Grand Finale

GRAND FINALE: SAL PEPITONE is 76 years old with eight strokes under his belt. Back in the day, he was a guy with minor league notoriety, back when the papers used to label him with terms like gangster, mobster, known underworld figure, etcetera.And yes, it’s true that Sal was pretty well connected back then, back when the Genovese crime family ran Jersey City… But Sal was never really the muscle, he was generally more of a numbers guy. His only major convictions were for tax-related nonsense, nothing violent. And his one big regret is how he left things back in the summer of ’79. That was the summer that Sal was sent to the beautiful island town of Port Hannasquat to burn down a United States Senator’s vacation home. That was the summer he fell in love with Evelyn Parks. EVELYN PARKS was just a kid back then. 22 years old, fresh out of school, one foot in the door of her old man’s law firm and the other one pointed toward art school. She was smart and beautiful and going through a wild phase. Sometimes back then, she’d break into people’s houses. She never took anything, she just got a kick out of looking around. Back then, a lot of people just left their doors open… Now Evelyn is 66. She’s got three kids, two grandkids, a perfectly respectable boyfriend and plenty of money. But around the time she became a grandmother, Evelyn developed a strangely powerful Intuition, a gift that tells her things she couldn’t possibly know, and shows her the days she hasn’t yet lived. MICHAEL DOHERTY is Sal’s grandson, technically. They barely know each other. The only thing Michael really does know is that Sal can’t be trusted. So when Sal claims to have only four days left to live, Michael thinks he’s bluffing… But Sal also claims to have $100,000 hidden away in a safety deposit box, courtesy of the late Frank Sinatra. And that gets Michael’s attention. All Sal wants in return is a lift to Port Hannasquat. Considering Michael is out of work and newly single, the timing is actually pretty decent. That hundred grand would come in handy. MERDITH RICHARDS is Michael’s best friend. Most people call her Ricky. She’s a Brooklyn songwriter who needs four grand to pay off a recording studio. And even though Ricky doesn’t believe in love, she’s a sucker for romance- especially the doomed, scandalous, star-crossed variety. So when Michael and Sal plot a course to Port Hannasquat, Ricky wants in… But this little road trip is going to get awfully bumpy, especially when the law comes knocking on their door. And considering Sal is technically an escaped con, the law is gonna knock pretty hard.

Meet Christopher Baldi

Hello! I’m a screenwriter who’s been working in film and television for over twenty years. Grand Finale is my first novel, written in a self-righteous huff after my agent rejected the script for being “uncommercial.” -Christopher Baldi

The Mentor

What if someone you love is a serial killer? While investigating a series of murders, DCI Eric Shaw, leading a forensic team at Scotland Yard, notices a possible relation to a cold case involving a person very close to him. What he ignores is that the details of similar crimes are described in a blog whose author signs herself as Mina, like the nickname that person used as a child, when she witnessed the massacre of her family.

Meet Rita Carla Francesca Monticelli

Rita Carla Francesca Monticelli is an Italian science fiction and thriller author. She has lived in Cagliari (Sardinia, Italy) since 1993, earning a degree in biology and working as an independent author, scientific and literary translator, educator, and science communicator. In the past she also worked as researcher, tutor and professor’s assistant in the field of ecology at “Dipartimento di Biologia Animale ed Ecologia” of the University of Cagliari. She has written original fiction since 2009. Between 2012-2013 she wrote and published a hard science fiction series set on Mars, “Deserto rosso”, whose omnibus hit No. 1 on the Italian Kindle Store in November 2014. The series was published in English, with the title “Red Desert”, between 2014 and 2015, and includes four books. She also authored three crime thrillers in the Detective Eric Shaw Trilogy, an action thriller “Kindred Intentions” (2016), five more science fiction novels – “L’isola di Gaia” (2014), “Per caso” (2015), “Ophir. Codice vivente” (2016), “Sirius. In caduta libera” (2018), and “Nave stellare Aurora” (2020) – and a non-fiction book titled “Self-publishing lab. Il mestiere dell’autoeditore” (2020). This is a new edition of her crime thriller “The Mentor” that was first published in English by AmazonCrossing in 2015 and became an international bestseller, hitting No. 1 on the Kindle Store in the USA, UK, and Australia in October 2015. The other two books in the trilogy are “Syndrome” and “Beyond the Limit” (2023). She is also a member of the International Thriller Writers Organization. She is often a guest both in Italy and abroad during book fairs, including Salone Internazionale del Libro di Torino (Turin Book Fair), Frankfurter Buchmesse (Frankfurt Book Fair) and Più Libri Più Liberi (Rome Book Fair), local publishing events, university conventions as well as classes (University of Insubria), where she gives speeches or conducts workshops about self-publishing and genre fiction writing.