I wanted to highlight Italian American culture in Rosalie’s story because it is a big part of her story. She comes from a tight-knit Italian American community. As a proud Italian American, I wanted to highlight the value of family, and the respect that is held for elders, and in some small circles the reverence that is still held for the Catholic church. Rosalie is very much a product of her culture and upbringing, in a beautiful culture that is also toxic. The story shows how she is very much a product of her environment.
There are beautiful scenes in this book of celebration of family and food. Traditions are celebrated in the book in a truthful way. It was special to me to share my culture and the beauty of it and the not so pleasant things as well. As an Italian American I grew up in a culture where adults were the law, and respect for elders was never a choice, it was the law. There was also a strong reverence for the Catholic church. Celebrations were marked with food, family and laughter.
The Lake Michigan Affair will be available on April 14, 2023.