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David Orsini

David Orsini is a Phi Beta Kappa graduate of Brown University, where he earned an M.A. and a Ph.D. in English Literature. David has taught literature, grammar, and composition at secondary schools and colleges in Rhode Island.

He is the author of Bitterness / Seven Stories, The Subtleties of Seduction, and The Woman Who Loved Too Well

David Orsini welcomes queries regarding:
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"A swiftly-paced, action-packed story..."

Kirkus Reviews


Hometown Cranston, RI

Favorite author Henry James

Favorite book The Wings of the Dove

Day job Educator


Pub Date:
ISBN: 978-1-4993-7172-7
Page count: 250pp

In this romantic drama set against the backdrop of World War II, a young woman and loyal member of the French Resistance seduces a Nazi in order to negotiate the freedom of a captive friend—though she finds herself falling for the enemy.

Simone and Marc Roussillon are a young married couple whose devotion to each other is only rivaled by their devotion to the Allied war effort. Simone serves as a spy, while Marc is renowned for his bravery as a pilot. When their friend Jean-Claude Jourdan is captured by the Nazis, they decide to do whatever it takes to get him back—including sending Simone straight into the arms of Gerhard Hauptmann, a German officer sent to court Simone’s nuclear chemist father for the Nazi cause. Simone has her husband’s blessing to trick the German into thinking she loves him in order to convince him to barter for Jean-Claude’s freedom. However, no one anticipated that Simone would fall in love with the dashing Gerhard, who is less a monstrous Nazi than a loyal German conflicted by the Third Reich’s crimes. The passionate romantic entanglement brings the violence of the battlefield home to them all. Orsini (Bitterness/Seven Stories, 2013, etc.) pens a swiftly paced, action-packed story. Unfortunately, due to the main characters’ borderline-unbelievable physical perfection, athletic prowess, cultured upbringings and wartime heroics, it is hard to sympathize with them. Everyone is gorgeous and adept at horseback riding, skiing, shooting, flying planes and spying. The same flowery descriptive words are used over and over to reiterate these details, particularly the “rugged” attractiveness of both Marc and Gerhard. However, despite these weaknesses, Orsini’s knack for creating high levels of psychosexual drama, jealousy and tension, as well as a number of well-placed plot twists, will likely keep readers engaged right down to the explosive conclusion.

A violently emotional and occasionally over-the-top story of love and war.


Literary Fiction

In Bitterness / Seven Stories, David Orsini explores the lives of characters that are tested as well as transformed or defeated by the loss of a spouse or by the loss of children and other relatives during a world war. Some of the characters are tested by the aftermath of a fatal air crash, by terminal illness, and by unrequited love. The troubled human beings who activate their journeys within these pages include war-haunted veterans, a young protagonist who has inadvertently caused the death of his best friend, and a world-weary engineer who enters an unorthodox sexual triangle. These stories often portray characters who make unwise and sometimes perverse choices and who struggle to move forward to a new cycle. Bitterness / Seven Stories marked the debut of an extraordinary writer. His stories guide the reader into memorable encounters with human beings who stand at the cusp of new self-awareness.

ISBN: 978-1493637744
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Literary Fiction

In David Orsini’s novella The Subtleties of Seduction, a boat race on Newport, Rhode Island waters during the summer of 1920 initiates a scenario of scandal, malice, and duplicity. Linda Maguire, a young woman who has always subdued her wilder impulses, becomes infatuated with Ryan Turner, a reckless nineteen-year-old youth. Linda’s engagement to Steven Bradford, a war hero and a promising lawyer, complicates her feelings for the two men. One afternoon, because she wants to be in the company of both men at the same time, she urges her fiancé to accept Ryan’s challenge to a sailboat race. But she is dismayed when Tracy, her younger sister, joins Ryan in the boat which he will be navigating. Instantly, she understands that Ryan and Tracy are lovers and that Ryan was merely playing a game with her when he roused her need for him. Ryan and Tracy have, in fact, devised the scenario of the boat race so that they can be alone together. What finally happens to Ryan and Tracy takes the rebellious couple as well as Linda by surprise.

ISBN: 978-1493597284
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