Beneath a Scarlet Sky
Based on the true story of a forgotten hero, Beneath a Scarlet Sky is the triumphant, epic tale of one young man’s incredible courage and resilience during one of history’s darkest hours.
Pino Lella wants nothing to do with the war or the Nazis. He’s a normal Italian teenager—obsessed with music, food, and girls—but his days of innocence are numbered. When his family ho...more
Based on the experiences of Pino Lella, an unsung WWII hero, the events at the heart of this book are incredible and inspiring. Sullivan, though obviously well-meaning, presents them here in what is more or less a bloated, commercialized, color-by-number hagiography.
Somehow present at just about as many significant events during WWII as one can be, Pino deftly overcomes every obstacle in his path. While - again - incredible and inspiring, there's not much in the way of tension or susp ...more
The strength of Beneath a Scarlet Sky comes from it's exploration of the Italian experience under Mussolini during the Second World War. I know almost nothing about what happened here, despite having read A LOT of books and memoirs set during this time. I've read countless tales about the Germans, Polish, the British and the Americans, so it was extremely refreshing to ...more
A semi biographical story about an Italian teenager Pino Lella who is sent to a convent after Allied forces airstrike destroys his home in Milan. At the convent he helps the priest smuggle out Jews to Switzerland who have come there for help. He meets and falls in love with Anna, an older widow. Eventually he is called home and made to join ...more
The story is well told and engaging. The characters seem real. Too often, historical characters come across as wooden or two dimensional, as if th ...more
but what i enjoyed most about this story is how it educated me on the impact of WWII in italy. italy is rarely the focus for novels on the subject - even though the jewish community of italy was greatly affected, it is hardly ever talked about due to the massive destruction of documents and records, as well as the collective amnesia of italia ...more
GOOD STUFF: I learned that groups of Italians - loosely organized by priests and archbishops of the Catholic church - were active in smuggling Jewish refugees over the Alps and into Switzerland to keep them out of the Nazi reach. Getting a feel for the timeline of the German presence in Italy and how it was marked by milestones of Allied advancem ...more
I thought the writing was good and it flowed well but more editing would definitely have helped. There was too much detailed information about every single trip that Pino drove for the General. There also seemed to be a lot of "close calls" in situations that Pino found himself in. I would like to know if this is all true or based on memory?
This review i ...more
One reason they were, which I think is the most damning is that although it's purported to be the true life story of Pino Lella, a hero of WW 2, there is little supporting evidence for his story and some of the incidents the author reports seem unlikely to ...more
This is far and away one of the best books ever on Kindle First. It's a riveting story of love and righteousness. I won't give away more than that. If you want to know the perspective of an Italian during World War II, this is worth the read.
That one man can have endured so much, achieved so much and yet also be such an unknown boggles the mind. The book was part biography, part fiction because even with extensive research there were many unanswered questions about this horrendous time in Italy's history. I knew little about Italy's WWII story and found this story to be eye opening. The book took me a long time to read. It was one that I found myself having to put down and walk away from because ...more
The book synopsis sums up the first 35% of the novel really well. Therefore, I am not going to summarize the plot here. I didn't hate Beneath a Scarlet Sky, but I didn't really love this book either. I did love the cover, the title, and that this was a WWII era book situated in Italy. Most of the books I read are heavy on the France/Poland narrative and I appreciated the different angle. I will say that it was refreshing to have a male protagonist be shown in a very different li ...more
As the boys moved on, Mimo limped along while rubbing his right hip and complaining. But Pino was barely listening. A tawny-blond woman with slate-blue eyes was coming down the sidewalk right at them. He guessed her to be in her early twenties. She was beautifully put together, with a gentle nose, high cheekbones, and lips that curled naturally into an easy smile. Svelte and of medium height, she wore a yellow summer dre...more
Actually, though, either way it has the same problems, in that the writing is juvenile and the story made me laugh out loud numerous times with how absurd it is. I had to start taking notes just to keep track of the astonishing coincidences and cartoonish tale ...more
Although a work of fiction this novel is based on a true story with a real hero. At the heart of the story is a normal seventeen-year-old Italian boy named Pino Lella. He is obsessed with music, finding a girl, and falling in love. But then in 1943, the bombs start dropping on Milan and his family home is destroyed. His parents send him to a camp in th ...more
Rounding up to 4 STARS on this one!
What an impressive history of survival, grief and love!
Beneath a Scarlet Sky is based on the true story of Pino Lella who lived in Milan, Italy and was a spy for the Allies. Before he was a spy, he was working underground and helping Jews escape over the Alps. After doing this for a year or two, his parents forced him to enlist as a German soldier.
In order to strike back against his Italian parents, he decides to ...more
This was a brilliantly written, and brutally honest book of one man's life in WW2. He went from being a child to becoming a man, a spy, a friend, and a lover. This tale is so emotional and heart wrenching that you can't help but fall in love with every minute of this book. WOW, just WOW. I can't even imagine going and doing any of these things. This was so well written and the tale told so well and with such emotion, it left me speechless. I don't even know how to explain this book or ...more
5 stars for the bravery that Pino and others showed
This should have been a book I adored. It had all the elements of what I so enjoy in my books, heroes, World War 2, courage, nobility in the face of devastation and yet this novel left me feeling oddly displeased.
This is the story of a seventeen year old young man living in Italy during the war. He is sent away because his parents fear for his and his bother's safety. They are sent to a school in the Alps ...more
First things first, this audiobook is a commitment. It is 17 hours long! About 25% way through I upped the speed to 1.25x and it cut a few hours off, phew. I am terribly bad at paying attention to ...more
UPDATE *** As is my habit, I did not read the other GR reviews before writing my own ... Wow, was I surprised ... the diversity of opini ...more
|Getting to know Pino||115||807||30 minutes ago|
|Volusia County Pu...: Pino Lella is, in fact, a real person, and this novel is based on his life. If you were Pino what decision would you have made?||2||3||Jun 28, 2020 09:43AM|
|Volusia County Pu...: The end of the book looks at Pino's life after the war. He had many jobs and lived in many places after the war? Do you see this as restlessness?||1||1||Jun 25, 2020 11:25AM|
|Volusia County Pu...: When Pino's Father calls him back to Milan, what choice did his Uncle & Father have him make. How does he feel about what he is asked to do.||1||1||Jun 25, 2020 11:19AM|
|Volusia County Pu...: When Pino is sent to Casa Alpena, what does father Rey have him do?||2||3||Jun 25, 2020 11:17AM|
Sullivan spent th ...more