Sunday, January 25, 2015

Traci Andrighetti Takes Over with a Giveaway!

Traci Andrighetti Takes Over Cozy Up With Kathy



PROSECCO PINK, the second novel in the Franki Amato mysteries, was inspired by my third visit to Oak Alley Plantation, a stunning, oak tree–lined antebellum sugar cane plantation built in 1839. Of course, I couldn’t use the real place for my setting, so I came up with my own plantation called Oleander Place and altered or borrowed intact some historical artifacts from Oak Alley. Below are a few of my favorite items from the plantation along with clues about how I incorporate them into my mystery.

THE LAVENDER ROOM
The lavender room belonged to Oak Alley’s last owner, Josephine Stewart. Its lavender d├ęcor, the antique furniture, and the persistent sightings of Josephine’s ghost make it spectacularly creepy. The minute I stepped into this room, I began to envision my “pink room”—and the beautiful blonde cosmetics CEO who would die there—all while sipping a mint julep. Evil, I know.

THE PINEAPPLE
This spiny fruit is, ironically, a time-honored symbol of Southern hospitality. Guests who stayed at Oak Alley were treated to sliced pineapple for breakfast the morning after their arrival. But those who overstayed their welcome awakened to find a whole pineapple at the foot of their beds. Kind of threatening, isn’t it? Well, that’s what Franki Amato thought, too.

THE COURTER’S CANDLE
Suitors who came to call on the plantation owner’s daughters were monitored not only by a chaperone, but also by a courter’s candle. This candle was placed inside a metal spiral. When the candle burned down to the top of the spiral, it was time for the suitor to leave. If he was a desirable match, the candle was set high so that it would take longer to burn down to the metal. But if he wasn’t, then it was set low so that his time would be up—and quickly. Talk about a way to scare someone off!

THE ROLLING PIN
Mattresses at Oak Alley were stuffed with Spanish moss, so they became lumpy after use. Each day the house slaves had to use giant rolling pins to roll the mattresses to make them smooth again. The perfect weapon to hit someone with.

THE SUGAR KETTLES
In the 18th and 19th centuries, four sugar kettles were used in the production of refined sugar (in order of decreasing size): the grande, the flambeau, the sirop, and the batterie. As the sugar cane juice boiled down, slaves transferred it to the smaller kettles in stages. This was extremely dangerous work because it involved fire and boiling liquid. And because the larger kettles were big enough to hold a body.

Curious? I hope so! I had a blast writing PROSECCO PINK, so I think you’ll have fun reading it. As they say in New Orleans, laissez les bons temps rouler!

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31 comments:

  1. I would love to read your new book!

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  2. Your new book has inspired a few "I want tos" for me:
    I want to read your new book Prosecco Pink (and your first Franki, too)
    I want to visit Oak Alley Plantation
    I want to win the Kate Spade wallet in Rio Pink
    I want to incorporate more pink in my life-clothing and accessories, home accents
    I want to try Prosecco

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    1. Oak Alley is really spectacular. It's one of the best plantations, in my opinion. But watch out for those mint juleps. It's seriously just a big glass of bourbon with some mint and simple syrup. I think it's the real reason Southern Belles were always fainting, not their corsets.

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  3. What a fascinating post. I might have to try that pineapple at the foot of the bed thing with guests!
    Thanks for the giveaway!
    sallycootie@gmail.com

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    1. LOL. I LOVE the pineapple idea. I think they should serve it crushed!

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  4. This was an interesting blog. Thank you for a beautiful giveaway and I was so happy I did the items as I thought I was signed up for your newsletter and wasn't so now I am

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    1. YAY! I only send out newsletters when I have something to announce, so I promise you won't get tired of me. :)

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  5. What a great giveaway! Look forward to reading this series.
    rjprazak6@gmail.com

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    1. I know! I can't wait to see who wins the wallet.

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  6. I love your post about Oak Alley Plantation, The history makes me want to visit it. I also love your Franki Amato series, I already read Lemoncello Yellow and can't wait for more Franki stories :)
    Thanks for the cool contest :)
    Mindy :)
    Birdsooong@comcast.net

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    1. It's a really cool place. You can actually stay in cabins on the grounds now. One day I'll do that.

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  7. I would Love to start reading your books they look really good and not too scary I don't do scary

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    1. Thanks, Linda. Yeah, I don't do scary either. I like funny.

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  8. I find your choice of book titles enticing. Thanks for the great chance to get familiar with your books.

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    1. Thanks, Robin. At first I wasn't sure whether people would like my titles, but they seem to be really catching on!

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    1. Thanks! Oak Alley is an interesting place. I'm glad I went back with my friends. Otherwise, I'm not sure I would have set Prosecco Pink at a plantation.

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  10. What a fun post - I love hearing more about how the different elements of a book come together!

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    1. Me too, Brooke. I'm going back to New Orleans in March to pick out the locations for Amaretto Amber. I can't wait!

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  11. Congrats on the new book Traci! I thought the info about pineapples was interesting--have seen them in old decor pieces, but didn't know any story about them.

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    1. It's neat, isn't it? The tour at Oak Alley is full of info like that.

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  12. Great guest post - I always like finding out more about the places that inspire an author for their book locations - I have never been to an antebellum plantation but I'll be adding Oak Alley to my vacation list - I also didn't know about the pineapple thing - that is super cool. Thanks for the great giveaway!

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    1. Thanks, Maria. It is such a neat place! And it had been in so many famous movies, soap operas and even music videos. You can't believe the list.

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  13. Thanks so much for having me on your awesome blog, Kathy! I love the image of those books on shelves in the background!

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    1. I'm so pleased to have you.Thank you so much for taking time to "talk" to everyone. Please know, that you're always welcome here at Cozy Up With Kathy!

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