The Seven or Eight Deaths of Stella Fortuna (Hardback)Juliet Grames (author)
- In stock online
But if Stella Fortuna means 'lucky star,' then life must have a funny sense of humour.
Everybody in the Fortuna family knows the story of how Stella, once the most beautiful girl in the village of Ievoli, the unconventional, fiercely independent young woman who refused to learn to cook and who swore she would never marry, has escaped death time and time again.
From her childhood in Italy, to her adulthood in America, death has seemed to pursue Stella. She has been burned, eviscerated and bludgeoned; she has choked, nearly fallen out of a window, and on one occasion, her life was only saved by a typo.
However, even the best-known stories still have secrets to reveal... and even after a century, Stella's is no exception.
No woman survives seven or eight deaths without a reason. So, how did she? In a tale which spans nine decades, two continents, and one family's darkest, deepest-buried truths, the answer awaits...
Publisher: Hodder & Stoughton General Division
Number of pages: 448
Weight: 752 g
Dimensions: 234 x 159 x 43 mm
'A compulsive, huge-hearted novel about family, home and how women move through the world; you don't read this book, you live it.' - Erin Kelly, author of He Said/She Said
'The story of Stella Fortuna, transported from the hilly villages of Italy to the noisy, smoky, claustrophobic heart of immigrant America is by turns captivating, shocking, heartbreaking and life-affirming. This is no ordinary family epic; it is the story of generations of women who, in conformity and non-conformity, blaze with strength, compassion and formidable will. Writing with a sure hand, Grames brings to us a perspective of the Italian immigrant experience that few have dared to examine ... An extraordinary debut.' - Vaseem Khan
'From beginning to end I was immersed in and fascinated by every mile of Stella's epic journey through life; geographically, temporally, philosophically and emotionally. Passages of lyrical intensity conjure visions of picturesque villages and old-world landscapes, but there is always the jolt of reality - from which Grames does not balk - and the darker aspects of life are drawn with bold frankness, resulting in an emotional force that illuminates every page. A beautifully painted portrait, majestic and masterful; a very fine novel indeed.' - Laura Carlin
'Fresh and intriguing ... gripping.' - Sabine Durrant
'A sweeping story of immigration, family, betrayal and most importantly, one extraordinary woman. This book is gorgeous, harrowing and magical.' - Julie Cohen
'Juliet Grames has written a magnificent debut, creating a deeply felt, richly imagined world based upon her family history. The dark beauty of Calabria and the promise of America sets the stage for Stella's volatile life, which will be a fight to the finish as she survives a brutal patriarchy while navigating complex family ties and expectations. Moody, original and profound. Brava!' - Adriana Trigiani
'Reading The Seven or Eight Deaths of Stella Fortuna is like listening to the rollicking stories of your Italian grandmother - full of memorable characters and speckled with fascinating bits of history. This is a fantastic and timely family story.' - Jessica Shattuck
'This is wonderful storytelling, seamlessly capturing the love and horror at the heart of family. Juliet Grames's novel, tracing the extraordinary life - and deaths - of an ordinary woman, sits the reader down at a well-laden table, and offers a hugely satisfying feast. Delightful.' - Mick Herron
'Juliet Grames's epic novel follows Mariastella Fortuna, the indomitable Italian woman who, in the course of a long life beginning in Calabria and ending in the US, escapes death seven times - or eight, depending who you ask. Stella's life is rich in eccentric characters and unlikely encounters, and she inhabits a world that is tinged with magic but still limited by patriarchal values - and she carries with her a dark family history. It's an extensive, often cheeky, exploration of lineage, fate, and womanhood.' - Buzzfeed
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“An engaging story...”
Juliet Grames writes with incredible confidence. This story is lyrical, sad in parts, humorous in others, with some dazzlingly inventive twists. A family saga unlike any other.
At first I was not sure by this book... More
“Makes you laugh, makes you cry...”
This well accomplished debut novel, in the style of a memoir written by a member of a family, tells the story of an Italian family and mostly focus on two sisters Stella and Tina.
It follows them from Italy to America... More
“A roller coaster of emotions”
This book follows the life of Stella Fortuna from her humble birth in levoli Italy, through childhood, marriage, emigrating across the world to America, motherhood and finally old age. The whole works!
It is a real... More
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