Early One Morning: Book summary and reviews of Early One Morning by Virginia Baily

Early One Morning

by Virginia Baily

Early One Morning by Virginia Baily
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  • Published in USA  Sep 2015
    400 pages
    Genre: Historical Fiction

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Book Summary

Two women's decision to save a child during WWII will have powerful reverberations over the years.

Chiara Ravello is about to flee occupied Rome when she locks eyes with a woman being herded on to a truck with her family.

Claiming the woman's son, Daniele, as her own nephew, Chiara demands his return; only as the trucks depart does she realize what she has done. She is twenty-seven, with a sister who needs her constant care, a hazardous journey ahead, and now a child in her charge.

Several decades later, Chiara lives alone in Rome, a self-contained woman working as a translator. Always in the background is the shadow of Daniele, whose absence and the havoc he wrought on Chiara's world haunt her. Then she receives a phone call from a teenager claiming to be his daughter, and Chiara knows it is time to face up to the past.

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Reviews

Media Reviews

"Baily's novel hums with emotional resonance." - Publishers Weekly

"At a moment when families around the globe are being upturned by organized aggression and civil war, Baily offers a poignant, not-too-sappy fable about surviving war's cruelties and crushing losses and the near-miraculous feats of bonding humans are sometimes capable of." - Kirkus

"Not only does Baily capture the bursting color and sumptuous food of Rome but she also details the swinging scene of 1970s Wales. Most impressive is the way she strips her story of all sentimentality; Chiara's rocky relationship with the difficult Daniele is rendered with heartbreaking clarity." - Booklist

"As gripping as any thriller... [and] crammed with the sort of heart-stopping, heart-breaking scenes that brought a lump to the throat of even this jaded reviewer. Really, really good." - The Daily Mail (UK)

"A real treat; a beautifully written account of the long consequences of war, set in a richly evoked Rome of the 1970s." - The Guardian (UK)

"Baily subtly tugs at your heartstrings and by the end of her novel you're likely to be as desperate as the women in Daniele's life to discover his fate." - The Daily Express (UK)

"A powerful tale of the reverberations of one woman's decision to save a child." - Stylist (UK)

"A compelling tale about people seeking to define themselves against the tumult of history." - Metro (UK)

"A fresh approach to this well-worn period." - The Independent (UK)

"A moving assertion of the power of maternal love to overcome unimaginable obstacles." - The Sunday Times (UK)

"A powerful and moving novel about a young man parted from his family during the Second World War - and the long shadow the separation casts." - Good Housekeeping (UK)

"...Virginia Baily offers an affecting contemplation of the past, personal identity, and the complexity and diversity of human bonds. Early One Morning is the sort of book you can't put down and then stays with you, like the best of journeys, long after it's finished." - Anne Korkeakivi, author of An Unexpected Guest

"Beautifully written and emotionally taut, Virginia Baily's Early One Morning is a powerhouse of a debut." - Jason Hewitt, author of The Dynamite Room

"Early One Morning isn't just an incandescent novel, but the rarest of reading experiences, offering a view both wrenching and luminous of how love pushes us past what we're capable of, and somehow - impossibly - reclaims us when we're long past saving. Utterly magnificent." - Paula McLain, author of The Paris Wife

"Wonderful... I was completely inside it from the first pages, just that delicious (rare) feeling of knowing you're in safe hands, this writer isn't going to make a mess of anything, or forfeit your trust or your belief. It managed to be so witty and dry and true... Vividly intelligent, gripping and moving and alive." - Tessa Hadley, author of Clever Girl

The information about Early One Morning shown above was first featured in "The BookBrowse Review" - BookBrowse's online-magazine that keeps our members abreast of notable and high-profile books publishing in the coming weeks. In most cases, the reviews are necessarily limited to those that were available to us ahead of publication. If you are the publisher or author of this book and feel that the reviews shown do not properly reflect the range of media opinion now available, please send us a message with the mainstream media reviews that you would like to see added.

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More Information

More Information

Virginia Baily holds a PhD and MA in English from the University of Exeter. She founded and co-edits Riptide, a short-story journal. She is also the editor of the political series of the Africa Research Bulletin. She lives in Exeter, Devon.

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