WAKE UNTO ME BY LISA CACH (March 31, 2011)
Caitlyn Monahan knows she belongs somewhere else. It's what her dead mother's note suggested, and it's what her recurring nightmares allude to.
Desperate to flee these terrifying dreams--and her small town--she accepts a spot at a boarding school in France. Only, when she arrives, her nightmares get worse.
But then there are her amazing dreams, so vivid and so real, with visits from an alluring, mysterious, and gorgeous Italian boy from the 1500s.
Caitlyn knows they are soul mates, but how can she be in love with someone who exists only in her dreams
This is the painting of Lucrezia Panciatichi, by Agnolo Bronzino, that inspired the Bianca de’ Medici character in Wake Unto Me; I first saw it years ago, in Italy, and thought she looked cold and creepy. I later learned that this had more to do with Bronzino’s artistic style, than with Lucrezia herself.
The castle of Montfort was one of the inspirations for the Fortune School; I loved how its chapel perches at the edge of the cliff.
The well, the window, and the floor tiles all make an appearance in the book; these are all from Chaumont, in the Loire Valley. When Catherine de’ Medici took the beautiful palace of Chenonceau from Diane de Poitiers (Diane had been the mistress of Catherine’s husband, Henry II of France), she gave her Chaumont in recompense. Diane was not pleased, and rarely spent any time there.
This is the Dordogne River, which runs near the fictional Fortune School. Once upon a time it was the border between English Aquitaine and France, which explains why there are so many defensive castles built along it.
The Gouffre de Padirac was the inspiration for the gouffre, or sinkhole, or cenote (take your pick) that plays such an important role in the story. Sinkholes, caves, and underground rivers run all through the Dordogne region, thanks to the soft limestone that is so easily eaten away, and there are legends of witches dancing in the caves by firelight.