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3.79  ·  Rating details ·  229 ratings  ·  69 reviews
The gripping story of Gracianna--a French-Basque girl forced to make impossible decisions after being recruited into the French Resistance in Nazi-occupied Paris.

Gracianna is inspired by true events in the life of Trini Amador's great-grandmother, Gracianna Lasaga. As an adult, Amador was haunted by the vivid memory of finding a loaded German Luger tucked away in a nightst
Hardcover, 296 pages
Published July 23rd 2013 by Greenleaf Book Group Press (first published July 21st 2013)
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3.79  · 
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 ·  229 ratings  ·  69 reviews

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Jun 02, 2013 rated it really liked it
Find this and other reviews at: http://flashlightcommentary.blogspot....

Inspired by his childhood discovery of a German luger in his grandmother's nightstand, author Trini Amador painstakingly pieced together the facts of her life in an attempt to understand how such an artifact had found its way into her possession and in so doing created the foundation of what would become his debut novel, Gracianna.

Speaking as someone whose own grandmother took war time secrets to the grave, I couldn't help b
May 21, 2013 rated it it was amazing
This story is fiction, but based on true events of the author's great-grandmother, Gracianna Lasaga.

Gracianna Arrayet was born in the Pyrennes, mountains that border France and Spain. Her mother was Ann, who died in childbirth when Gracianna was eight years old - her grandmother, Grand-mere - Anastasia. Her birth certificate read "Father Unknown". Gracianna has a little sister, Constance, and they share a bond of love born from the loss of their mother. She loved her native Basque, the language
Michelle Miller (True Book Addict)
I'm having a bit of trouble writing this review. Gracianna is such a powerful and impactful novel, I want to be sure to get it right. I guess I'll start at the beginning with who it all starts...Gracianna herself. What a memorable character! And to know that her character was 'inspired' by the author's grandmother, to know that this person was real, it's just amazing. I have never read a book with a character quite like Gracianna. Strong willed and determined, yet perceptive and loyal, this is a ...more
The Just-About-Cocky Ms M
Oct 14, 2018 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: The undiscerning fans of WWII
Recommended to The Just-About-Cocky Ms M by: Suckered by five-star reviews
I’ve read many a review that began “I really wanted to like this book, but….” The last few books I’ve read have been set during World War II, a favorite period for me, and I thought this one, based on the blurb and some very favorable reviews, would fit right in.

Unfortunately, this dramatic, edge-of-your-seat, more or less true story was delivered with all the emotional depth and atmospheric setting as an op-ed piece in the Wall Street Journal. The story would have been far better served had it
Charles Weinblatt
Apr 11, 2013 rated it it was amazing
Gracianna by Trini Amador
Greenleaf Press
July 23, 2013
ISBN 13: 978-1608325702
ISBN 10: 1608325709
296 pages
Genre: Fiction
Publicist – Vicky Lynch

Reviewed by Charles S. Weinblatt

“. . . a compelling and inspiring novel . . .”

Gracianna is the imagined story of Gracianna Lasaga, author Amador’s great-grandmother, as she sets out from her French-Basque home for Paris on her way to start a new life in America near the beginning of World War II.

When Nazi troops invade Paris, attracti
Elizabeth of Silver's Reviews
Gracianna is a beautiful person and a beautiful story. I guess we can't really call it a story, though, because it is the life of a determined, strong, hardworking, and well-loved woman. The tribute her grandson gave to her in this book is wonderful.

Gracianna is an impressive woman and a woman who wanted to make something of herself and be proud of it for herself and her family. Halfway was not good enough or Gracianna. She had to do everything over and above. I felt her knowingly doing everythi
Anders Hemphill
Jul 18, 2013 rated it it was amazing
Great storytelling by Trini Amador! Gracianna is an inspiring American tale of a girl's long journey to a better life. She makes us want to reach further and be grateful for the blessings we have received!
Erin Al-Mehairi
Jul 27, 2013 rated it it was amazing
Gracianna is the true story of author Trini Amador’s great-grandmother, named Gracianna, a woman of the WWII-era who was adventurous, courageous, and had, in what I sensed, a beautiful spirit. As well, this was the story of his great-grandfather Juan and her sister, Constance. I certainly feel after reading this book that Gracianna spoke through the pages of this novel in a way that I imagine she must have mostly walked through life, gracing people with her presence–a hard-working, forward-think ...more
Joanne Williams
Jul 27, 2019 rated it it was amazing
A page turning true story of one lowly girl from Basque who moved to Paris in hopes of reaching America. The story is told by her great grandson based on the family account. He first became intrigued by his great grandmother when he found a German Luger in her home. I could not put this book down. It’s a story of true heroism & devotion.
Jul 03, 2013 rated it really liked it
Ever since Trini Amador, at the age of four, found a loaded German Luger in his great-grandmother’s nightstand in the countryside of Santa Barbara County, CA, he’s spent his life piecing together the fragments of his family’s history to determine why his Basque sheepherding grandparents had it. The account he renders in his debut novel is riveting, tragic, hopeful and (most incredibly) true.
Amador’s great-grandmother, Gracianna Lasaga, grew up in the Pyrenees Mountains of Northern Spain along
Jul 01, 2013 rated it really liked it
Recommends it for: Readers who like interesting, believable characters with a fictional based background.
Recommended to Eileen by: NetGalley
Gracianna by Trini Amador
An intriguing and well told fictional novel based on the life of the author’s Grandmother, Gracianna. Trini Amador was inspired to write this novel on recalling a childhood memory from when he was 4 years old. He found a loaded German luger in his Grandma’s house in South California. Years later, he was able to delve into his family history to find out why his Grandmother would have a loaded German gun and used the information to write Gracianna; combining fact with fic
Jul 19, 2013 rated it it was amazing
Source: Free book from Historical Fiction Virtual Book Tours, Lynch Public Relations,
Greenleaf Book Group Press, for the purpose of review.

The Basque people is an ethnic group that lives on the "western end of the Pyrenees" and north central Spain and the southwestern part of France. The Basque people are a hardworking proud people.
Gracianna and her sister Constance live with their Grand-mere Anastasia. Anastasia is both respected and feared by the Basque people in the village. When Gra
BookKitten Club
Jul 01, 2013 rated it it was amazing
The story begins by describing childhood moments of Gracianna and her sister Constance in their homeland, the Basque Pyrenees . They were raised only by a mother without a father until the mother died in childbirth when Gracianna was eight and Constance six years old. After the mother passed away the two girls were taken care of by their grandmother who taught them how to be a "perfect" women in every way.
Gracianna grew into a smart woman who was a persistent perfectionist and determined. She h
Jan 21, 2014 rated it liked it
Shelves: historical
This is a fictionalized account of the early life of the author's grandmother, a Basque woman born on the French-Spanish border before WWII. One of his first memories as a child is finding a German Luger in her California home. The story of how she got there is no doubt a fascinating one, although how much of this book actually happened is not clear. But the fact she & her husband even survived to emigrate is amazing.
We first meet Gracianna "Gras" Arrayet as a child, growing up in a house of
A copy of this book was provided to me as part of the blog tour; in exchange for an honest review.

Gracianna was a beautifully written historical fiction novel set in Nazi-occupied Paris. It's based on actual events; the author writes an account of his great grandmothers life, blending fact with fiction to make a thrilling story.

The story centers around the life of Gracianna. She is a completely unique Basque girl who grew up in a village under the care of her strict grandmother. Gracianna lear
Julia Smith
Jun 23, 2013 rated it liked it
Slow to start, but worth the effort. I won on Goodreads and I'm glad I did.
Gracianna by Trini Amador. Trini Amador is co-founder of Gracianna Winery in the Russian River Valley of Sonoma County, CA. The winery and wine was named to honor his Grandmother, Gracianna Lasaga, the Gracianna of the title.

When the author was 4 years old he found a loaded German luger in his Grandma’s house in South California. Years later, he was able to delve into his family history to find out why his Grandmother wou
Meg - A Bookish Affair
"Gracianna" is the story of author Trini Amador's grandmother and her life and the choices she had to make during World War II. I absolutely love family stories. Some of the best stories can come from our pasts. I was fascinated by the idea that Amador found a story in his family's past to tell.

World War II is still one of my very favorite time periods to read about. There are so many stories there from so many different people and so many different points of view. In this book, Gracianna, the t
This story begins in the Pyrenees, at the border of France and Spain, Gracianna has a dream to go to America one day. Moving to Paris she is able to get a job and starts saving. She is following shortly by her childhood friend and love interest, Juan and then her sister, Constance. It is at this point the Nazi's enter Paris and life won't be the same again. Without giving too much of the story away, the author has woven a wonderful story that had me captivated right from the very beginning, this ...more
Jun 19, 2013 rated it really liked it
Shelves: arc
I received this ARC from Net Galley in return for an honest opinion.

This was a beautiful book set during the Holocaust. This is the story of Gracianna and her family, Gracianna and of those around her. Gracianna grows up in the Pyrennes and dreams of moving to Paris. Her family tries to dissuade her as the war is there. She decides to risk it and moves there in the early 1940’s. She gets involved in the French Resistance within some time there.

The story continues with Juan, a local boy from her
May 28, 2013 rated it liked it
The author has proudly written the story of the exploits of his Basque grandmother, Gracianna, during the Nazi occupation of Paris. He has fleshed out the murmurings and insinuations of older family members as they intimated the involvement of Gracianna in the French underground. Though the relationship of Gracianna and Juan made one wonder at Juan's patience, his love was evident and his patience was later rewarded as was evident in the family they had. Gracianna risked her life numerous times ...more
Theresa Daughton
Jun 14, 2013 rated it it was amazing
OMG! I've been chomping at the bit to read this book ever since Trini's wife shared that it was being published. I was not disappointed. I thank them both for letting me read it early. I could not put this book down. It is amazing and awful that she went through all of this. I was thankful to know she had a great-grandson so I knew as I was reading she would survive each situation. I highly recommend this book and suggest you enjoy a tasty bottle of her namesake wine as you read - the best in th ...more
Robert L.
Jul 31, 2013 rated it it was amazing
This was a wonderful book. Trini Amador is a skillfull story teller. The read is quick, historical, educational and entertaining. It is, at its core, a love story. It weaves WWII, the German occupation of France, the Basque and French underground resistance and the hearts and lives of Trini's great grand parents. Read and enjoy.
Kim Ayre
Apr 21, 2014 rated it really liked it
A captivating story based on a true story that leaves you wondering how much is true, but in a good way. I really enjoyed this quick read!
Sherry Wright
Jul 30, 2013 rated it it was amazing
Wonderful story! Takes you into the life of the character and keeps you till the very last page! will re read again!
Barbara Chase
This story is about a Basque woman from a sheep herding community who moves to Paris in order to work and earn passage to America. After she arrives, the war begins and as the Nazis occupy Paris, she becomes part of the Resistance, luring high ranking officers into a private room and killing them.
I enjoyed this woman's view of the war, and the absolute power the Nazis exercised and the risks taken by the Resistance. However, I found the writing to be flat, simplistic, and 2 dimensional. The main
Mary Kate
Jul 12, 2017 rated it liked it
This is a self-published book and it shows. The writing in the beginning was so disjointed and bad, I couldn't see how anyone could finish it. Although it never reads like a novel, and the writing was weak throughout, the story of Gracianna assassinating the Nazis was compelling enough to finish the book. It would be interesting to know how much of this was true. It's sad a real novelist wasn't working with this material. It could have been fantastic.
Molar  Roller
Aug 13, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This story is an absolute page turner! The author shows incredible care and thought in developing the characters. His sensitivity his clearly unusual. Truly one of the best books I have read this year.
Nora Vickery
Jun 10, 2018 rated it really liked it
A little slow to start, but worth it in the end. A beautiful story.
Barbara Plowden
Jun 19, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Love the feisty characters!! What perseverance they had during the war. Loved learning about Basque culture!
May 09, 2013 rated it liked it
Shelves: historical, war, epubs
By Trini Amador

Summery courtesy of

The gripping story of Gracianna--a French-Basque girl forced to make impossible decisions after being recruited into the French Resistance in Nazi-occupied Paris.

Gracianna is inspired by true events in the life of Trini Amador's great-grandmother, Gracianna Lasaga. As an adult, Amador was haunted by the vivid memory of finding a loaded German Luger tucked away in a nightstand while wandering his great-grandmother's home in Southern Califor
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Trini Amador vividly remembers the day he found a loaded German Luger tucked away in a nightstand while wandering through his great-grandmother’s home in Southern California. He was only four years old at the time, but the memory remained and he knew he had to explore the story behind the gun. This experience sparked a journey towards Gracianna, Amador’s debut novel, inspired by true events and we ...more
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