Diana: Where did the title of your book, Speak of the Devil, come from?
Allison: I called this book Speak of the Devil for two reasons. First there is a villain named Diablo — the Devil — whom my heroine is trying to bring down. Second, this book explores MS-13, a terrifying real-life street gang that is notorious for its brutality and misogyny. One of my biggest challenges as a prosecutor was convincing victim/witnesses of MS-13 to tell me what happened. Victims were often terrified to talk to authorities. “Speak of the Devil and he will appear,” one witness told me. There was this feeling that if you spoke about evil, you would bring it to you. I often had to convince these witnesses that they should “speak of the devil.”
Diana: Congratulations on being called the female John Grisham! I’m so proud of you. Do you like the title?
Allison: I love being called “the female John Grisham!” That man knows how to write a book. I hope my storeis are as compelling as Grisham’s, even if I bring a little extra lipgloss to the table.
Diana: Love it! I can’t imagine John in lipgloss through! That being said, which career do you like best? Prosecutor or author?
Allison: I resigned from being a prosecutor in 2011, in order to write full time. It was a hard decision. I loved being an Assistant U.S. Attorney, specializing in prosecuting sex crimes. I think it’s the most rewarding legal job in America. But I’ve been overwhelmed by the reaction to my novels: from readers who love the novels to the support I’ve gotten from Simon & Schuster/Touchstone. If folks want to hear more storeis about Anna, I’m delighted to provide them. I’ve always loved books, and I’m thrilled to be part of this world.
Diana: Well, I am thrilled you chose to write — while we need dedicated people like you in government, I cannot imagine a world without Allison Leotta books!
Okay, we’ve toyed with this group long enough. The winner of a book by Allison Leotta is Susan! Please contact me within ten days with your contact and snail mail info so I can send it on to Allison. Enjoy and please check out KissAndThrill.com for a great interview of Misty Evans by Sarah Andre there on Tuesday! XO