First, a quick update on Red Flags… I am simultaneously doing about a half-dozen different things to prepare this book for publication. I’m hoping to have some cover art previews for y’all within the next few days.
In the meantime, I came across an article called Death, Destruction, And Debt: 41 Photos Of Life In 1970s New York. Here, you will see a haunting collection of photos of New York City during the troubled 1970s. In Red Flags, my main character Larissa is growing up in the Soviet Union during this same time period. In an early scene in the novel, her neighbor/surrogate grandmother shows her a scrapbook full of newspaper and magazine clippings with photos similar to the ones in this article. These are the kinds of photos that form Larissa’s first impression of the United States. For years, this is how she perceives everyday life on the other side of the Iron Curtain– dangerous, dirty, violent, impoverished. The fact that Larissa’s family isn’t much better off than the Americans in the photos escapes her until much later in the story.