MLA Platinum Award Press Release

Beyond the Book: Background information when reading A Thread of Grace

Summary |  Excerpt |  Reading Guide |  Reviews |  Readalikes |  Genres & Themes |  Author Bio

A Thread of Grace

A Novel

by Mary Doria Russell

A Thread of Grace by Mary Doria Russell X
A Thread of Grace by Mary Doria Russell
  • Critics' Opinion:

    Readers' Opinion:

  • First Published:
    Feb 2005, 448 pages
    Paperback:
    Nov 2005, 464 pages

    Genres

  • Rate this book


Book Reviewed by:
BookBrowse Review Team
Buy This Book

About this Book

Beyond the Book

This article relates to A Thread of Grace

Print Review

Mary Russell Doria says, 'the highest Jewish survival rate in Nazi-occupied Europe was in Italy! We've spent 60 years trying to understand what went wrong during the Holocaust. I wanted to know what went right in Italy.'

For skeptics who believe that she might have idealized the courage and generosity of ordinary Italians during the 1940s, Russell closes her author's note with the following inscription chiseled on the marble memorial stela in Borgo San Dalmazzo by the Jews of  Saint-Martin-Vesubie in honor of the people of Valle Stura and Valle Gesso:

When racial hatred raged in Europe, Jewish Refugees, uncertain of their fate, coming from distant countries -- Austria, Belgium, Germany, Poland -- found hospitality and safety in these valleys. Hidden in isolated cottages, protected by the population, they waited with trust and hope, through two interminable winters, for the return of liberty.  In homage to and in memory of those who helped them, those refugees and their descendants embrace the noble inhabitants of these valleys in brotherhood.

Interesting fact: To mirror the arbitrary nature of survival during wartime, Russell says that she flipped a coin to determine who among her characters would live and who would die.

Useful Links: A map of Italy (A Thread of Grace is set in the mountainous Northwest corner of Italy, approximately equidistant between Monaco and Genoa).

Filed under

This "beyond the book article" relates to A Thread of Grace. It originally ran in February 2005 and has been updated for the November 2005 paperback edition. Go to magazine.

This review is available to non-members for a limited time. For full access become a member today.
Membership Advantages
  • Reviews
  • "Beyond the Book" articles
  • Free books to read and review (US only)
  • Find books by time period, setting & theme
  • Read-alike suggestions by book and author
  • Book club discussions
  • and much more!
  • Just $12 for 3 months or $39 for a year
  • More about membership!

Support BookBrowse

Become a Member and discover books that entertain, engage & enlighten.

Join Now!

Editor's Choice

  • Book Jacket
    Cantoras
    by Carolina De Robertis
    Cantoras by Carolina De Robertis follows five characters who share a house, troubles, joys and parts...
  • Book Jacket: Daughters Of Smoke & Fire
    Daughters Of Smoke & Fire
    by Ava Homa
    Ava Homa's debut novel begins with an epigraph by Sherko Bekas, a Kurdish poet, the last lines of ...
  • Book Jacket: The Book of V.
    The Book of V.
    by Anna Solomon
    In ancient Persia, Esther, a young Jewish woman, parades herself in front of the king in a desperate...
  • Book Jacket: How to Be an Antiracist
    How to Be an Antiracist
    by Ibram X. Kendi
    Ibram X. Kendi opens How to Be an Antiracist with a personal story he finds shameful in retrospect, ...

Readers Recommend

  • Book Jacket

    The Last Train to Key West
    by Chanel Cleeton

    Romance and danger are locked into Cleeton's suitcase for this journey to 1935 Key West.
    Reader Reviews

  • Book Jacket

    The Stone Girl
    by Dirk Wittenborn

    A riveting tale of deception, vengeance, and power set against the haunting beauty of the Adirondacks.
    Reader Reviews

Book Club Discussion
Book Jacket
The Beekeeper of Aleppo
by Christy Lefteri

This moving, intimate, and beautifully written novel puts human faces on the Syrian war.

About the book
Join the discussion!
Win this book!
Win Of Bears and Ballots

An Alaskan Adventure in Small-Town Politics

A charming account of holding local office with an entertaining, quirky cast of characters.

Enter

Wordplay

Solve this clue:

A S Louder T W

and be entered to win..

Books that     
entertain,
     engage

 & enlighten

Visitors can view some of BookBrowse for free. Full access is for members only.

Join Today!

Your guide toexceptional          books

BookBrowse seeks out and recommends the best in contemporary fiction and nonfiction—books that not only engage and entertain but also deepen our understanding of ourselves and the world around us.