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Reviewed by Rabia Tanveer for Readers' Favorite
Goodbye to Italia by Marisa Parker is an enchanting story that takes the reader on a journey back in time and into the lives of her parents. The cover of this biography is beautiful and hints at the rich history inside the pages. I loved the fact that the author took time to talk to her parents, memorize their words, and made their love story eternal. She takes readers on a journey along with the two main characters as they come of age in two very different, yet very dangerous places that are plagued by the effects of WWII.
This is the story of Mariolina Martore and Eugenio Piergiovanni. When our story begins, Mariolina is 6 years old and Eugenio is 17 years old. While Mariolina is living with her mother and grandmother in war ravaged Torino, Italy among disease, hunger and the devastation of the war, Eugenio is fighting as a teenage soldier. He is captured and taken to a prisoner of war camp where he spends 6 years, barely surviving by living through the dry humor he creates in his diaries. Years go by and Mariolina and Eugenio meet at a more peaceful time, yet neither of them is the same. We are taken through a beautiful journey of self-discovery, love, acceptance and courage as we read about how these two find each other, their love and themselves.
Sweet, endearing, heartwarming, emotional and simply lovely, this book is too interesting to put down. The double POV makes the story interesting and ensures that the reader keeps on reading. Eugenio’s years in the POW camp and Mariolina’s journey from an innocent 6-year-old to a bold and confident young woman speaks to the reader. I simply don’t have enough words to explain the feeling this story evoked in me. So good and simply beautiful!