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The Fact Based Story of a Remarkable Life of Courage and Tragedy
on August 27, 2017
Set in Italy during the last two years of the second World War, this story follows the life of a remarkable young man, Pino Lella, who finds himself assigned as the driver of one of the most powerful Nazi officials in Italy. He accompanies this General throughout northern Italy as the war deteriorates and comes to a violent and tragic end.
The scenes of brutality on all sides are shocking and depressing, not only on the part of the Nazis towards their captives and slaves, but also on the part of Italians who at the end of the war let their anger erupt against the dictator Mussolini and others. There are many scenes of heroism and bravery as well, and the story of Lella makes it all very personal throughout. His own tragedies are particularly painful and sad as the war ends.
This is an extraordinary life in all respects, not only his wartime accomplishments but his life afterwards which is recounted at the end of the novel. His encounters with various famous people throughout his life are fascinating.
A very worthwhile story that author Mark Sullivan was lucky enough to learn of, then putting several years of research into piecing together as many of the details as he could. He presents it as a biographical / historical novel but inasmuch as it is based upon the true story of Pino Lella I take it as fundamentally a true story. Remarkable to read, both sad and inspiring.
Photos attached (left to right):
1. Father Re and Barbareschi
2. Pino with author Mark Sullivan in 2006
3. Pino on Lake Orta, looking north, 2006
4. Pino at book signing in Stresa, Italy, June 15, 2017
5. Pino at age 17