Interview Jackie Townsend

opics of conversation:

  • Real life versus fiction                        
  • Myths and Truths about The Italian Stallion
  • Dealing with cultural shock
  • What Americans should know before meeting the Italian family of their significant other
  • Why "Imperfect Pairings" is no Eat, Pray, Love...

Jackie Townsend, a native of Southern California, spends a lot of her time in places not her own. As the youngest of four children, she carries with her a strong sense of family to these places, often foreign, and writes about belonging (or not belonging), loss, and love. Townsend received her MBA from U.C. Berkeley and spent eight years on the fast track to becoming a partner with a financial services consulting company before burning out. She then rode the boom all the way up and then all the way down. After coming to terms with what is important in life (being married to an Italian didn't hurt), she began writing and hasn’t stopped since. She just released her second novel, Imperfect Pairings, an exploration of these themes.


Smart, career driven Jamie had not intended to fall in love. And to a foreigner no less, an Italian who doesn't reveal his heritage at first. Jack is short for John, he tells her, but she soon discovers that John is short for Giovanni. Insanely handsome and intense but unreadable, Giovanni is a man of few words. When after two months together she accompanies him to his cousin's wedding in Italy, Jamie learns that he hasn't been back to the troubled family estate in ten years, but with one step upon the rich Italian soil covered in ancient vines, it's as if he never left. Suddenly his language is no longer her language, and Jamie is drawn inexplicably into an Italy that outsiders rarely see--a crumbling villa, an old family scandal, a tragic mother, an estranged father, and a host of spirited Italian cousins. Jack is finally forced to face the destiny he's been renouncing; and Jamie makes a rash decision, unaware that it will change her life forever.