They still follow.
To avoid shadows, live in the dark.
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, crime, ethnicity, gangs, history, homophobia, love, misogyny, mythology, poverty, realism, superstition, violence, weddings
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I thought this was fascinating - well written, remarkably vivid, and a truly idiosyncratic insight into a world of which most of us are only peripherally aware, and to which we certainly have no access. I loved the mix of English and Italian idiom, the sharply painted characters, the scenery, and the strong sense that this is an adult world as perceived through a child's eyes - albeit a child who is, in some ways, old for his years. This book set the time, place and characters brilliantly - it's a very well realised world, and one that I took great pleasure in visiting. There are some really powerful moments: the death of Vito, bludgeoning of the kittens, the killing of Salvatore’s puppies. The image of the elderly woman labouring up the mountain with her mattress is profoundly haunting; I found myself thinking about her long after I stopped reading. The child’s view gives the reader clarity of detail without moral judgement, a perspective that reminded me of the way in which Rudolfo Anaya’s ‘Bless Me Ultima’ is narrated. One can clearly imagine how a young boy might be affected by listening to a man who has shot and killed his wife in the face complain about receiving a mere eight months in prison, before the grandfather “roared with laughter” about this because he considered the woman too ugly to be looking at other men. The horrific misogyny you relate is compounded by the narrator’s dispassionate perspective. There are also some beautifully understated moments, such as the demonstration of the culture of machismo working on the narrator when he insists he is sweating rather than crying over Lucia, or the harsh view of life taken by the man with the porcupines, who says that they are the most human animal he’s ever seen before telling the boys his plans to fatten them up and eat them. The tales of poverty and superstition, such as the sacrifice of Maura Ricotta’s finger, call to mind the neglect of rural southern Italy Carlo Levi documents in ‘Christ Stopped at Eboli’. My comment to the author, who can clearly write, would be to focus on storytelling. Frequently with memoir, we have to ask ourselves (rather brutally) why readers will care about an unknown individual. This book has the setting and the characters to engage readers almost instantly, but I think it needs a stronger storyline to really become an irresistible read. It wasn't entirely clear to me what this book was about thematically, by which I mean I didn't have as strong a sense of an overarching story, theme or message beyond the straight narrative of the memoir. So whereas ‘Angela's Ashes’ is similarly a story of a childhood in a (to most readers) exotic environment, that book also is about the family at large, about his mother of course, about Ireland more generally, and about what it takes to escape. These are not necessarily themes that are relevant to ‘Sicilian Shadows’, but I did find myself wanting more with this - not in terms of detail, but in terms of a 'big story' that would expand this fascinating book beyond the individual and make it more interesting and more relevant to a broader readership. There are also a few points on style that might help with the polishing of the manuscript. There is the occasional awkward turn of phrase; it might help to read your work aloud to make sure that sentences have a pleasing flow. I do recommend that you look carefully at punctuation to make your meanings clearer, because sometimes it was necessary to read sentences over to be sure of what you were saying. The main strength of the book is the visceral, real power with which it grips the reader. To make the best use of this you do need to think about how you’re going to structure the story so that it forms a satisfying narrative arc. I’m not sure how you plan to close the book, although I assume it will come round to the information we are given about Salvatore at the beginning. An expansive ending that opens out the broader themes in ‘Sicilian Shadows’ would create an even more enthralling read and maximise the book’s commercial potential.
I don't know if the author of this book is lying when he says this is a true account with the names and places altered. I don't know anything about Italy or Sicily or how the Mafia operates outside of what I've seen in the news or in movies. I don't know if any of the descriptions of place, of scene or murder are authentic. I don't know if the author's grief and longing are real.But I do know this:Whether or not there are any facts in this book, every single word rings true. Authonomites sit up and take note. If you want to learn what you need to know about writing a thriller or real people or a place that you want your readers to believe they can actually visit, you could do a lot worse than SICILIAN SHADOWS but you are absolutely not going to do better. Not on this site and not on mot bookshelves.Backed. With pleasure.
Hi Francesco. Sicilian Shadows. (I am commenting having read 10 ex 10 chapters). Well, I think you can tell from the fact I read all 10 chapters posted in one sitting that you have a gripping tale to tell -- and one that is very effectively told. It is not only the subject matter but the way you have crafted it to unfold as a series of punctuated explosions...with each unforseen impact hitting home like an iron fist in a velvet glove...that keeps the reader hooked. Anyone expecting a romanticised homage to the supposed bucolic nirvana that is rural Sicily is going to suffer a rude awakening! This is most definitely not an Italian version of Peter-Mayle-in-Provence! A clash of national cultures fuses in the person of one small boy...at times a passenger at the mercy of events but always a shrewd analyst of all he surveys. I am conscious when reading this that it is not a novel (although it would make a great one!...and one of its key strengths is the 'novelistic' style in which it is written). Great descriptions and a sympathetic narrative voice. One of the shocking aspects to this is the level of violence overshadowing everything -- whether aimed at people or animals. As a cat (and dog) lover, I read Ch 2 between my fingers with a knot in my guts...and Ch 7 was (almost!) enough to turn me vegetarian. Of course, the violence meted out to the animals also foreshadows that aimed at the people. I know the parts of Surrey you mention very well and I can see that they are a world away from a Sicilian village. I've never been to Sicily. My grandfather, who fought his way through Italy with the British Eighth Army in WW2, spoke of the beauty of Palermo...and if I ever visit I might now remain there rather than venturing further afield! BTW two personal highlights: the "I should have been English' lament defined through cricket(!) and the visit of Sinatra at the end of Ch 10...which could have come straight from the pages of my all-time fave author, James Ellroy. Highly impressive. Highly backed. ATB Simon (Little Bastard)
Incredible! So vital it grips the vitals. I almost dread what is to come but realise I will have to read it. Interested in the comment by Tim Roux about the parallels with Pagnol. Can entirely see why. You have a flair for editing actions just like a good film director. Not a detail unchosen for its wider implications, not a detail too many. It is also the hallmark of a good writer. many many congratulations. This surely has to expose HC to real scrutiny.
Back it? I want to buy it!When I was 19, I spent a year in Aix-en-Provence near Marseilles in Southern France, and had the great good fortune that my visit coincided with the death of Marcel Pagnol (although it was perhaps unluckier for him).Looking for a French writer to read, he was the obvious choice as he was Provence’s most famous writer, playwright and film director.Pagnol rapidly became one of my favourite artists (as did Picasso who also lived and worked there, and who also died there in the year before I arrived). You may know Pagnol for ‘Jean de Florette’ and ‘Manon des Sources’, or for his wonderfully evocative Marseilles quayside romantic theatrical comedies ‘Marius’, ‘Fanny’ and ‘Cesar’, but even better than these are his autobiographies ‘The Glory of My Father’, ‘The Country House of My Mother’ and ‘The Time of Secrets’.Pagnol wrote as if with a stiletto crafted in precious metals with which he stabs you passionately and repeatedly through the heart while looking you unflinchingly in the eye.Francesco Scannella writes like that too.There are more basic parallels. Pagnol wrote about his childhood amid the abject poverty of the South of France where vendettas lasted through generations, where the next village was a foreign and hostile land, and where cunning was more cherished than honesty.In Francesco’s case, he was born in Southern England of Sicilian parents. His mother soon returned to Sicily while his father stayed on with Francesco hoping to accumulate enough money to be able to live back in his home village in some luxury one day. When Francesco was seven his father decided that he had been a foreigner long enough and hauled Francesco off to the Sicilian village of Mussomeli in a world turned not merely upside down but back to front as well, where violence, lying and cheating were admirable, picking up litter in the street was unpardonable, and where you judged people less by their own virtues than by the power of their connections.There was the mafia of course, but there was also its exact copy as played out by every child in the village in rigid order of hierarchy - the gang leader, his juvenile Capo, the rest.‘Sicilian Shadows’ is incomplete as it appears here but it is notable not only for the visceral precision of the writing but also for the way it is constructed with hooks, threats, echoes and inverses. In short ‘Sicilian Shadows’ is evocative. Within seconds you are right alongside Francesco, watching him face his dangers, feeling his confusion, relieved at his triumphs, and smelling the same blood and terror as he is smelling.This is one for my physical bookshelf. I am just waiting for the book.
This is really excellent
Hi. I have just read the first few pages of this, and I am immediately struck by the quality of the writing, which is really excellent. It's tight, articulate and punchy and I'm terribly impressed. I agree with one of your other commenters below, 'Authonomites take note'! Starred.Maybe you'll take a look at 'Jelly-Boy'. I'd be very grateful.
Hello Francesco , I don't know if you are still active on this site , but I was very interested in your memoir of Sicily , an island with a perennial fascination. You are quite right to say your perspective is unique, at least in literary terms. I think you have a natural gift for writing - the style is clear and incisive and conveys, easily ,a huge amount of very interesting information. Would you be able to look at my novel 'A Buccaneer' set amongst Pirates in the 17th century, with best wishes , Strachan Gordon
Sicilian ShadowsKudos on your standing on the site. I was - at last- drawn to your book, late to the fair, obviously, because of a review you wrote on another book and then your pitch. I was adopted into an Italian (Sicilian) American New York home of honest craftsmen and ever present but ignored New Jersey mafia, so your book was so appealing in what it offered. I was not disappointed. Your ability to place us in this world is often breathtaking and I admire your putting your memories into works that are so absorbing. If you do a rewrite based on your Harper Collins review, I would love to read your revisions. Until then, please accept my stars and additional backing, although it doesn't look like you need it.LenoreSurviving the Seaweed
The editor’s desk, was it worth? Was your book reviewed by HarperCollins? Did you receive a book publishing offer, or have other publishing houses expressed and interest in you book? We have found the comments and suggestions from the other authors on Authonomy helpful in revising our book, but were just curious as to the benefits of landing at the top.CC BrownDark Side
Francesco, sincere congratulations on your review.On the forums you asked where to go from here, and if the HC editor is correct, then you have to look at your overall structure. I suggest doing a storyboard or chapter and scene outline. There's free software to help you-- yWriter--or you can do it "manually." What you might use is the three-act structure or Hero's Journey. It's an old standby but extremely popular with agents and publishers.Creating and maintaining narrative drive is the key, and that includes many things since a novel is organic. Reading between the lines of the HC critique, I suspect that one thing your MC might be missing is an overriding goal, and then, perhaps (since I haven't read your novel in detail), individual scene goals for your character. Once you've taken another look at these things, feel free to contact me at email@example.com with your scene list or storyboard and I'll be more than happy to take a look at it--for what that's worth!Cheers,Sheryl
I found this short exposition intriguing enough to want to read more.
I haven't finished reading yet, but I can't stop. If this was sitting on my bedside table tonight as a complete and printed work, I know I wouldn't put it down - I would sit to the wee small hours and finish it! Chapter 2 ... I have a little boy .... he's soft as putty - and I know how he would react to having to stand and watch his kittens being smashed to death. I've also watched when he's been introduced to people he'd rather not have to talk to - yes they do skulk behind you don't they! The writer understands children and brings this little boy and the others in the book to life with such clarity. Backed with pleasure ... and now I'm off to read some more!
FrancescoSo far I've read your Introduction and prologue and find myself getting drawn into this unusual mafia story. I particularly liked your first line 'I should have been English' and 'I was the one who was responsible' at the end of the Prologue. One thing that did grate a bit though was a glaring split infinitive - 'he wanted to desperately tell me something'. Generally speaking though it seems well written and I'm left wondering what happens next - so I expect I'll get back to it and find out.Jim H
SICILIAN SHADOWS - 7/14/2010An invigorating and unique style. It fits the story well and cements the mood. From the 7 chapters I read, it seems credible and the dialogue is realistic. Although a dark story, it is a fascinating read. The only comment I can offer is that a prologue is an event that occurs prior to the main story, not during or after. After reading the prologue in your story, I was a bit confused as to just when this occurred. It reads as if the characters are adults in the prologue, but the story starts in their childhoods.I favor down to earth stories with realism and unabashed writing. Good luck with this.Marc - Where's The Ivy
will certainly have a read. Please give your opinion on ' the compulsive traveller'. Real life drama with humour, drama, suspense and travel. Thanks Mike
This is possibly the best book on authonomy I've read so far. It's very readable and Franco is a great and likeable character.
This is quite possibly the best book I've read on authonomy so far. Very readable! And Franco is a brilliant character.
Mushkil Gusha wrote 47 minutes ago [reply] [delete] Congratrulations, Francesco.M.view all messages between me and Mushkil Gusha report abuse Biffo's Dog wrote 8 hours ago [reply] [delete] Hey hey. Woot!view all messages between me and Biffo's Dog report abuse bfloxword wrote 10 hours ago [reply] [delete] I appreciate your backing, in the past, for my little collection of writing. May I ask your help to get my epublishing material more active? Please go to smashwords and download a free copy in the format you prefer of Twin Beeches -- an Illinois Love Story. More of a historical novel than a love story, TBAILS received much praise while on Authonomy and still is the top rated work on a smaller stage, Worthy of Publishing.Thanks!,Paulhttp://www.smashwords.com/books/view/15604view all messages between me and bfloxword report abuse Jared wrote 12 hours ago [reply] [delete] Hey, top man! So happy to see you get your gold star, one of my favourite books on the site.Jared view all messages between me and Jared report abuse Anna Rossi wrote 14 hours ago [reply] [delete] Many Congratulations on your gold star, Frank. Very well deserved. May your terrific book sail to the bookshops very soon.Lots of luckAnna x view all messages between me and Anna Rossi report abuse
Congratulations Francesco. Very well deserved. Lynne, Brooklyn Bridge.view all messages between me and Lynne report abuse Sofia Moon wrote 24 minutes ago [reply] [delete] Hi Frank,I wonder if you would considering backing 'The Eternal Truth' for me?Let me know if you post any more work here.Sofiaview all messages between me and Sofia Moon report abuse Mark Deans wrote 2 hours ago [reply] [delete] Well done on getting on the list. I've added the first passage containing Maori to Amokura, and would appreciate your comments the way I've handled the language. My first instict is to leave it without footnotes, but have added translations here (not accurate) as people who have read it say they prefer them. I'm trying here to convey the alienation of first contact between cultures, but there's alienation and alienation! What do you think. Congratulations again, and best of luck for your book, I'll read it when I've finished uploading mine.view all messages between me and Mark Deans report abuse TMNAGARAJAN wrote 4 hours ago [reply] [delete] CongratulationsTMN"NEVER LOSE..."view all messages between me and TMNAGARAJAN report abuse lbrammer1992 wrote 4 hours ago [reply] [delete] congratulations on making it to the deskview all messages between me and lbrammer1992 report abuse cesislo wrote 4 hours ago [reply] [delete] Congratulations on your success, and may you enjoy more success.view all messages between me and cesislo report abuse Francis Albert McGrath wrote 6 hours ago [reply] [delete] Well done!Frankview all messages between me and Francis Albert McGrath report abuse fletcherkovich wrote 7 hours ago [reply] [delete] Hi Francesco.Congratulations for the success of your book. You deserve the golden star because your book is simply amazing.Good luck to your writing career.FletchSTORIES FROM A LEAKING MIND
Suzie Q wrote 8 hours ago [reply] [delete] Dear Francesco,Congrats!!!!!Love, Susie :)view all messages between me and Suzie Q report abuse Cait wrote 8 hours ago [reply] [delete] Congrats, Francesco! Now we can all relax... :o]view all messages between me and Cait report abuse SiCorbz wrote 8 hours ago [reply] [delete] Very many congrats Frank. Richly deserved...and I am very very pleased.Hope they do a proper review.CheersSimonview all messages between me and SiCorbz report abuse hkraak wrote 8 hours ago [reply] [delete] Congratulations!!view all messages between me and hkraak report abuse J_D wrote 8 hours ago [reply] [delete] Congrats..... the star looks good on you *smile*view all messages between me and J_D report abuse .·:*¨Amanda¨*:·. wrote 8 hours ago [reply] [delete] Congrats Franco!It's a well deserved star.view all messages between me and .·:*¨Amanda¨*:·. report abuse BJD wrote 8 hours ago [reply] [delete] CONGRATS.............. Frank !!!!!!!!!!!!!Thank god that part is over !!!See ya :)
minx2minx wrote recently [reply] [delete] Congratulations and good luck. Lizzie Scott :-)view all messages between me and minx2minx report abuse Shayne Parkinson wrote 21 minutes ago [reply] [delete] Congratulations, Francesco - your book is one of my Authonomy favourites. Very best wishes for the next stage.view all messages between me and Shayne Parkinson report abuse PATRICK BARRETT wrote 26 minutes ago [reply] [delete] Congratulations Frank - we are delighted for you & hope you get a good review. Best wishes - P & Pview all messages between me and PATRICK BARRETT report abuse Barry Wenlock wrote 1 hour ago [reply] [delete] BIG CONGRATS!Best wishes,BarryLittle Krisna and the Bihar Boysview all messages between me and Barry Wenlock report abuse jez1982 wrote 2 hours ago [reply] [delete] Francesco!!Yippee!! WOO HOO!! Brilliant!! I'm so happy for you!! Congrats!!! I had your book on my shelf the past week; I doubt it helped much, but I was delighted to do it!! I'm so proud of you!Geraldview all messages between me and jez1982 report abuse Roxanne Kade wrote 2 hours ago [reply] [delete] Congratulations Francesco! Best of luck - Roxy, Therianview all messages between me and Roxanne Kade report abuse crazy mama wrote 2 hours ago [reply] [delete] I knew you'd make it!!! Well done!! Congratulations!!view all messages between me and crazy mama report abuse William Holt wrote 5 hours ago [reply] [delete] Francesco,Congratulations! I hope the review from HC is a good one.Billview all messages between me and William Holt report abuse Amylovesbooks wrote 5 hours ago [reply] [delete] Congrats, Frank! Now the waiting begins, right? ;) view all messages between me and Amylovesbooks report abuse Geveret wrote 6 hours ago [reply] [delete] Congrats, Frank! Best of luck with the HC review!view all messages between me and Geveret report abuse Jambi wrote 7 hours ago [reply] [delete] Hi Francesco,First of all, congratulations in securing a spot on the Editor's desk for review! Fantastic!Secondly, thanks so much for backing and commenting on Fringe. Your comment absolutely made my day! And coming from you, made it even more special. Here's to a great review from Harper and a publishing contract!Cheers! Jan, Fringe of DarknessP.S. BJD backed me a few days ago and sent me to you. Thanks again.view all messages between me and Jambi report abuse EltopiaAuthor wrote 7 hours ago [reply] [delete] Congratulations on being selected for review. What an honor!F. Ellsworth Lockwood"The Final Cruise"view all messages between me and EltopiaAuthor report abuse COOKIE GAWAIN wrote 7 hours ago [reply] [delete] Well you did it congrats on your gold star. Cookie Gawain, 'Being & Tatterings.'view all messages between me and COOKIE GAWAIN report abuse Manolya wrote 7 hours ago [reply] [delete] Dear Francesco,Congratulations on your book being selected by Harper Collins:)I am truly happy for you and wish you all the very best with your book- I cannot wait to see it on the book stands!Please let me know when it does because I look forward to buying it.Once again, thank you for the kindness you showed me as a new writer on this site- you were one of the first to back my book and give me helpful advice- cheers!Warm regards,Manolya- Love in No-Lands xview all messages between me and Manolya report abuse Bamboo Promise wrote 7 hours ago [reply] [delete] I am so happy you have made it this month. view all messages between me and Bamboo Promise report abuse wannabe1966 wrote 7 hours ago [reply] [delete] Congratulations on your review, Francesco! I wish you nothing but the best in your literary career! Cliff, 'High Mesa'view all messages between me and wannabe1966 report abuse Ariom Dahl wrote 7 hours ago [reply] [delete] hi Francesco, well done.Congratulations and all the best!Ariomview all messages between me and Ariom Dahl report abuse Elizabeth Wolfe wrote 7 hours ago [reply] [delete] Dear Francesco,Congratulations on making the top 5! You deserve it. Best of luck with the editors!Regards,Elizabeth Wolfe (Memories of Glory)view all messages between me and Elizabeth Wolfe report abuse bonalibro wrote 7 hours ago [reply] [delete] You did it, Frank, congratulations. Now let's see what they have have to say, or if they will say anything. view all messages between me and bonalibro report abuse Nancy Bush wrote 8 hours ago [reply] [delete] 6-30-2010Wed 4:22 PMDear Francesco - Congratulations to you! I hope that you have a nice evening planned to celebrate!Nancy Bush
Meh ... I'm not really into fictionalized histories like this. The story doesn't sound all that compelling. Redline: "REWRITTEN AND WITH NEW CHAPTERS ADDED.PLEASE COMMENT IF YOU WOULD LIKE ME TO RETURN THE READ!"
Congrats, Francesco. Knew you'd make it.Kevin
I like your opening, and the statement of your conundrum. "I should be English". I feel that I should be American. And maybe one day I will. This deep seated missing identity makes your first chapter very endearing. I understand why it is ranked so high. I have a silly suggestion: have you considered using "Ombre" as your title? I know, kinda late for that. Anyway, backed!
Franco, Thanks for backing Pegalore and your very kind words. There weren't many words but they said an awful lot and I appreciate them.I've read the Introduction and the Prologue and if that's all I was interested in, that would have been enough to back the book. But when your book eventually comes off my bookshelf, it will remain on my watchlist and I will be able to read more, whenever I want, without hunting for it. Congratulations on a superb piece of writing and Good Luck with the editors. Hudson.
I like this book because it gives an insight into a culture of 'family values', so beloved by the right-wing, taken to its logical extreme.
This is a good read. I hadn't read it until now because the pitch actually put me off (it's not bad: I just don't like memoirs/pseudo memoirs very much), but having started to read it I'm hooked. What sticks out? The good writing, the hook in the prologue, mashed kittens :( , memorable descriptions. Good luck with this - you desrve it.J.S.WattsA DARKER MOON
Hi! I read the first couple of chapters referred by a friend of yours and I love historical fiction! I think you do a great job with descriptions and realistic dialogue. I haven't had time to read all of it but I definitely like it so far. Backed and if you have time please take a look at my novel. thanks!EmilyAftermath
Francesco,I read and backed your book months ago when I was first on the site and remembered that I loved it. Your rewrite is BEAUTIFUL! I can tell you've put in long hours polishing--nice work. As I took my book down for massive rewrites and have recently put it back up, I'm happy to back your book again! Good luck.Jan, Fringe of Darkness
Yep, this is truly great writing. You have a great range, from horribly vivid (the assassination, the kittens) to very subtle (the condescension of the "kind" English teacher wishing Francesco a "lovely life back home"). Deservedly high on the list, I wish you all success!Wei (Kunlun)PS one small typo noted: faint mewing, not feint mewing.
As a Sicilian American..roots in Marsala...and dealing with similarities while growing up in Brooklyn, NY...I happily back this book and identify with it well...Good luck and I hope the editors love it as much as I.RC ShiversPeninsula
Dear Frank,I have read all of chapters one through the beginning of chapter 7. You are a master with words and evoking mood and setting. You have lived through most of this, but you have a gift when it comes to putting it into words.My loss is that I no longer wish -- at my age -- to deal with murder and lesser violence. The kitten saga almost ended your story for me. I believe that one of Dante's worst levels of Hell is devoted to kitten killers and others of their ilk!My loss is that I won't be finishing your book. But you have my kudos and my backing.Ancient Reader
Okay. I have read the summary. I have run into a writer whose words have convinced me to open his book. Thanks. Here goes.
There used to be a blend of fiction and fact which was often called 'faction' - and this seems to fall into that category quite easily. There is a good narrative flow and enough Sicilian-Italian sprinkled in it to make it ring right, without it being intrusive and pushing the reader out of the story. Hopefully it will be completed by the time it hits the desk.Read and backed with pleasure.
Wow. When I started reading I was immediately enveloped in the kind of prose I could only dream of creating. You have an incredible talent for descriptive narrative, bringing to life through sight, scent and texture your characters and their suroundings. Beautifully written and deserving of publication. I would buy this book not only for myself but as a gift to others as I am confident it will always be well-received. Backed.JennyRemember Newvember
Franceso,This book really does catch my attention; especailly for it to be based on a true story! The title is a huge stand-out! I back you 100%Rob
Interesting setting and story. Backed.Steven LloydTHE AUDACITY OF HOPE AND CHANGE
Hi Francesco.Your book " Sicilian Shadows" is superbly written in a first person-point of view. You bring your readers to the real action through your eyes. The opening narration is really interesting and every word of discription is effective in creating mental images. When I continued reading it, I found this particular struggle very remarkable between your English breeding and your Sicilian blood and how you handle it makes me feel that you are a writer. Plus, your characterizations seem to be acting so real and that, the messages that you want to convey are very powerful. I enjoy reading this because I felt your passion and your heart in this book. You simply show the realities of life that keep hunt humanity, the knowing of self-conflict, the acceptance of the pastand the beauty of being alive.I am happy to have read another quality product of literature from a very sensible writer. This book is so moving and very inspiring. It makes me believe that I am watching a live real life story before me. To the author, two thumbs up for your creative mind. I am pleased to BACK this book.Anyways, I am also working hard to get my qualities of writing improved. Any comments of constructive suggestions that would help me develop my writing styles, will be appreciated and if it deserves your support for backing, I will be honored.Good luck to you and your writing career.Fletch.
great writing and a great storyline. Backed!
This is an absolute winner and I support it with my heart!Johanna KernMaster and the Green-Eyed Hope
I have read four chapters in your book and I will return to read more. What word to describe it... gritty... cruel... strong, NO I have it compelling. It is a compelling read even though I love cats. I am happy to back your book.Mark Mane Kidnapped: The President's Family and other titles
Backed with pleasure and I wish you every success!k.j. fletcherGrave Detective
Sicilian Shadows.Years ago, I wrote my M.A. thesis on “The Godfather”.I wish Sicilian Shadows had been around then, to add body to Puzo’s work.You, Francesco, have come out with a blend to rival any single …Backed.Azam Gill “Blasphemy!”
it makes you believe it is real if you had any doubt. also, it makes you want to read more. the thoughts can be followed well.
I have to say that I began this book purely for self satisfactory reasons. For more years than I can remember I spent my summers in Chiramonte Gulfi, which is a little mountain village near Ragusa, where on a clear day one can view the isle of Malta from the villa gardens. I adore the people of Sicily and the foods the best. Because my best friend was Sicilian I was treated as one of them. I only became disenchanted when I decided to live there on a more permanent basis and buy an Olive grove to press oil. That deal fell flat as in typical Sicilian fashion the owner who called me his son tried to screw me my charging double of what the property was worth and with a smile and Barretta in his well tailored suit pocket.I've said all that to say your story rings true to me and so far I'm finding it extremely well written, engaging and a page turner.This will be published no doubt soon.DT
A very interesting and riverting story. Know Walton on Thames very well as that is where I met my late wife. Your English is perfect, making me wonder because so is the writing. Anyhow, a very good story which I am backing.Take a look at mine, Three Stayed Home a WW2 adventure and love story in need of a little help. JohnJ
Hi Francesco. Sicilian Shadows is written in a beautiful style that helps the reader feel the scenes. You keep the reader interested and the dialogue is superb. I've only read the first chapter but will continue to read. I like how you bring so many different descriptions and feelings into this first chapter that seem almost personal. Best of lucknjoy *moods and expressions*
Francesco:I continue to be blown away by the talent displayed on this site; your book is one of them. This is a vivid, well-crafted tale of a child whose transformation surfaces at the hand of his father's cruelty to a cat. Little did the father know that such an experience would color his son's entire persona. What with his ridiculed and wailing that his son was basically an idiot child because he was exposed to reading and drawing, but not the rigors of daily Sicilian work, would no doubt help to shape this child's perception of himself. This is a fascinating account--a true life tale that I'm sure will open our eyes to the Sicilian culture. Backed with pleasure.Ida L. (Silent Storm)
Hi FrankI've just finished reading the last one of your submitted chapters and now fully understand why Sicilian Shadows is right up there at the top of the Authonomy charts. You write with such warmth and confidence. I love the way you fashion and contrast the two cultures into your work and that you bring mythology and history (and even pre-history) into it too; it all adds together to give the reader a thorough sense of Francesco's fight for acceptance and his darkening path of growth and change.Good writing is all about the making you feel something for the characters and you've done that here with tremendous skill - I have a picture in my head of each of the gang.I can see this making the big time and I will keep this on my shelf for the rest of the month.All the bestRobin
Just read your blurb and this sounds like a dangerous story. Will you get in trouble with the Mafia if this is published? I'm scared fo them; they are legendary like Dragons :) On a more serious note, this appears to be a very visual and realistic story that really will take people to another world (or just one, I am happily unaware of).
WOW! This is good stuff. I can see why you're number 2 on the desk.The characters just leap off the page.Good luck!
This is an excellently written book, very engaging, with a great mixture of humour, nostalgia and seriousness. I wish you the very best of luck!
Brutal and honest. Gritty and authentic. Great writing!Donna(The Many Adventures of Syd and Sparkle)