Embers of War - Outline

Embers of War will be published in summer 2020, the 75th anniversary of the end of WWII in Europe.

When opera clashes with the Battle for Italy in the dying days of WWII, who can stay alive, sane and in love? 

It's summer 1944. Nine months after its liberation, war-torn Naples teems with Allied troops but the inhabitants struggle with lack of food and work, and prostitution is rife.

As the bitter Italian campaign enters its second year, Frank, a British officer, knows he's a lucky man. Since reopening an abandoned theatre, he is relishing the chance to stage operas to entertain the Tommies.

Vermillion, an officer in the ATS, loves the independence and fulfilment of working at the theatre. And with Frank falling for her, she begins to return his feelings.

But firebombs from an air raid fan the flames of Frank’s memories of four years of war. Nightmares threaten to undermine him. Should he hang on in Naples? Or should he confront his fears, rejoining his former comrades as they fight their way north towards the Alps?

And if Frank returns to the front, what will Vermillion do? She won’t stay in Naples just waiting for his return. 

 © rjjhall 2020