Elisabetta, Marco, and Sandro grow up as the best of friends despite their differences. Their friendship blossoms to love, with both Sandro and Marco hoping to win Elisabetta’s heart. But in the autumn of 1937, all of that begins to change as Mussolini asserts his power. In time, everything that the three hold dear - their families, their homes, and their connection to one another - is tested in ways they never could have imagined.
Lisa Scottoline is a #1 Bestselling Author, The New York Times bestselling author and Edgar award-winning author of 33 novels, including her latest work, Eternal, her first-ever historical novel. She also writes a weekly column with her daughter for the Philadelphia Inquirer titled “Chick Wit” which is a witty and fun take on life from a woman’s perspective. Lisa reviews popular fiction and non-fiction, and her reviews have appeared in The New York Times, The Washington Post and The Philadelphia Inquirer. Lisa has served as president of Mystery Writers of America and has taught a course she developed, “Justice and Fiction” at the University of Pennsylvania Law School, her alma mater. Lisa is a regular and much-sought-after speaker at library and corporate events. Lisa has over 30 million copies of her books in print and is published in over 35 countries. She lives in the Philadelphia area with an array of disobedient pets, and she wouldn’t have it any other way.
Q: Who was your favorite character and why?
Q: Did the characters stay with you after you finished the book?
Q: Who did you think Elisabetta should have ended up with? Elisabetta’s story and the prologue raises the question of the paternity of her son. Did that matter to you as you read along and if so, how? Did you keep in mind or forget about it? How do you think her son will react to learning his mother’s and father’s secrets?
Q: Were you aware of the events in the story before you read it?
Q: Do you think what happened in Italy and in Germany could happen in the U.S. or anywhere else, today? Do you think the rise of the right and the resurgence of antisemitism in the U.S. and Europe is a foreshadowing?
Q: How does Marco’s attitude toward the Fascist party change? What attracted him to them? His dyslexia? The feeling of feeling superior, the nationalism, being Italian, the glory of being Roman. Sandro’s family was Jewish but also Fascists at the beginning.
Q: A major difference between Fascism in Italy and Naziism in Germany is that Facism did not begin as antisemitic. In fact, the mayor of Rome was Jewish before Fascism and there was a 50% intermarriage rate? Were you surprised to learn that Hitler imitated Mussolini and not the other way around?
Q: Let’s talk about the meaning of the quote near the end of the book. “Hate was eternal, but above all, so was love. Love was the answer to bridge the divide.