Manic Readers

Annalisa Russo

I grew up in the Midwest in a first generation Italian family. We lived with my grandparents since in an Italian family when the eldest girl marries, she doesn’t move out, her husband moves in. I was the oldest of five children which caused the usual sibling problems—fighting, borrowing stuff, and eating really, really fast or you were out of luck. Our grandparents spoke to us in Italian (because America was their new home now) and we answered in English (so we wouldn’t get kicked out of kindergarten like my mother did for not knowing English).

I went to an all-girl Catholic high school (yes, with the plaid skirt/blazer/knee-high socks) and on to an all-girl college where I rebelled by wearing slacks in the library instead of a skirt. I majored in math until I switched to English Lit after deciding to become a teacher. Since I wanted to graduate early, I took several English courses at a time which is frowned upon in math (you know, prerequisite and stuff) and then went on to teach 5th grade math –go figure.

During this exciting time, I began to write for my own pleasure, as no one wanted to buy my stories. I have a rejection slip from Helen Gurley Brown at Cosmopolitan magazine (way back when they published short stories in each issue). I framed it because Ms. Brown actually wrote on it and said (and I quote): Your story was not quite right for us, but we’d be interested in seeing some of your other work. Of course, I didn’t know at the time that I should have opened a bottle of very expensive champagne and called all my friends over to celebrate because I received an actual written response from an editor instead of a form letter (now I’m much more savvy; I crack the champagne when I put the finished manuscript in the mail). In my naiveté, I actually took Ms. Brown’s letter as a rejection—gasp– and decided to concentrate on making a living.

I also married, had three children, traveled, took up gardening and became a pretty good cook (now I just cook for company; my stove is for resale purposes only). And I inherited a tabby named Buster who really runs the house and my life. Luckily he’s pretty easy to live with and doesn’t complain unless his dish is empty, which is all the time.

My son helped me create this website as his business sense is intact along with his sense of humor (a necessity to working on technology with me, so he says). My daughter is responsible for introducing me to Facebook and had a beautiful baby girl in August. (Baby trumps technology, Son).

I have also finished the third book in The Cavelli Angel Saga, Angel Lost, Angel Found, coming out November 2015. The Cavelli Angel Saga is a romantic suspense quartet about an Italian immigrant family in 1925—the Cavelli family. The family consists of three brothers—Michael, Raphael, and Gabriel, named after the archangels (and angels they’re not!) and two sisters, Anna and Tessia.

Annalisa's MR Links
MR Publishers
The Wild Rose Press
Videos by Annalisa Russo

Current Releases
Private Investigator Meg Cavelli wonders why her traitorous family has trotted out the fatted calf for Seth Truitt, the boy who left her flat eight years ago. Now he’s back, sexier than she remembers, and needs her help. How can Meg accept Seth...
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: Angel Boy
Charity O’Malley is about to break the law of the land in order to follow her dreams. They’ll call her a whisper sister. A tarnished female.  A Jezebel. As a woman who wants to shape her own destiny, she’s about to reopen her f...
Available Now!
Angel Lost, Angel Found
The Cavelli Angel Saga Archaeologist Raphael Cavelli wonders why he isn’t in some watering hole in Peru drinking a lukewarm cerveza next to a bosomy blonde. Instead, back in Chicago trying to stay one step ahead of the law for stealing the a...
Available Now!
An Angel Healed
Michael Vincente Cavelli would have been happy as a farmer. Instead, he has a lot on his plate. For starters, he's the only rational Cavelli male, the one who inherited the mantle of patriarch at a young age, not only running the family's ...
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An Angel's Redemption
Grace Hathaway is getting along just fine since her father's untimely death—until she is followed home one dismal night by a shadowy stranger. If she'd had another choice, she would never have approached the door of the country's...
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Rags to Rubies

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