My guest today is Claire Waters, a character appearing out of the pages of California Sister by author Gloria Mattioni. I understand Claire is a little nervous, so please help me welcome her to the interview hot seat! But first, here’s a bit about the author before we get to know Claire a bit better.
Gloria Mattioni is an award-winning feature writer and the award-winning author of California Sister. She previously published Reckless – The Outrageous Lives of Nine Kick-Ass Women and Dakota Warrior. Additionally, she published in Italy a novel, Con Altri Occhi, and three non-fiction books, Guerriero Dakota, Wild Women, and La Tribù dei Mangiatori di Sogni. As soon as her new novel, California Sister, was completed, she started writing her second novel, a mystery along the lines of the books written by Claire Waters, the main character and narrator of California Sister. Growing up, Mattioni dreamed of being a pirate, an astronaut and an explorer but she was a storyteller since she learned to speak in complete sentences. She’s been, among other things, an investigative reporter, human rights activist, animal rescuer, editor and magazine writer.
She was born in Milan, Italy, but moved to Los Angeles in 1992. She still lives in California with her husband and rescue dog, conjures six impossible things every morning before breakfast, and travels much. She loves hiking in the mountains, swimming and surfing in the ocean, but also getting lost on city streets or jump in her car for impromptu road trips.
Author Social Links: Facebook | Instagram | Twitter
Betty: So, Claire, how would you describe your parents?
Betty: Who taught you to tie your shoes?
Claire: I taught myself.
Betty: Do you know how to swim? How did you learn, if so?
Claire: My father threw me in the lake from a boat with a rope tied around my waist when I was two. That’s why his father taught him how to swim. I learned. I was two.
Betty: What do you think is your greatest failure?
Claire: Not having saved my sister. Why? Because I was so sure I could!
Betty: What is the most wonderful thing that has happened to you?
Claire: My sister.
Betty: If you could change the past, what would you change?
Claire: My sister would still be healthy and alive.
Betty: What’s your greatest fear? Who else knows about it?
Claire: Sharks. Nobody.
Betty: What’s your favorite game to play?
Claire: Johnny Johnny Johnny with a knife.
Betty: Do you have a favorite sibling? Who?
Claire: Haha! Ondina. Who else??
Betty: If you could live anywhere, where would you live?
Claire: Where I do. Los Angeles.
Betty: How do you like to relax?
Claire: I never relax.
Betty: What genre of books do you most enjoy reading?
Betty: How do you like to start your day?
Claire: Hiking in the woods or on Griffith Park trails.
Betty: What kinds of friends do you have?
Claire: Few but true ones. Mainly from my younger years spent in Italy.
Betty: Who would you like to meet? Why?
Claire: The Dalai Lama. Hoping some of his wisdom would rub off on me. Alternatively, John Lennon.
California Sister is a dual-narration story of fierce love, loss and redemption. It is contemporary fiction inspired by my personal experience. An Italian-born writer who moved to Los Angeles in 1992, I had my own “California dream” suddenly interrupted the day I received a call from Italy informing me that my sister, Marina, had suffered a massive brain hemorrhage. I dropped everything and ran to her side. I ended up remaining there nearly three years, running from one hospital stay to a rehabilitation clinic, and finally taking her home with me.
I wanted to share what I learned from this heart-breaking experience to help others who struggle to communicate with family members impaired by physical or mental limitations while having to make decisions on their behalf. But I was unable to write a memoir without breaking down. I needed the distance that fiction provides to write more objectively. Fiction also allowed me to give my silent sister her voice back, getting into her head and letting her express what I felt she would have said if she could.
A sister’s love vs. a cruel fate. A story of fierce love and heartbreaking grief. Claire Waters, an Italian mystery writer living in Los Angeles, rushes to Italy after her older sister’s devastating brain-hemorrhage, determined to restore her health—or help her die with dignity. Claire is a gritty decision-maker, a lone wolf who values freedom above all else. Her sister, Ondina—now walking on the edge of death or a severely limited life—is wise, cautious, and sociable. They may be different, but have remained close despite the distance. Claire is faced with a dilemma impossible to solve. Would her non-verbal sister want to go on struggling, damaged as she is, or end her suffering? Forsaking her career, Claire hardly leaves her sister’s side, refusing to give up the tiniest hope of healing. It takes an exhausting and lonely year for stubborn Claire to surrender enough to listen to her silent sister.
Buy Links: Amazon US | Amazon Australia | Amazon India | Amazon Japan | Amazon Canada | Amazon Italia | Barnes and Noble | Indie Bound | Bookshop | Kobo | Apple Books
Thanks for stopping by, Claire. I appreciate your time!
Award-winning Author of Historical Fiction with Heart, and Haunting, Bewitching Love Stories
Visit www.bettybolte.com for a complete list of my books and appearances.
Subscribe to My Newsletter to learn the inside scoop about releases and more!