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One More Moon

4.32  ·  Rating details ·  102 ratings  ·  64 reviews
Goodbye Mussolini! One Woman's Story of Fate and Survival

Goodreads Choice Nominee Ralph Webster tells the true story of his grandmother’s desperate journey from her life at the Pensione Alexandra in Naples to America - after Mussolini and the Fascists join with Hitler - and as countries across the world close their doors to Jewish refugees fleeing the spread of Nazi evil.

Paperback, 412 pages
Published February 2018 by CreateSpace Independent Publishing Platform (first published December 6th 2017)
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Average rating 4.32  · 
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 ·  102 ratings  ·  64 reviews

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Marialyce (absltmom, yaya)
3.5 interesting stars

Elsa and Paul have, when they were in their fifties, decided to buy a pensione in Naples. The year was 1931 right before the war years would set in. Elsa and Paul were German Jews who eventually became Italian citizens. The story of life in Italy at the time of the rule of Mussolini is told in this book written by their grandson. He uses Elsa's words to tell of the times that people were going through with the rise of Hitler and the hatred that seemed to spread across Europe
Sherwood Smith
This is one of those books impossible to slap a marketing tag onto, as it's fiction . . . but not really.

Webster has chosen to tell his grandmother's story through first person, until the very end. The narrative drive (I am avoiding the word novel) not only has an authentic feel, as if he's heard the story many times, but there's authenticity in the way many elders (the grandmother is ninety eight when she is purportedly writing, or telling, this history) wander from point to point, often repeat
Bonnye Reed
Mar 29, 2018 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
GnAB Ralph Webster brings us a biography of his grandmother, a Jewess raised in Koenigsberg, East Prussia, Germany on the Baltic Sea. Elsa moved to Italy as a young lady in 1905, met and married her husband Paul, and raised her four children in Naples. In 1935, the industrial nations clamped hard in a global depression and war rumors whispered around the world, Paul's second generation business of obtaining and selling tartar from wine makers to make the leavening agent known as cream of tartar ...more
Jan 10, 2020 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: read-2020
Pretty interesting read, love that its nonfiction, haven't read many, if any books set in italy around world war 2, my grandfather was stationed there during the war so i found this story extreamly interesting and loved how much it focused not just Elsa and her family but Italy as a whole as well as germany. Don't know why i hadn't heard of it until a few days ago! ...more
Mar 19, 2018 rated it it was amazing
One More Moon is a lovely story told through the eyes of a 98-year woman, looking back on her experiences in Italy in the early stages of World War II. I learned a lot about the time period through Elsa's narrative, and also grew to care about the characters throughout the story. However, where the book most spoke to me was at the end. The author did a remarkable job of weaving together the stories in an unexpected fashion, and brought a lovely sense of closure at the end of the book. I also tho ...more
Imagine yourself sitting down with an elderly woman and listening as she tells you her life story. This is what Ralph Webster brings to readers as he recounts a beloved family member’s experience during WWII.

This is not your typical Holocaust story. There are no camp experiences--no violence of any kind. There are some nail-biting moments, however. Webster presents a view of the war that is a bit different.

Elsa and Paul are German Jews who had immigrated to Naples, Italy as young adults. They ma
Feb 18, 2018 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
While I enjoy memoirs, I wasn’t expecting very much from this book because of the cover; it didn’t look very interesting to me. Was I ever wrong!

I loved so much about this book, especially the conversational style that it was written in. Reading it was almost like sitting with an elderly woman who has had a lifetime of interesting adventures to share. Elsa talks about what it was like to be born into a well-to-do German family where servants take care of the chores. She does not come across as
Nicole Morton
Apr 08, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Wonderful story told from the narration of Elsa, a German-Jewish woman from Koenigsberg, East Prussia located near the Baltic Sea. Elsa and her husband Paul move to Naples, Italy. Their enthusiastic daughter, Mela convinces the family to open a pensione. The family operates the Pensione Alexandria while Mussolini is in power. Many notable guests visit the pensione. Among the guests are German-Jewish refugees(Ilse and Arthur) fleeing Nazi Germany's persecution and racial cleansing. Memorable gues ...more
Marilee Floener
Jul 09, 2018 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I'm not much of a history or biography fan in the books I select to read but decided to give One More Moon a try. I'm so glad I did. I found that I couldn't put it down and quickly devoured it. There are many twists and turns throughout this well-written book. It was definitely not the dry-history of school-days or a boasting-type biography. I was spellbound wondering what would happen next. The ending greatly surprised me and left me torn between tears and smiles. Even though I now know the end ...more
Bianca Smith
Feb 18, 2018 rated it it was amazing
This review was first published at Mass Consternation.

I received this book for free from Bookish First in exchange for an honest review. If you've read my other reviews, you'll know that if it's bad, I'll say so, regardless of how I received the book.

Ralph Webster’s grandparents fled from Mussolini-controlled Italy in 1941. They were German Jews, who’d spent most of their lives in Italy. They never spent time in concentration camps. They weren’t smuggled out under cover of darkness. However, One
Feb 05, 2019 rated it it was amazing
At the very beginning of this story, the reader is informed that this is not an autobiography. Nor is it exactly a biography. Rather, this is one side of an on-going conversation that takes place over an extended period of time. The story in "One More Moon" is Ralph's grandmother's story of her life. The life Elsa lived is...remarkable, extraordinary, and inspiring.

From the very beginning, the reader sees that Elsa possesses uncommon courage and willingness. She leaves her homeland of Germany to
In 1934, Elsa and her husband Paul have purchased the Pensione Alexandria that overlooks the Mediterranean Sea. They believe that they will live a peaceful life and be financially secure. They are German Jews. However, they are making a living with the pensione. Visitors from all over tell them the story about what is happening in Nazi Germany. Suddenly, the war changes everything. Elsa and her family are forced to sell their beloved pensione and flee to America. Their route to freedom seems ble ...more
Bambi Rathman
Mar 23, 2018 rated it really liked it
First I will thank Bookish for the opportunity to read this story. It's a memoire of a Jewish German woman, Elsa as she leaves Germany to go to Italy in the early Nazi uprising years. It's the story of what life was like for her and her husband, Paul, in Italy and making Italy their home. Then Hitler starts his domination and Elsa and Paul feel they need to flee the country and try to get to America where their children have gone before them. The story does get repetitive and somewhat dragging b ...more
Wanda Keith
Jun 28, 2018 rated it it was amazing
After reading 'A Smile In One Eye, A Tear In the Other', I was anxious to read Ralph Webster's next book, 'One More Moon'. Webster tells the amazing story of his grandmother, Elsa, who as a young lady moved to Naples, Italy in 1905. Elsa was a typical wife of the times and raised her children with her husband, Paul. When hard times hit, Elsa who was by this time 51 did the unexpected and invested in a pensione and her life and that of her family changed dramatically. Webster does a beautiful job ...more
Feb 07, 2018 rated it it was amazing
One More Moon is a continuation to Smile in One Eye; a Tear in the Other published by Ralph in 2016. In his new book, Ralph shows war from woman’s perspective. I think there have not been enough women’s testimonies of war. Therefore, One More Moon contributes enormously to collective memory and to women’s studies. The book tells about women’s situation in 1930s. Women had different roles and they were treated in different ways. They suffered from various limitations and had different expectation ...more
Jean Turbett
Feb 02, 2021 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Ralph Webster captivates his reading audience with his second book entitled, One More Moon. This nonfiction story takes place in Italy, on the heels of WWII, as middle aged Elsa and her husband, Paul, purchase the Pensione Alexander. Elsa and Paul, both German Jews, feel most welcomed in Naples. They love the guests the Pensione invites into their lives, and in time it becomes not only a thriving business for them, but a place where they can learn about the world beyond.
Once World War II rear
Dec 18, 2018 rated it really liked it
Thanks to Bookish first for this book!
Memoir about the author's grandmother's escape from Germany to America told to him when she was 98 years old!
Interesting story of survival and determination and one woman's will to live. She traveled from Germany to Italy and then when WWII became much worse for Jews, she traveled to America via Cuba. Knowing her children were already in America gave her more determination for her and her husband to get to America.
This is one of the few stories about the eff
Oct 30, 2018 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
What a beautiful book! This certainly is on the list of great books I have read this year. "One More Moon" is set during the time prior to and through World War II. It is a trip back in time to the incredible uncertainty, danger, and strife Jews faced trying to leave Europe as Hitler's power grows. It speaks of one family's journey and is told through the voice of Mamarella, a Jewish German woman who immigrated to Italy at 18 where she was married, raised her family and was eventually became the ...more
Dede Janzen
May 03, 2018 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This was a book written about the WWII Era. It was about a German Jew that had moved to Italy to live with her aunt and while there had met her husband and married. She remained in Italy and bought a Chateau that they ran for many years until the Germans under Hitler's control started moving into the country and persecuting Jews. This is her story of loss and triumph on how the successfully were able to free the county to safety into the United States via Cuba. If you like WWII history this is a ...more
Jul 13, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: first-reads
This book took me a while to read, I just got distracted before really getting into the story. But it’s a truly interesting and wonderful story of a German/Italian Jewish woman’s life and how she was changed and grew through out her life and in response to the atrocities of WWII. The story itself meanders a bit, but is full of interesting details and bits of daily life in Naples. I found myself very invested in Elsa and Paul’s lives and journey.

I received this book for free through Goodreads G
Feb 28, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Told from the viewpoint of Elsa, the author’s grandmother, this is an absolutely fascinating look at Italy during the time of Mussolini and Hitler. Elsa leaves Germany to marry Paul (kind of an old-fashioned, arranged marriage that actually seems charming) and together they buy and operate a bed and breakfast in a small town there outside of Naples. The Pensione Alexandria is the heart and soul of the story because it is there that so many different characters touch the lives of Elsa and Paul. I ...more
Mar 11, 2018 rated it it was amazing
This was a very good book and I was drawn in from the first paragraph. I read a lot of Historical Fiction, and it was exciting to read from the perspective someone who experienced it. One More Moon is told in 98 year old Elsa’s own words and wonderfully written by her grandson, Ralph Webster. It is a historical memoir of her life and her families days before and during the years of World War ll. When they move from Germany to Italy they are welcomed with wide open arms, but over the years, as th ...more
Jul 16, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: bookish
I received a copy of this book from the author via Bookish First. Thank you.

There is no better history than that told by our grandparents. Thank you for sharing your grandmother's story and the rich history that goes with it.
Carmen Werning
Jan 01, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
A good read. I wanted to know more details. But a great book.

A great read. A story of the lives in tumultuous times.
Great writing kept me reading on.
World war II and all the was going on with the people that were living then and affected by it.
Feb 22, 2018 marked it as not-finished
Shelves: ebooks, netgalley
This book started out okay, but it started rambling and I lost interest and just couldn't finish it. ...more
Mar 04, 2018 marked it as to-read
Thank you to the author, the publisher and Goodreads for a Kindle copy won in a giveaway!
Marsha Ramsay
Nov 02, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Wonderful and interesting
Jan 13, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Exceptional read. Beautiful characters and storytelling. Loved this one,
Colleen Watson
Nov 29, 2018 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I completely loved it. Felt as though I was living through it with Paul and Elsa.
Joann Hass
Sep 06, 2021 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Still in awe over this book, One of the best I have read.
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Award winning author Ralph Webster received worldwide acclaim for his first book, A Smile in One Eye: A Tear in the Other, which tells the story of his father’s flight from the Holocaust. Voted by readers as a Goodreads 2016 Choice Awards Nominee for Best Memoir/Autobiography, A Smile in One Eye: A Tear in the Other, his second book, One More Moon, and now his third, The Other Mrs. Samson, are pro ...more

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