Contessa Sofia de’ Corsi’s peaceful Tuscan home has been upturned by the arrival of German soldiers. Desperate to fight back, she provides shelter, medical aid and any help she can, keeping her efforts secret from husband Lorenzo – who is also passing information to the Allies.
When Maxine, an Italian-American working for the resistance, arrives on Sofia’s doorstep, the pair forge an uneasy alliance. Practical, no-nonsense Maxine promised herself never to fall in love. But when she meets a young partisan named Marco, she realizes it’s a promise she can’t keep.
Before long, the two women find themselves entangled in a dangerous game with the Nazis.
Will they be discovered? And will they both be able to save the ones they love?
I received a copy of this book from Penguin UK -Viking Books UK in return for an honest review.
An aspect of WW2 history that I’ve not read about before this novel captures the menace of an occupying power and the camaraderie of the villagers. The story focuses on a small village in Tuscany, and its Contessa Sofia. It’s a story of courage, danger and friendship as the Italians fight against the Fascist stranglehold of their country.
The story focuses on the women Sofia the Contessa, Maxine an allied spy and Carla and Anna, who work at the Castello. Their friendship sustains them through terrible times and makes this story memorable and motivational. Vivid, sensual imagery and well-researched, historical detail bring the historical setting to life. The characters are authentic and relatable from the vibrance of the Italian women to the menace of the SS Officers.
This is an emotional story exploring the horrors of war and the human cost. Humorous touches and romance balance the poignancy, making it addictive reading.