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Extended Audio Sample A Thread of Grace, by Mary Doria Russell Click for printable size audiobook cover
3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 3.00 (5,808 ratings) (rate this audio book) Author: Mary Doria Russell Narrator: Jay Gregory Publisher: Penguin Random House Format: Abridged Audiobook Delivery: Instant Download Audio Length: Release Date:
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Set in Italy during the dramatic finale of World War II, this new novel is the first in seven years by the bestselling author of The Sparrow and Children of God.It is September 8, 1943, and fourteen-year-old Claudette Blum is learning Italian with a suitcase in her hand. She and her father are among the thousands of Jewish refugees scrambling over the Alps toward Italy, where they hope to be safe at last, now that the Italians have broken with Germany and made a separate peace with the Allies. The Blums will soon discover that Italy is anything but peaceful, as it becomes overnight an open battleground among the Nazis, the Allies, resistance fighters, Jews in hiding, and ordinary Italian civilians trying to survive.

Mary Doria Russell sets her first historical novel against this dramatic background, tracing the lives of a handful of fascinating characters. Through them, she tells the little-known but true story of the network of Italian citizens who saved the lives of forty-three thousand Jews during the war’s final phase. The result of five years of meticulous research, A Thread of Grace is an ambitious, engrossing novel of ideas, history, and marvelous characters that will please Russell’s many fans and earn her even more. Download and start listening now!


Quotes & Awards

  • Mary Doria Russell’s fans (and aren’t we all?) will rejoice to see her new novel on the shelves. A Thread of Grace is as ambitious, beautiful, tense, and transforming as any of us could have hoped. Karen Joy Fowler, author of The Jane Austen Book Club
  • Fans of Mary Doria Russell’s The Sparrow and Children of God will be thrilled by her masterful new novel. A Thread of Grace is a rich, multi-layered narrative that offers fresh insight into a devastating time in world affairs. A story of love and war, it speaks to the resilience and beauty of the human spirit in the midst of unimaginable horror. It is, unquestionably, a literary triumph. David Morrell, author of The Brotherhood of the Rose and First Blood
  • Essential reading for people who love Italy. You will lose yourself completely in this ecumenical epic of Italians working together to save Jewish refugees during the German Occupation of 1943-1944. Russell has a deep empathy for her characters and writes with genius about the horrors of guerrilla war. This wholly absorbing historical novel ends with perhaps the most moving coda in fictional history. Susan Cahill, author/editor of Desiring Italy and The Smiles of Rome

Listener Opinions

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 by Erinbarbour | 2/20/2014

    " Excellent book - could not put it down and stayed up too late because of that. Interesting to read about how much the Italian peasants assisted and harbored Jews during World War II and the sacrifices that were made. Fictional but based on interviews the author did in Italy. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 by Gail Mchugh | 2/20/2014

    " I thought this was an excellent read. Ms. Russell brought the war home to me. I did not realize what the Italian people faced during the Second World War. I cried for the Jewish population. I cried for the Italian Jews. I cried for the partisans. I cried for all the people who tried to help. I wept for those who died innocently. Thank you Ms. Russell for helping me see a group of heroes I would never have imagined. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 by Chandra | 2/7/2014

    " sad topic but draws you in "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 by Jen Deboskey | 2/7/2014

    " It will take a while to get into because of all the separate characters and plotlines but it is well worth the effort! "

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