Cristina Pippa

The Viennese Soldier by Cristina Pippa

What’s a girl to do when she’s separated from her man by a world war? Join the Women’s Army Corps and ship out to find him. Otty completes basic training in Des Moines, which couldn’t be farther from Vienna, Austria, where she and her fiancé Fred grew up. She convinces her superiors to change her first assignment from an air base in Texas to overseas training. In Germany, Otty translates interrogations of Nazi prisoners of war and uses her spare time to search for the man she loves, who she fears also wears the enemy’s uniform. Since they lost touch, Fred became involved in a pacifist movement and was imprisoned by the Nazis for treason. One of few survivors in a prison massacre, Fred finally sends a letter to Otty with the help of an American G.I. He still loves her and promises to wait in a small town in Austria until he hears from her. Otty gets leave from her post in Berlin to go directly to the town, only to discover that her childhood sweetheart is no longer there. A soldier believes that Fred tried to sail a raft hundreds of miles down the Danube to Vienna, with Russian snipers firing at him on either sides of the bank. Otty has no choice but to conceal her American uniform and cross into the forbidden Russian district of Vienna in hopes of finding him. The Viennese Soldier is based on a true story of undying love and determination.

Arielle & David: The stakes are always high when you’re writing about the Nazi regime. And that’s certainly true for our heroine and her one true love. We can just see that rafting trip on the big screen! We also love the idea of getting inside the Women’s Army Corps. And you didn’t give away the ending—which is wonderful because we leave the pitch asking, “Well, what happened?!”, to which you get to reply, “Well, you’ll have to read the book.” What can be improved? We don’t get any sense of who these two really are, especially our heroine. There are no real descriptors of her. So it’s hard to fall in love with our featured players. We also found that while the story seems to have all kinds of great twists and turns, the language of the pitch itself is a bit like a book report. Lastly, we’d like to know a tiny bit more about who this is based upon, since you say it’s a true story.