The Battle for Sicily's Soul

The rise of the Mafia and the fight to free Sicily from its evil tyranny

Non-Fiction - Historical
290 Pages
Reviewed on 10/16/2022
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Author Biography

Claudine founded her first company, a web development agency, when she was just 23 years old. While growing the business, she also wrote a weekly column in a national newspaper, focusing on current affairs and politics. In 2016 she sold her company and embarked on a new chapter of her life.

She is now a freelance writer, business consultant and start-up mentor, while pursuing her dream of becoming an anthropologist. Her first book, "The Battle for Sicily's Soul" is a gripping account of one of the most violent and powerful criminal organizations in the world, and of the brave men and women who dared to oppose it.


Thirty years have passed since the assassination of Judges Giovanni Falcone and Paolo Borsellino, two men whose integrity and courage in the face of mafia violence made them symbols of hope for a better future in Italy. In these three decades, the fight against organized crime has been an unrelenting uphill battle. The mafia has adapted to changing times and technologies, shapeshifting to remain as relevant and dangerous as ever.
This book is my attempt to remind people of the atrocities that Cosa Nostra has committed, and to show that even in the darkest of times, there are always some people who are willing to fight for justice.
I hope that this book will help to keep the memory of Judges Falcone and Borsellino alive, and that it will inspire others to follow in their footsteps and continue what they started.

    Book Review

Reviewed by Emma Megan for Readers' Favorite

The Battle for Sicily's Soul: The Rise of the Mafia and the Fight to Free Sicily from its Evil Tyranny by Claudine Cassar is a must-read historical nonfiction book. It focuses on the Sicilian Mafia and gives a deeper understanding of the origin of the criminal organization's name. It shows how the most powerful criminal organization in Sicily, Cosa Nostra, manipulated and corrupted Sicilian society and the Catholic Church for decades to suit its criminal purposes. Cassar presents the factors that created the perfect environment for Cosa Nostra to grow and take over the island. This book provides a comprehensive analysis of the criminal society itself. It also takes a look at its history, economic realities, and power hierarchies to truly understand the nature of Cosa Nostra. Claudine Cassar explains how it survived and kept its inner workings veiled in a shroud of secrecy for so long.

The Battle for Sicily's Soul by Claudine Cassar is a well-researched book exposing the disturbing effects of one of the most violent criminal organizations in the world on Sicilian society and the Catholic Church. This book impressed me with its fascinating information on how the Sicilian Mafia infiltrated the local culture. It intrigued me to learn how the movie The Godfather became an inspiration for Cosa Nostra's members. This engrossing account skillfully reveals how the Sicilian Mafia was able to create a false yet appealing narrative that served its members well over the years. It is worth reading as it shows the role of the COVID-19 pandemic in the attempts by Cosa Nostra to re-establish its image in Sicilian society.