Wednesday, October 31, 2012

Review: The Generosity of Strangers When War Came to Fornelli by Thomas A. Antonaccio

And after of months in idle, I had once again placed by fingers in review! Hope you read this book! Lovable character, heart-warming experience, and fantastic motivations. 

The Generosity of Strangers When War Came to Fornelli 
by Thomas A. Antonaccio
Publisher: Thomas A. Antonaccio
Publication Date: September 22, 2012
Format: eBook
Genre: Non-Fiction, War, Biographies
Book Description:
The Generosity of Strangers: When War Came to Fornelli is written in first person, free verse, and consists of a series of vignettes chronicling the real life experiences of a young girl and her family in war-torn Italy in the 1940s. The story is set in the town of Fornelli–a tiny hilltop community in Italy’s mountainous heart.

For Lucia and her family, life in Fornelli is anything but boring. Life is difficult, yet tranquil. But soon the war comes, and life in Fornelli is tranquil no more.

The Generosity of Strangers: When War Came to Fornelli is a true accounting from the eyes of Lucia, about faith, hope, and courage in the midst of war and its aftermath. It poetically conveys how even in desperate times people can open their hearts and rise above adversity.


5 bulbs
Smooth, easy-going, and a light-in-the-heart novel.


This book, The Generosity of Strangers When War Came to Fornelli by Thomas A. Antonaccio, does away from the mainstream idea of how a war novel should be. This is different. I didn't expect this kind of presentation by the author. I thought that this is full of bombs, tanks, corpse and blood which, honestly, I hate very much. He did an unsual attack and doesn't turn out really as a war novel.

This book talks about the life of a little girl named Lucia (who turns out to be the mother of the author and the story of her in the early days) in times of war. Set in Italy, the author retells how the life of his mother's family, yes, it's a true to life story, in the greener side of it. True, that there's no such thing as "GREENER SIDE" of war but at least the author doesn't focus in the dark side. 

The kind of form that this novel has is so rare that we barely read other novels in the format (or I just haven't read so much). The form has its contribution in the development of the story because it opens a door for you  to connect with the character in the personal level. It also brings out the meaning that the author wants to tell his readers even by not telling it explicitly, word for word. The use of such form for this novel is justified. Not all writers can use a certain form with out justifying it to himself as to why he will use such. In the case of  Antonaccio, the form gives a more edge in his sword.

The protagonist's name is Lucia, a little girl born in Fornelli, Italy. The way she was written and packaged was beautiful. A likeable and lovable character. Only few authors can make their characters likeable. Lucia, for me, tends to be my friend. I believe most of the people that had read this will relate to what I am saying. She is nice, friendly, and lovable. As I read the novel to it's end, the more I've been close to Lucia. I feel her fears, her desires, her craves, her need, her joy and all that she felt. A good and well written character makes your novel loved by your readers. I assume that writing of Lucia was prettily done because the author has a real basis to it, basis to how it behaves and all, looking it as if it is real.

The story is good yet I'm not satisified. At first, it doesn't give the feel of excitement to turn another page. No shocking and attention grabbing scenes. But as you go along, you will understand that the novel is not about the kind of work that you had in mind. You will to consider some things because of the nature of it. I love the story. I love how it flows. However, there are lapses that we may spot. Parts that you feel so awkward with and you will now start thinking why the author had written it that way. 

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