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Publisher's Summary

Winner of France's most prestigious literary prize, set in the unforgiving south of Italy, this is an epic tale of love, lies, and a family's disgrace.

Spanning five generations, the Scorta family saga begins in 1870 with Rocco Scorta Mascalzone, the bastard product of a rape and a notorious scoundrel. Burdened by a legacy of infamous crimes and forsaken loves, its lineage doomed to struggle, the Scortas nevertheless are blessed: with pride and a relentless faith in their own power. Their wealth lies in their memories and their collective belief in the pursuit of happiness.

In a narrative both lyrical and linear, Laurent Gaude interweaves a compelling story with a timeless message and the recollections of old Carmela as she delivers her final confession to the family priest, exposing the Scortas' most deeply buried secret.

Translated by Stephen Sartarelli and Sophie Hawkes.

©2004 Laurent Gaude (P)2005 HighBridge Company

Critic Reviews

"He proves himself capable of painting a rich canvas." (Publishers Weekly)

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