In the late 1800s, the residents of a small village in the Bari region of Italy, on the shores of the Adriatic Sea, made a mass migration to the promised land: America. They settled in Roseto, Pennsylvania, and re-created their former lives in their new home-town to the very last detail of who lived next door to whom. The hardworking Castellucas ...
In the late 1800s, the residents of a small village in the Bari region of Italy, on the shores of the Adriatic Sea, made a mass migration to the promised land: America. They settled in Roseto, Pennsylvania, and re-created their former lives in their new home-town to the very last detail of who lived next door to whom. The hardworking Castellucas work the land outside Roseto. Nella, eighteen, aspires to a genteel life "in town," far from the rigours of farm life. But Nella's dreams of making her own fortune shift when she meets and falls in love with Renato Lanzara, a wordly, handsome, devil-may-care poet who has a way with words that makes him irresistible. Their friendship ignites into a passionate affair that Nella is certain will lead to marriage. When he disappears without explanation, Nella is left with a shattered heart. Five years later, Renato's sudden return to Roseto, just one week before Nella's wedding, leaves her and all the townsfolk shaken. For although Renato has chosen a path very different from Nella's own, they are fated to live together, in the same town, for the rest of their lives.
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I could not put this book down until I finished it. It was so well written. As a first generation Italian/American I felt this book was a true story. Trigiani always makes you feel like you are right in the place she is writing about.
Jun 2, 2007
Tragini is brilliant, down to earth and very Italian. Any Italian or one interested in Italian culture, especially as it related to immigrants to America, will love this story. Her writing is always homey and close, completely bringing you into this family with its loves and pains.
Publishers Weekly, 2004-07-12 Set in early 20th-century smalltown America, Trigiani's fifth novel (after the Big Stone Gap trilogy and Lucia, Lucia) tells a heartfelt but clumsy story of strong women enduring the rigors of farm life and the trials of romantic and familial relations. At its worst, the novel is a morass of incomplete story lines, underdeveloped characters and inconsistent tenses. Still, readers who've fallen for Trigiani's hallmark personages-Italian immigrants living the American dream in rural Pennsylvania-in previous books will delight in meeting these new ones. Nella Castelluca has brains and ambition; she hopes to someday become a teacher. Alas, when her father is injured at work, she must quit school and stay home to help on the family farm. Her first dream slips away, but working farm life turns out to be not so bad, and Nella eventually falls for the dreamy poet Renato Lanzara. But when he skips town, dream two is crushed, and Nella faces a tough reality: marry another man, and move on. Easier said than done, of course, and Trigiani spends the rest of the book drawing out the saga. Although the writing never rises above B-level, the novel does paint a thorough picture of Italian-American family life and the deep pain of lost love. Agent, William Morris. (July) Forecast: Mailings to book clubs and a 13-city author tour should rally Trigiani loyalists, but they may be frustrated by the sloppiness of the author's latest. Copyright 2004 Reed Business Information.
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