to a world gone stale.  Purpose.

journey shifted in the moment, my perception of reality altered, like awakening to a winter morning with  a freshly fallen blanket of snow, pristine, untouched, ready for the weight of the first footsteps to bring life  a hidden landscape ready for the taste of something new.

Challenging the Tribunal

Anastasia Blackwell

9-16-2013

 

 

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Anastasia Blackwell Interview on Trap of Women Who Marry for Money

In a recent interview at the Ashland Shakespeare Festival in Oregon I was asked about the character of Ruth Sandeley, wife of wealthy Ramey Sandeley in The House on Black Lake. Here are my thoughts:

 

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Anastasia Blackwell Reveals Inspiration for Novel 'The House on Black Lake'

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