Her book takes place just north of Viareggio, where Franca's Story (memoir) takes place. Whenever Franca and I do readings, it is almost always mentioned by someone in the crowd. This may be because Franca's father also helped Jewish children escape with the aid of the local priest.
I loved this book. It covers a part of World War II that isn't often written about.
Very meaty book about Italy's struggles near the end of World War Two. I liked many of the characters: Renzo, Claudette, Mirella, Tomitz, Werner... I wonder if there were too many characters, however. I got confused from time to time and found myself flipping frequently to the character list at the front. I might have cut some of them out, not named them, or shortened some of their stories...although I appreciate the thorough research Russell put into the whole book. At the end I was disgusted with war, war at large, and how many lives it takes. I never knew about the Italian partisan effort to fight the German troops: very interesting, amazing. It was a little confusing keeping all the politics straight. I might have chopped the whole story some, but maybe that would have taken away from its rich denseness... It would have made it easier to follow, though... Overall, a good read. Touching in parts. Educational.