by Sandra Odell
I did have a mental image of both the ruins and the house, particularly the staircase—in fact, it was so clear that for a while there I wondered if I was remembering an old photograph or something in a movie. I set out to build a specific repertoire based on that mental image, but I also wanted to cue both Greene and the reader to certain things. He enters the house and gets a precisely calibrated image: a rich, exotic, beautiful house in mourning. Then, he meets Sima Penhallick: a rich, exotic, beautiful woman in mourning.