Friday, July 20, 2012

Interview with Kfir Luzzato, Author of The Evelyn Project

Kfir Luzzatto was born and raised in Italy, and moved to Israel as a teenager. He acquired the love for the English language from his father, a former U.S. soldier, a voracious reader and a prolific writer. Kfir has a PhD in chemical engineering and works as a patent attorney. He lives in Omer, Israel, with his full-time partner, Esther, their four children, Michal, Lilach, Tamar and Yonatan, and the dog Elvis.

Kfir has published extensively in the professional and general press over is the author of several short stories but now mostly writes full-length fiction. Books: CROSSING THE MEADOW (2003 P&E “BEST HORROR NOVEL”), THE ODYSSEY GENE(2006), HAVE BOOK WILL TRAVEL (2012). He got the idea for his new thriller, “THE EVELYN PROJECT,” from an in-depth research into the family archives. He has another book of fiction in the works.

Visit the author online at

What brought you to writing fiction? What's your earliest recollection of wanting to write a book?

I actually wrote a short story when I was 12 years old. The plot was strong but, being honest with myself, I realized that the result stunk. So I hid it deep in my drawer and moved on. It took me some 30 years to sit down and do it again, and this time when I was done I liked what I read.

Who are your favorite writers? Why?

My list is very long but the four at the top are:

John Wyndham, because he writes science fiction that reads like real life;

P. G. Wodehouse, because nobody writes dialogue like him and because his are the best escapist books ever written;

Franz Kafka, because of his genius in devising haunting plots with multiple layers, and for writing books that make you skip dinner;

Robert A. Heinlein, because of his sparkling, down-to-earth, transparent (and often funny) writing.

How did writing The Evelyn Project come about?

Evelyn was my great aunt, who died of tuberculosis at 26. I have always been intrigued by her and her relation with my great-grandfather (her father). I have three daughters and one of them is her living image and will be 26 this year. That got me thinking and I started researching the family archives. One thing led to another and here we are.

They say you can judge a book by its cover. Can you tell us a little about your cover and who designed it?

The picture on the cover is taken from my great aunt Evelyn's studio portrait that hangs on the wall beside my writing desk. The cover itself was designed by my daughter, Michal, who (in addition to being a lawyer) is a talented digital artist. In the past she also designed the cover for another book of mine, The Odyssey Gene.

Are there any messages in this book that you want the reader to know about?

I’m always stuck on this question with all my books... This is a thriller that is woven around sad events that happened to real people and exciting events that, in the book, happened to imaginary people – but which in real life can and do happen to real people. In short, Life. So my main message is that entertaining books don't have to be shallow and detached from reality, and serious topics can be treated in an entertaining book, to make the mixture as close as possible to our reality.

Where can you purchase a copy of The Evelyn Project?

It is available at Amazon and Barnes and Noble in printed and electronic formats.

Tell us about your next book!

An Italian Obsession is a different kind of book. Different, I mean, from what I have written so far. It is drama written as a very personal slice of life of an Italian youth, who is growing up in the ‘60s and ‘70s. Although it is pure fiction, it is also a faithful testimony of middle class life in a healing post war society.


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