Time to Journey Home

Non-Fiction - Genealogy
277 Pages
Reviewed on 03/03/2020
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Author Biography

Michael Pedretti is the author of eight books: Time to Journey Home, Begetters of Children, The Book of Agnes (translated into Italian—Il libro di Agnes), Diary of Giovanni Vener: An Immigrant's Journey to the Heart of America, Life of Peter, La Storia di San Bernardo, the dog and i and The Inside Story of Movement Theatre International’s Mime and Clown Festivals covering the history and development of the longest running international theater festival in America.
Pedretti traveled to Italy several times to encounter the small valley in Northern Italy that his ancestors called home for a thousand years before immigrating to a small Midwestern town in the mid-nineteenth century. There he discovered his ancestors were kind, creative and empathetic people. He became inspired to write a twelve-book American epic titled The Story of Our Stories covering many generations in a family saga that highlights their contributions to and perspectives on life. While there he researched the genealogical roots of the main family of his stories. More importantly, he experienced the places and met the people who still live in the communities he has written about. He is over halfway through writing the twelve-volume epic called The Story of Our Stories, which tells the journey of an archetypical American family, starting from the earliest human mother right through the next generation, with a focus on the last families to live in Europe and the first families to settle in America in the second half of the nineteenth century.

    Book Review

Reviewed by Ruffina Oserio for Readers' Favorite

Time to Journey Home: Story of Our Stories by Michael Pedretti brilliantly documents the author’s journey home to his ancestral roots. In this account, the author decides to visit a small valley in Italy where his forebears lived for a thousand years before moving to a Midwestern town in the mid-nineteenth century. While most epic tales explore physical prowess, war, and incredible feats, this epic tale explores the unique kindness and empathy of his ancestors: “No, our story is hidden in the mothers, ‘who long since left the shores of craving, supremacy, and war to explore generosity, affection, and creativity.’” Here is a story that involves many people, one that looks at a unique and essential element — the power of kindness and the place of the woman in our history.

Time to Journey Home: Story of Our Stories by Michael Pedretti is well-researched and readers feel the excitement of exploring their own past or revisiting their family history to uncover those human strengths that define them and that give them a vision. Michael Pedretti is a great storyteller with a unique sense of history and geography. He unearths gems of a civilization that can easily be lost in a selfish and consumerist culture like ours, where everyone fights for themselves, and where the most elemental of human values are quickly being replaced by a drive that is ego-centric. The writing features wonderful imagery, like the gorgeous descriptions of places like Genoa. Time to Journey Home is both enlightening and entertaining, a non-fiction narrative that compels the reader to look back and learn to read history from a new perspective. This author redefines the idea of epic.

K.C. Finn

Time to Journey Home is a work of non-fiction focusing on ancestry, genealogy, and feeling like you know where home is, penned by author Michael Pedretti. Focused on his own personal family history and genetic background, this is the journey of the author’s inspiration after finding the valley in Northern Italy where his ancient ancestors had come from. Inspired by their tales of creativity and kindness, Pedretti composes an epic in their honor that celebrates the women of the family especially and subverts the old fashioned genre of epic fiction which is not usually focused on peacetime. What results is a charming record of family history that is highly engaging to read.

Author Michael Pedretti takes his readers on a very atmospheric journey as he rediscovers the history of his people who came to Genoa, Wisconsin in the mid-19th century and brought their Italian influences, culture, and spirit with them. Finding connections that are new but also somehow familiar, the author relates this tale in a narrative that invites us in as friends but also weaves like that of an old fashioned storyteller from the very time period that the book discusses. There is much to learn on an educational level about this little known culture, and also a poignant overall message about us as human beings and our connection to one another now, and in the past. Overall, Time To Journey Home is a charming work that is definitely recommended for anyone keen to learn more about heritage.

Lesley Jones

In April 2009, Michael Pedretti makes an important pilgrimage from Wisconsin to his ancestral home in Northern Italy, where his ancestors had lived since 840 AD. Michael retraces the steps of his forebearers and learns so much about their culture, traditions, and life. He discovers important landmarks and documents which reveal a people of enormous kindness and strength. Michael also documents his ancestors' arrival in the USA 150 years ago and the determination they had when faced with hardship. While many historical works focus on the bravery of famous leaders and the wars they won, we learn that the kindness and determination of women set in motion the moral example of how to live authentically. With beautiful photography throughout, you will truly join Michael on his journey of self-discovery in Time to Journey Home.

Time to Journey Home by Michael Pedretti is an inspiring work written from the heart. The detailed research into the cultures and traditions of his ancestors is remarkable. The photography really helps to transport you into the lives of his ancestors. I found it astounding that there was a family still using materials such as the Ollare stone and traditional methods to make cookware. I was aware that Michael was quite a spiritual person, which gave him remarkable insight into the thoughts and feelings of his ancestors. This was really apparent when he sat in that rocking chair owned by his ancestors. His visually descriptive writing transports you into the mountains of San Bernado. I also thought the case he made about the heroes in history was right on point and one we should never forget. In a world filled with empty values of selfishness and consumerism, it is the simple acts of kindness that will truly stand out in history.

Rabia Tanveer

Time to Journey Home is the first part in The Story of Our Stories series by Michael Pedretti. This is the story of the author’s journey as he travels backs to his roots and finds out more about his ancestors. He comes from a big family, being the 12th child. He always craved more information about his parents and grandparents. He wanted to know what their youth was like and how they lived. So Michael made the decision to trace his ancestors back to the simple days when food was plentiful and technology wasn’t that great. He realized that the women of many generations ago were as amazing as now; that these women had an open heart and mind, one that allowed them to love with their whole being and fight with their whole self. He invites the readers to join him on his journey of discovery as he unravels the secrets one step at a time.

Michael Pedretti has done an impressive job of tracing his roots back and finding something incredible. How many of us know where our great-great-grandparents shared their wedding vows or know where our ancestors are buried? I don’t think most of us even know the names of our great-grandparents. I am in awe at how the author combined all his information into Time to Journey Home where you will travel with the author and discover new things with him. The narrative is very smooth and active, although it is written in the first person. I always wanted to know more, I wanted to see what he found next on his journey. The pictures provided, the family tree and the information he gathered added to the experience of reading this unique yet fascinating book. Richly detailed and incredibly well-written. I am now looking forward to the next books in the series.