An impossibly smart forensic accountant.
An amateur archaeologist.
Stolen Italian beauty that brings them together.
All former analyst Alabaster Black wanted was to run away from employer, a covert U.S. organization called Rendition, and immerse herself in the beauty and wondrous culture of Rome, Italy. But when she meets a handsome investigator and passionate amateur archaeologist, Dante, and learns that he is looking for thieves of priceless Italian artifacts, she can’t resist. She has to help.
With the assistance of Roma Underground – Dante’s band of friends and colleagues dedicated to mapping the city beneath Rome – the trap is set. However, they;re up against men who are from common criminals: they’re the proof that Alabaster’s past isn’t going to stay secret, and even her new love and the strong bonds of friendship in Rome may not be enough.
Action-packed, filled with mystery, romance, friendships, and rich Italian flavors, Roma, Underground will keep you reading well into the night, until you read the last sentence – and grab the next book in the Roma Series.
Selected as Best Reads of 2015 by the Library of Clean Reads.
"A provocative thriller with a riveting and surprising plot." - M.J. Rose, International bestseller
"...the strong, captivating heroine and an allure of conspiracy and organized crime make this novel an undoubted success." - Kirkus Book Reviews.
"The book is an interesting cross between TV’s Alias and Camilleri’s Montalbano books. Each book in the series gives the reader a police case from law enforcement's perspective with all the teamwork needed to bring down the bad guys, plus there is the secret conspiracy stuff that draws our heroine into places she doesn't want to be, including dangerous situations." – Italophile Book Reviews
A new case from her old employer.
A contract on her head.
A scientific breakthrough that could save countless lives... If she can save the genius first.
The last thing that former Rendition analyst Alabaster Black, now Bianca Nerini, wanted to do was to leave Italy, and return to the U.S. to investigate a case, but she couldn’t turn down the request for assistance from her online contact – code name: Loki – who already helped her so much. She returns to the U.S. to investigate Cyril Sargent and Nasonia Pharmaceutical. However, when she realizes the implications of wasp genetics as a far superior cancer treatment, she knows she must help Sargent and protect his research from falling into the wrong hands.
Even a brilliant analyst like Bianca can’t accomplish everything on her own, though. Her friends from Roma Underground soon join her in Boston to try and stop an assassin, a cold-blooded murderer who will stop at nothing to fulfill the contract on her head...An assassin who has already caused heartbreak and grief in the past to her friends in Rome.
Fast-paced and filled with intrigue, treason, loyalty, and good Italian food, the exciting sequel to Roma, Underground will leave you breathless with anticipation and eager for the next book in the Roma Series…For nothing is certain once you enter the wasp’s nest.
"...the mood and pace remain consistent throughout this thrilling page-turner. Black is back and just as entertaining as ever." Kirkus Reviews
"As is his trademark, Valjan’s description of things, places, people and situations are vivid. This time the setting is Boston and the author's knowledge of the city's history, its culture, and its citizens are evident. However, his love for everything Italian comes through clearly in this novel too because it is infused with Italy's dishes, culture, expressions, the Mafia and the Italian characters Gennaro and Farrugia from the first book." – Marilyn for Italy Books Blog
A secret file.
A murdered student.
A repeat of a dark chapter of Italian history.
The brilliant analyst Alabaster Black, alias Bianca Nerini, is happy to be back in Italy, back with her love, Dante, but then her curiosity gets the better of her and leads to a meeting in a café in Milan…a meeting that results in the death of young university student Charlie Brooks, who leaves her with a secret file detailing the development of a new weapon that violates international law. Burdened by guilt, she seeks justice for Charlie.
Things go from bad to worse: Dante is angry at her because she told him nothing about the meeting, a scandal-mongering journalist is trying to crucify her friend Farrugia, blaming him for Charlie’s death, and even her contact Loki is warning her to stay away from the case, because it involves not just a secret weapon, but political intrigues and powerful corporate alliances, too, as well as the organization Bianca is desperately trying to escape: Rendition. The stakes are higher than ever, and Bianca and her trusted friends will have to find their way through these murky waters, or watch Italy return to the decades of daily terrorism known as the Years of Lead.
"Valjan's characters, from Bianca to investigator Isidore Farrugia to the irascible Gennaro, are memorable and worth following, in this book and the others in the series; the international terrorism and tech investigating ring true, and the European tensions -- which I double-checked for reference -- are intriguing and of ongoing concern…Characters, plot, ideas, background: In THREADING THE NEEDLE, Valjan weaves it all into an international crime novel worth the read.” Kingdom Books
"I continue to be amazed at how well Valjan incorporates Italian political history into a great plot as he immerses us deeper into the lives of these characters that I now love. This time Valjan tackles government conspiracies that have ties to the years of terrorism in Italy from 1969 to 1984 known as the “Years of Lead.” I remember this time." – Library of Clean Reads
An anti-mafia judge is assassinated.
The Camorra and the Sicilian mafia might be working together.
A brilliant young sociologist holds the answers... And hides a secret.
After the assassination of an anti-mafia judge on the streets of Naples, ex-Rendition analyst Alabaster Black/Bianca Nerini faces a mystery: why did women on motorcycles carry out a typical Camorra ambush?
As it turns out, this case is something the former forensic accountant understands very well: a financial crime, or, more specifically, a counterfeiting operation so large it might disrupt the global economy, and involves not just the Camorra, but the Sicilian mafia, too, with their mysterious leader.
Fast-paced and filled with mystery, intrigue, and unexpected twists, the fourth book in the Roma Series will take you even deeper into financial deals, organized crime, and test the friendship, love, and loyalty within Bianca’s inner circle.
"I've read all of the Roma series books, and I found this to be the most complex and skillfully plotted…a deftly written novel and one fans of suspense will surely enjoy." Blogcritics Book Reviews in Brief
"Readers will be kept involved in Turning to Stone until the end. This is truly one of those books in which readers find [they are] questioning and doubting motives until very late in the book. I enjoyed the fact that I found myself unsure of things until nearly the end. The suspense and uncertainty keep readers guessing -- and pull readers deeper into the setting and emotions of the book." – A.J. Thompson for Italy Books Blog
A phone call for help.
A mysterious new ally.
Murder, designer drugs, and a hacker who doesn't take ‘No’ for an answer.
‘On a break’ from Dante after the tragedy in Naples, the former Rendition analyst Alabaster Black/Bianca Nerini is back in Boston, trying to solve the murder of a call girl. The murder appears to be connected to designer drugs, a horrifying deal between a covert U.S. organization and a Russian real estate mogul. However, there’s a power shift within Rendition that would put a brilliant but unscrupulous figure called Magician in charge.
Bianca finds help from a new friend, someone who has suffered more than enough trauma to understand hers. But is he to be trusted, or is he a tool for Rendition? A battle will redefine the past for everyone and create a new uncertain future.
A breathtakingly fast-paced fifth installment in the Roma Series, Corporate Citizen will start a new chapter for those who mange to survive the Magician’s spell.