In the February issue of RT Book Reviews, RT’s Liz French interviewed thriller co-authors Lincoln Child and Douglas Preston about their new series starring a new hero, Gideon Crew. We didn’t have quite enough room to include all the Q&As, but we thought you’d like to hear about Douglas Preston’s adventures in Italy and his involvement in the Amanda Knox case (Knox, an American living in Italy, was recently convicted of murdering her roommate). Additionally, we asked both authors which classic books they simply couldn’t get through and Child especially was very candid. And don’t miss the giveaway at the end of this bonus content from the February issue!
Liz French: Mr. Preston, Tom Cruise’s production company has optioned Monster of Florence. Care to comment? Would you also like to comment about your involvement in the Amanda Knox case and your entanglements with Italian prosecutor Giuliano Mignini? Is it true that you were one of the many persons of interest in the Monster of Florence case?
Douglas Preston: I can’t say anything at all about the Monster film, sorry — that’s classified. The conviction of Amanda Knox for murder was a huge travesty of justice. The Knox prosecutor, Mignini, was featured in my book, The Monster of Florence, as he was the prosecutor in that mysterious case as well. He is corrupt and abusive. He actually uses, as a source of evidence, a mystic who claims the Virgin of Fatima gives her information about notorious unsolved crimes in Italy. (This may sound crazy but it is carefully documented in my book.) What happened to Amanda Knox happened to me a year before: the prosecutor took me into custody and subjected me to an interrogation, in Italian, no interpreter present, that went on for hours. He accused me of involvement in a satanic sect and being an accessory to murder. He demanded I confess. When I refused (the charges were ridiculous) he indicted me on the spot for perjury and obstruction of justice and “suggested” that I leave the country. My family and I fled Italy the next day in terror. The charges against Amanda Knox have been ginned up, the scientific evidence and DNA reports fabricated. That poor girl is completely innocent. She went to Italy as a carefree American college student and she will return a broken-down old Italian woman — if she ever gets home at all.
Liz French: Mr. Child, I loved your “didn’t finish it’ book list in your web bio (and am totally with you on the Gravity’s Rainbow thing). Are there any other books you feel like you should read and enjoy but you just cannot?
Lincoln Child: Thank you! Yes, a few books come to mind. I tried to read To the Lighthouse and just couldn’t get through it. In fact I got to within 30 pages of the end and had to put it aside. Despite how “important” the book is, I couldn’t force myself to read another word. I’ve made a few running starts at Ulysses but never got past the first few chapters. And I tried reading War and Peace in high school, got 400 pages into it, realized I could have read an entire novel by that point yet had barely scratched the surface of the Tolstoy, and promptly threw it aside. Philistinic, I know, but there it is.
Douglas Preston: I agree with Linc on all the books mentioned above except War and Peace. That is truly a great novel; I was so swept up in it that I was in a daze for weeks afterward. Gravity’s Rainbow, on the other hand, is professor bait.
For the entire interview, check out the entire article "Douglas Preston & Lincoln Child" on page 14 and 15 in the February issue of RT BOOK REVIEWS! And learn more about the new series on the authors' website.
GIVEAWAY ALERT: If you did not enter the magazine giveaway for a copy of Gideon’s Sword, you can still enter to win one of five copies of the book. Just e-mail Liz@RTBookReviews.com with your name and address. Be sure to put “Gideon” in the subject line. One entry per person, please. Winners will be notified on February 15!