“We always have choices.”
Title: The Light in the Ruins
Author: Chris Bohjalian
Genre: Historical Fiction/Mystery
In 1943, the Rosatis had everything. I villa in Tuscany, royal titles, and a big family. By the end of WWII, the Germans – who the Rosatis essentially invited into their home – have taken most of it away. In 1955, someone starts killing the remaining Rosatis, and Serafina, a Detective who sided with the Partisans when she was just a teenager, is convinced that the murders tie back to the war.
When I began reading The Light in the Ruins, I thought it was going to be a little more of a thriller than it turned out to be. It’s quieter than that. Less murder and mystery and more family saga and historical fiction. Which is really more my cup of tea.
While WWII novels are not rare, the Italian perspective is certainly less common. Italy had a unique role in WWII and I never really thought about how actual Italians felt about their country’s loyalties.
I think this book is going to stay with me for awhile. I just keep thinking about the Rosatis and the decisions they made: whether they could have made different choices and whether the choices they made were for the right reasons.