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Gina Collia-Suzuki
  • Female
  • United Kingdom
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Something About Me and My Book:
I am an artist and writer and I live on the southwest coast of England, with my husband and eight female rats. I have been an avid (possibly obsessive) collector of Japanese woodblock prints, in particular those by Kitagawa Utamaro, for more than twenty years. Originally a student of Western art, I encountered Japanese woodblock prints for the first time in 1985, whilst on an outing with fellow students to Birmingham Museum & Art Gallery, and was immediately taken by their striking and bold designs. In 1986 I met Jack Hillier, the world-renowned Ukiyo-e scholar, who became my mentor, and our friendship, for which I am immensely grateful, lasted until his passing in 1995. For more than twenty years I have studied the woodblock prints of Utamaro, eventually focusing my research on the specific subjects depicted in his illustrated books and broadsheets.

A few years ago, following a house move, I found myself living with nuisance neighbours. This experience inspired me to write my first work of fiction, 'The Wonderful Demise of Benjamin Arnold Guppy;' a satirical tale about a thrity-something housewife who is driven to murder her elderly neighbour.

"Utamaro Revealed: A Guide to Subjects, Themes and Motifs"
Kitagawa Utamaro is one of the most well-known and admired figures in the history of Japanese art, renowned throughout the world for his portraits of beautiful women. Unrivalled at the height of his career, he is recognised as having been the leading light of the Ukiyo-e School during its golden age, and his influence upon the work of Western artists has been beyond measure. He produced in the region of two thousand woodblock prints during his lifetime, approximately one third of which take their subjects from the licensed pleasure quarter of Edo, with the remainder being made up of images of various popular beauties, pairs of famous lovers, historical and mythical figures, domestic scenes, and the physiognomic studies for which he is best-known.
With 90 reproductions of the artist’s prints, designs grouped and discussed according to subject, and with illustrations of publishers’ marks, artist’s signatures, and the names of figures commonly inscribed upon his works, this reference guide provides the most comprehensive resource for identifying the subjects portrayed in Utamaro’s prints to date.

'The Wonderful Demise of Benjamin Arnold Guppy'
Benjamin Arnold Guppy loved turnips. He loved eating them, but most of all he loved throwing them. He also loved money and pain... extorting a lot of the former and causing an equal amount of the latter. A foul, sour-faced old swindler with a penchant for clucking like a chicken and more than a passing interest in the local postman, he was determined to get his hands on his neighbours' money, regardless of the cost. As it turned out, the price was his life.
'The Wonderful Demise of Benjamin Arnold Guppy' is a tale of blackmail, turnip tossing, and the cold-blooded murder of an incredibly irritating old man.

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At 11:59am on December 7, 2011, Fernando Sobenes said…

Hello Gina. My name is Fernando Sobenes and I want to invite you to read the prologue and the first two chapters of my novel: "The Evil Visitor" in my blog The Evil Visitor

Also you can watch the book trailer.

Best regards,


Gina Collia-Suzuki's Blog

Widow Wreaths Havoc at Funeral Claims Sexy Septuagenarian

Report for The Sea View Mercurial, by Bob Hackitt.

Pat Guppy, well-known local doer of charitable works and widow of Benjamin Arnold Guppy, may face charges of assault, according to local sources, following an attack upon Mrs Floss Littleworth, also a senior citizen of Sea View. The alleged attack took place on the morning of November 5th, this year, when Mrs Littleworth arrived at the graveside of Benjamin Arnold Guppy, to pay her last respects to the man who she claims was her… Continue

Posted on February 9, 2009 at 11:00am

An Interview with Pat Guppy - Part IV

'An Interview with Pat Guppy' for 'Her Ladyshipness Magazine'

Questions posed by Hyacinth Bootley-Smythe

Q: You are very busy arranging for your husband's memorial and so forth. Are you still managing to maintain your charitable works?

A: Of course. Nothing will ever prevent me from being selfless and tending to those in need. I have, within the past fortnight, attended no less than three charity dinners and two luncheons, all in aid of bus shelter number six on Sea… Continue

Posted on February 6, 2009 at 11:00am

An Interview with Pat Guppy - Part II

'An Interview with Pat Guppy' for 'Her Ladyshipness Magazine'

Questions posed by Hyacinth Bootley-Smythe

Q: You chose to have a quiet funeral, with only family and close friends attending. Why was that?

A: Well, as you can imagine, I am such an incredibly popular and well-loved local personage that the guest list, had I not decided to make it a small affair, would have been hundreds of pages long. To give you some idea of how well-loved my dear Benjamin was, the local… Continue

Posted on January 28, 2009 at 11:00am

An Interview with Pat Guppy - Part I

'An Interview with Pat Guppy' for 'Her Ladyshipness Magazine'

Questions posed by Hyacinth Bootley-Smythe

Q: Firstly, I'd like to offer my condolences for the loss of your husband. Perhaps you could tell us a little about your husband?

A: Benjamin was a good and honest man, loved by everyone who knew him. He never took a drink in his life or raised his voice to a living soul. He was a good Christian man, very involved in the church and a doer of charitable works. Very… Continue

Posted on January 26, 2009 at 11:00am

Everyone should almost die at least once

I spent years planning to write, thinking about writing, and talking about writing. What I didn't do for a very long time was actually write. What gave me the kick I needed to get me going? I almost died.

I was watching the X-Files one Sunday night, eating a brand of crisps that I'm not going to name, for fear of being sued (the reason will become clear as I go on), when I began to heat up. My lower legs began to itch, so I scratched them. Then my upper legs began to itch... my lower… Continue

Posted on January 13, 2009 at 7:00am


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