Xlibris Releases The Lion and the Lily

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A Historical Novel with Uncommon Sophistication and Insight

A gripping story of love, history, and art awaits readers as Xlibris announces the release of The Lion and the Lily. The first novel from short story writer Vesta Brownell, this book follows the life of an art historian launched into the front lines of a merciless war—discovering passion, survival, and courage along the treacherous path.

Written with vivid detail, The Lion and the Lily is set in Florence, Italy 1940, when art historian Marco Tragoni is drafted into Mussolini’s army. In Africa, he fights and is captured by the British. Luckily, he escapes to Sicily where he has a malaria attack and meets his love, Laura. Marco, unable to help her leave the island, returns to Italy alone, faced with a new challenge of living without his beloved—and braving the wrath of war for his love of art.

In Italy, he returns to his work in the art superintendency, helping to move the Renaissance art to safety and track art stolen by the Germans. His bitter rival is an agent of Reischmarshal Hermann Göring and Hitler for the acquisition of art. To make matters worse, Sicily is invaded, leaving Marco frightened for Laura. Haunted by guilt that he was unable to help her and that he has not done enough for his country, Marco becomes a Partisan, also rescuing art including the symbol of the city of Florence, The Lion and the Lily.

Will this be the end of Marco’s journey, or will events unravel a new beginning? A novel with uncommon sophistication and historical insight, The Lion and the Lily is an engaging piece that reveals a timeless tale.

For more information on this book, log on to Xlibris.com.

About the Author
Vesta Brownell was born in the Midwest and raised in a family where outdoor recreation, such as camping, fishing, hiking, and ice skating were of prime importance. She earned her BA from Iowa State University and later obtained a job in Special Services with the United States Air Force, in Laon, France. Brownell also resided in Germany for three years with her husband and two young sons. During this time, she studied weaving in Denmark; the country from which her maternal grandparents emigrated. After returning to the United States, she taught developmentally delayed and physically handicapped children for several years. She also earned a master’s degree in counseling and art therapy from California State University—Sacramento .

Brownell is also a portrait painter and serves on the Coos Art Museum Board of Directors, in Coos Bay, on the south coast of Oregon. She is a published author of short stories. The Lion and the Lily, her first book, is an historical novel about World War II and set in North Africa, Sicily, and Italy.

The Lion and the Lily * by Vesta Brownell
Publication Date: February 3, 2010
Trade Paperback; $19.99; 262 pages; 978-1-4415-8600-1
Trade Hardback; $29.99; 262 pages; 978-1-4415-8601-8

To request a complimentary paperback review copy, contact the publisher at (888) 795-4274 x. 7479. Tear sheets may be sent by regular or electronic mail to Marketing Services. To purchase copies of the book for resale, please fax Xlibris at (610) 915-0294 or call (888) 795-4274 x. 7876.

For more information, contact Xlibris at (888) 795-4274 or on the web at Xlibris.com.

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