One of the hardest things for a writer to write is the dreaded blurb. How does one condense several hundred pages into a few paragraphs? How to capture the essence of a complicated story, your labor of love, and compel the reader to make that purchase? The “dreaded” blurb has the power to make or break a book. If you get it wrong, if you don’t capture the reader’s attention you’re toast.
The pressure is immense, and there can be no avoidance of the task, no getting around it, and no easy way out. In many ways writing the book is easier than writing the blurb. In the actual manuscript, there’s room for error, a bit slow here, a bit underwritten there can be overcome by the next exciting passage or character interaction. The reader once committed to the book is likely to forge on and if the pace picks up the few pages not up to snuff are forgotten. Not so the blurb, where every word matters. This is your back cover and the reader will only give you a minute to win your case.
My new novel is titled The Girl Who Knew Da Vinci. It’s the first book in my Out of Time series, a romance/paranormal/time travel/thriller. My hero is a cocky art detective named Alex Caine and my heroine is Angela Renatus a Ph.D. art historian doing her internship at the Getty Museum.
My blurb, which went through numerous edits and rewrites was a daunting task, but I’m hopeful that it will entice readers. I thought I’d share it with you in hopes that you’d give me some feedback. So put on your thinking caps and let me know what you think.
My “Dreaded” Blurb
In the spirit of The Da Vinci Code by Dan Brown and Shadows of the Stone Benders by K. Patrick Donoghue, The Girl Who Knew Da Vinci by Belle Ami unravels an unforgettable mystery.
Three destinies, one remarkable painting.
Will her visions lead her to the truth?
Art historian Angela Renatus is haunted by dreams of Leonardo da Vinci and a mysterious painting of Giuliano Medici and his mistress Fioretta Gorini. A painting that, as far as the world knows, doesn’t exist. Compelled by her visions, Angela is determined to find out the truth.
When Angela is contacted by art detective, Alex Caine, she’s shocked to learn that he too is seeking the same painting. Alex’s client, a wealthy German financier, is determined to clear the name of his late uncle, Gerard Jaeger, an art historian, who went missing in Florence, during World War II. In letters written before his disappearance, the historian describes his love affair with a beautiful young Italian woman named Sophia Caro and the discovery of an extraordinary painting by the great master himself—a painting depicting Giuliano and Fioretta.
Alex and Angela journey to Florence in search of the priceless treasure. Is it a lost da Vinci, potentially worth hundreds of millions of dollars, or a wild goose chase that will only lead to a dead end? But someone else is searching for the elusive painting—Alberto Scordato is a powerful man in the art world and a sociopath who will stop at nothing to get what he wants, even murder. Scordato knows something about Angela that even she doesn’t know, something that could threaten both Angela and Alex’s lives forcing them into the crosshairs of fate.
The Girl Who Knew Da Vinci has been a breakthrough novel for me and I’m currently hard at work on The Girl Who Loved Caravaggio. It looks like the blurb worked.