It’s the summer of 1942, and life is starting to become more and more dangerous for Italian Jews like the Russo family.
In their quiet village, Antonio Gallo and Gabriella Russo lived like most youths did – unaware of the hope lost to their parents’ generation but believing in a future for themselves.
As rumors begin to swell about the presence of resistance fighters and a possible American armistice, Germany sends Colonel Weber to Italy and he begins to apply pressure on Caporale Gallo in a desperate effort to retain control of the southern region and its people.
Antonio and his Catholic family are layered with protection from his uncle’s place in Mussolini’s government while Gabriella’s Jewish family is left to the mercy of those around them.
For the two young Italians, the shadow of war begins to darken their plans of a future together when Gabriella’s family is forcibly transported to an internment camp in Ferramonti.
Despite Antonio’s efforts to gain information from his uncle or support from his father, he sets out on a mission to free the Russos from captivity and possible death.
Morals and loyalty begin to collide as people in the small Italian village are torn between doing what’s right and what needs to be done when the fascists and Nazis begin to rip innocent lives apart.
Antonio and Gabriella’s feelings deepen as they near the most dangerous point in their lives, and together they face the fear that every step they take forward risks tearing them apart forever.
Their love and dreams are alive among the ruins of the small town and in the face of constant danger, but eventually, they both begin to wonder if it will be enough.
Read Our Forgotten Year and remember the moments of hope and love that kept their faith alive.
Includes Book Club and classroom discussion questions prepared by the author.