How did Veronica Di Grigoli research crime novel Friends with Secrets?

When I worked in London as a teacher of English as a foreign language, I met so many extraordinary characters from all around the world that I had enough inspiration to write about twenty novels. The only one I have actually written is called Friends with Secrets. Buy Friends with Secrets on Amazon.com ~ Buy…

Istanbul photo gallery

  A year living in Istanbul inspired two of Veronica’s books: Her novel ‘Evil Eye’ about a young English girl who finds herself the victim of a sinister plot to take advantage of her; and the non-fiction book ‘How to Protect Yourself against the Evil Eye’ which explains the intriguing cultural and historical background of…

Ten ways to Protect Yourself from the Evil Eye

Do you have a son who used to be a lovely little child, but suddenly turned into a vile, stroppy teenager? In Brazil, that would get you worried that someone has cast the evil eye on him. Does your car or office equipment perplexingly need endless costly repairs? That would get an Indian sure the…

Fancy some nuts?

Originally posted on The Dangerously Truthful Diary of a Sicilian Housewife:
I photographed these traditional Sicilian market stalls during the village festival this summer. They sell all kinds of nuts, and a few typical sweets as well. The vendors travel around Sicily from village festival to village festival – there’s always one going on somewhere…

Some Ancient Precautions against the Evil Eye

This mosaic is in Antiochia, in southern Turkey, but it was made by someone from the ancient Roman Empire.  It shows all the weaponry and charms the Romans used against the evil eye. The evil eye is being attacked by a sword, a trident (used by the Romans for hunting fish), a scorpion, a poisonous…

A Sicilian Card Game

Excerpt from the book Sicilian Card Games – An Easy-to-Follow Guide Buona Sera Signorina This is a past-paced and hilarious game which requires speedy reactions rather than judgement. It is a great favourite with children… and adults who have not grown out of laughing! The cards A Sicilian deck of 40 cards is used. Suits…

Istanbul, the “Prostitute” City

The Turks say that Istanbul is like a prostitute – beautiful, but dangerous. I decided to portray the intensely stimulating mix of beauty and danger, which so characterises Istanbul, in my novel “Evil Eye.” I take the heroine, Celeste, on an adventure full of threats, violence and narrow escapes which makes its way though gold-filled…

What does the “Evil Eye” really mean?

When I lived in Turkey, I saw blue glass charms which looked like eyes all around me.  People hung huge ones, up to ten inches across, inside their front doors.  People wore small ones as pendants or used them as keyrings.  I never entered a public office without seeing at least one hanging on the…

A Few Famous Turks

My novel Evil Eye was inspired by the year I spent living and working in Isatanbul, Turkey – a vast and rapidly developing country about which most people know very little! Here is a fun introduction to some very famous people. How many of them did you already know were Turkish? 1. St. Paul The…

Ten things I bet you don’t know about Turkey

I lived and worked in Turkey for a year and, although it was sometimes very tough being a single woman there, I never stopped enjoying learning about the country. Here’s a list of ten facts I bet you do not know about Turkey! 1. Money was invented in Turkey The first coins ever made were…