by Lorraine Evanoff
Genre: Spy Thriller
Release Date: October 9, 2015
Investment banker Louise Moscow loves her new life and career in late 1980s Paris. With a high-profile dream job, plus fascinating friends and love interests in a glamorous city, things couldn’t be better. When she stumbles upon criminal activity at her company, the FBI and CIA force her to cooperate and bring down the murderous brazen bankers in what turns out to be one of the greatest scandals of the twentieth century.
Code word: FOLIAGE!
As she descended, the temperature changed markedly. At the bottom, she found the first signs of the bones of six million people that had been stacked up against the two thousand seven hundred feet of Catacomb walls. The juxtaposition of the ancient bones and architecture with scattered graffiti of philosophical sayings and quotations on the walls was striking. The aura was sacred, somber, and spooky. There were bandits hiding out in corners, as well as people hosting parties in the “unofficial” sections. Louise hurried past them, trying to go unnoticed, keeping the flashlight beam low to the ground.
The flashlight and the intermittent candles were all that lit her path. Her eyes adjusted, providing clearer focus on the walls and corridors. She searched for any sign of a lotus flower or any other symbolic meaning for lotus. She read graffiti and plaques but found no lotus. She seemed to walk for more than a mile, possibly in circles. As she hurried along, a rock jutting up from the dirt and stone floor sent her stumbling down to her hands and knees.
Her flashlight escaped her grip, clanked, and rolled to a stop about ten feet in front of her. The beam was all she could see in the inky darkness. Now, being on her hands and knees provided a new perspective. She crawled toward the light beam, which faced the bottom of the wall on her right and illuminated an engraving. Louise recognized it as the Om Mani Padme Hum, or Hail the Jewel in the Lotus, a twelfth-century Buddhist Sanskrit mantra, meaning the lotus of whose navel forms our universe.
Chicago native LORRAINE EVANOFF graduated from DePaul University with a degree in French. She lived in Paris France for seven years, first working as an English teacher and film translator (for subtitles), then in film production and distribution. She moved to the Silicon Valley, and after earning her credentials from the Institute of Management Accountants, she worked in finance during the dot.com era. She currently resides in Los Angeles, where she works in film finance. Her first novel was inspired by and is loosely based on events that occurred when she was living in France.