Lipstick & Danger

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To Russia with Love?

One of the things I do as a writer is research. This helps me get a feel of the place, people and culture I want to weave into my stories. Sometimes I’m fortunate enough to have traveled to the places I write about in hopes of drawing the reader in.  I’ve lived in five states, and traveled to a number of countries. My education in geography has included being trained to be a geo-teacher by National Geographic, participating in Space Camp for Educators and taking a class in mining. I just can’t help myself when I find books on the Middle East or other regions of the world. Just recently I purchased a book called, Hebrew in Ten Minutes a Day. I may be over estimating my ability to learn and speak Hebrew, but I’m going to give it a go.

Which brings me to my work in progress (WIP). The title is Invisible Goodbye and the setting is in Russia. Traveling to Russia is on my bucket list. Even when I was a little girl taking piano lessons, my favorite composers were Russian. I fell in love with the Russian ballet and St. Basils Cathedral. Yes, I remember the Cold War, the Space Race and the days when we nearly went to war over Cuba. Stir all that together and I have an unhealthy (my dad would have said) fascination with the country.

In the coming weeks I’m going to introduce you to Russia to help you see the beauty, mystery and geo-political complications of all things Russian. Today I’d like to share some things that might surprise you. Politics aside, this is a pretty awesome place to visit.


  1. Russia is the largest country in the world. It occupies 1/10 of all the land on Earth.
  2. It is closer to fly from New York City to Moscow than to fly across the entire country of Russia.
  3. There are eleven time zones. (We have only four.)
  4. Its forests, steppes and tundra provide habitat for Asiatic black bears, snow leopards (my favorite) and polar bears. They even have the largest cat in the world, the Siberian Tiger  and weighs in at almost 700 pounds.
  5. There are 120 ethnic groups and you could hear over 100 different languages.
  6. Woolly mammoths! They are in the process of using preserved DNA to bring them back!
  7. The Nutcracker, Swan Lake & Sleeping Beauty Ballets were composed by Tchaikovsky.
  8. There are 160 volcanoes, 29 are still active.
  9. I bet you’ll be surprised to know that Russia is a democratic law-based state. It is divided into the legislative, executive and judicial branches. And yes, it once was a communist country back in the day.
  10. A Russian man drinks an average of 5 gallons of Vodka a year.

Here is a taste of what you might expect in the new Enigma series, Invisible Goodbye.

From the historical city of Moscow, Russia to the deepest waters  of the world, at Lake Baikal in Siberia, Tessa Scott finds she can no longer outrun a man who uses his influence to isolate her from her teammates. Making an alliance with the notorious tribesman, she discovers he has uncovered a scientific project that could establish world domination unless destroyed. 

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