War in Val D'Orcia: An Italian War Diary, 1943-1944

War in Val D'Orcia: An Italian War Diary, 1943-1944

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by Iris Origo
     
 

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A classic of World War II, and in its first American edition, War in Val d'Orcia is Iris Origo's elegantly simple chronicle of daily life at La Foce, a manor in a Tuscan no-man's land bracketed by foreign invasion and civil war.

With the immediacy only a diary can have, the book tells how the Marchesa Origo, an Anglo-American married to an Italian landowner,…  See more details below

Overview

A classic of World War II, and in its first American edition, War in Val d'Orcia is Iris Origo's elegantly simple chronicle of daily life at La Foce, a manor in a Tuscan no-man's land bracketed by foreign invasion and civil war.

With the immediacy only a diary can have, the book tells how the Marchesa Origo, an Anglo-American married to an Italian landowner, kept La Foce and its farms functioning while war threatened to overrun it and its people. She and her husband managed to protect their peasants, succor refugee children from Genoa and Turrin, hide escaped Allied prisoners of war-and somehow stand up to the Germans, who in dreaded due course occupied La Foce in 1944 and forced the Marchesa to retreat under a hot June sun.

Fleeing eight impossible miles on foot, along a mined road under shell fire, with sixty children in tow, she sheltered her flock in the dubious safety of a nearby village. A few days later, official Fascism disappeared, and La Foce was ransacked by the retreating Wehrmacht. Here, as the restoration of La Foce begins, her book ends.

Beyond praise and above mere documentary value, War in Val d'Orcia belongs to the literature of humanity.

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Editorial Reviews

Library Journal
For an insider's picture of Italy during World War II, try Eric Newby's Love and War in the Apennines (Lonely Planet. 1999. ISBN 0-86442-765-4. pap. $12.95), a memoir of his experiences as an escaped prisoner of war in Italy; Anglo-American Iris Origo's inspiring and humane War in Val D'Orcia: An Italian War Diary, 1943-1944 (Godine. 1984. ISBN 0-87923-476-8. pap. $14.95), when she and her Italian land-owning husband protected the peasants and villagers living near them in Tuscany; and Naples '44 by Norman Lewis (Carroll & Graf. Feb. 2005. ISBN 0-7867-1438-7. pap. $12), who came to Italy as an intelligence officer and grew to love the challenging, contradictory country. Copyright 2004 Reed Business Information.

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9781567924688
Publisher:
Godine, David R. Publishers, Inc.
Publication date:
12/10/2012
Sold by:
Barnes & Noble
Format:
NOOK Book
Pages:
165
Sales rank:
522,052
File size:
1 MB

Meet the Author

Iris Origo devoted much of her life to her farm and her writing. In 1943 and 1944 she and her husband converted their farming estate into a refuge for children from the bombed cities of northern Italy and escaped Allied prisoners of war. She died in 1988.

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