Aristidis Cafe, in the centre of Kritsa, is right opposite Nikitakis Gift shop where my historical adventure novel, Kritsotopoula, Girl of Kritsa is on sale.
Although the location of Aristidis Cafe made it an obvious venue for a launch party, the main reasons I chose it are the hosts, Aristidis and his wife Irene, who go out of their way to welcome guests to Kritsa. Their comfortable seating and sun umbrellas make it a great relaxing point for visitors to the village, and of course, those umbrellas gave us good protection from the rain!
It gave me an extra thrill that despite the language issue, several local people came along to wish me well, including the Chair of the Kritsa Village Cultural Association, Νικος Κοκκινης and the Chair of the planned Kritsotopoula museum, Νικος Μασσαρος. Three local women, with excellent English language skills, also bought copies of the book so I await their feedback with a mix of nervous excitement!
This is me with Nikos, owner of Nikitakis gift shop. Even though he’d moved the book stand inside due to a rain shower, it didn’t dampen my spirits. I count myself lucky that Nikos chose to stock Kritsotopoula, Girl of Kritsa right in the middle of Kritsotopoula Street.
These traditional musicians added to the lively atmosphere, no one danced though, too busy chatting!
Of course Nikos sold books during the evening, and I felt like a celebrity as I signed copies. This is me signing the book bought by Steve Daniels, who writes one of my favourite blogs, Crete Nature.
Some guests even brought along books for me to sign that they’d previously purchased, either from Eklektos Bookshop in Elounda or via Amazon, shame I couldn’t sign the ebook versions!
Just for fun we had a prize draw and winners now have an exclusive T Shirt, cap, key ring or pen, all sporting the image of the Kritsotopoula, Girl of Kritsa book cover.
Here is the T Shirt winner, Jean Dugmore.
Jessie, the owner Elixirio, Kritsa’s quirky mezes cafe won the hat, and here she is modeling it beautifully. If you fancy an a relaxed evening, with a range of delicious home cooked mezes while you sip your drinks in a shady arbour, then I can recomend you pay a visit, you’ll find Jessie opposite Kritsa school.
My work in progress is a sequel called Rodanthe’s Gift which includes a mystery about the location of some hidden gold, so we had a free to enter game based on this. Thanks to my friend Ann, who managed to speak to virtually everyone during the evening, we gained many entries to find the hidden treasure. Arisitidis generously donated a meal voucher for the lucky winner, of the treasure hunt, Julie Pidsley.
Thank you to Crete Homes for supporting me via sponsorship for this launch event and for placing a link to my blog on their website. This is Hilary Dawson, from Crete Homes displaying Nigel Ratcliffe’s retelling of the legendary poem, Rhodanthe’s Song. I’m indebted to Nigel for generously sharing his translation of the early Greek poem, and for his wise feedback on my early drafts. Our collaboration will continue as Nigel and I have already discussed how I might use some of his work in my sequel, Rodanthe’s Gift. Meanwhile, I look forward to seeing both Rhodanthe’s Song and Kritsotopoula, Girl of Kritsa next to each other in the planned Kritsotopoula museum.
Thank you to Robin Williams, editor of Crete Today Newsletter for allowing me to use this photo of me with Hilary. If you’d like this great monthly newsletter, please email Robin via firstname.lastname@example.org
Most other photos are courtesy of Cynthia Pay who gave me permission to use them. Thank you Cindy.
Sincere thanks to all of those people who came along despite the ‘iffy’ weather, and to those who couldn’t attend but still sent best wishes.
Finally, if you enjoy the book, please add a review to Amazon Reviews, they don’t mind if you bought it elsewhere, and it would mean a great deal to me. X
PS – a few days after the event, a report of the event appeared in the local daily newspaper, so thanks to the reporter, Leonidas Klontzas for attending during the event and for making such a full report. I have a cutting from the newspaper so that I can translate it. Meanwhile, this link will take you to a shorter review on line and, if you can’t read Greek then Google translate will help you read it.