Sicilian Avengers

Book One

Fiction - Historical - Event/Era
480 Pages
Reviewed on 06/02/2024
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    Book Review

Reviewed by K.C. Finn for Readers' Favorite

Sicilian Avengers: Book One is a work of fiction in the historical fiction, action, and intrigue subgenres. It is best suited to adult readers because it contains some scenes of violence. Penned by author Luigi Natoli and translated by Stephen Riggio, this thrilling historical saga is set in early eighteenth-century Palermo. The novel follows Blasco da Castiglione, a daring orphan adventurer on a quest to uncover his origins. His journey becomes entangled with the Beati Paoli, a secret sect that delivers justice against the oppressive aristocracy. As Blasco navigates a complex plot involving a powerful noble family, he encounters loyalty tests and chivalrous duels. Rich in historical detail and vibrant descriptions of Palermo, this action-packed tale explores themes of love, betrayal, and retribution.

Author Luigi Natoli and translator Stephen Riggio have crafted an exhilarating read that utilizes authentic Italian culture and detailed historical research to offer us a thrilling Sicilian saga about the legendary Beati Paoli, the supposed forerunners of the Mafia. Natoli’s masterful command of narrative transported me to the dark streets and hidden caves of eighteenth-century Palermo, and the meticulous historical detail and vivid descriptions of the city made it come alive as if it was a character all of its own. This same atmospheric detail and confident narration is also applied to Blasco da Castiglione, whose heartfelt journey to discover his origins was captivating. The plot is packed with intrigue and suspense and is also naturally educational as it expands on real history in a seamless and interesting way. The depiction of justice, friendship, and betrayal is a slow-burning theme that gets stronger and stronger as we see our hero put to the test, with Blasco's adventures and duels keeping us on the edge of our seats with brilliantly described action. The translation by Stephen Riggio certainly preserves the story's vibrant atmosphere and historical accuracy. Overall, Sicilian Avengers is a compelling read that beautifully captures the essence of a bygone era in Sicily, and I would certainly recommend it to historical fiction fans everywhere.