A Thread of Grace

  • by Mary Doria Russell
  • Narrated by Cassandra Campbell
  • 19 hrs and 53 mins
  • Unabridged Audiobook

Publisher's Summary

It is September 8, 1943, and Claudette Blum is learning Italian with a suitcase in her hand. She and her father are among the thousands of Jewish refugees scrambling over the Alps toward Italy, where they hope to be safe at last, now that the Italians have broken with Germany and made a separate peace with the Allies. The Blums will soon discover that Italy is anything but peaceful, as it becomes, overnight, an open battleground pitting against one another the Nazis, the Allies, resistance fighters, Jews in hiding, and ordinary Italians trying to survive.Set against this dramatic background, Russell traces the lives of a handful of fascinating characters, a charismatic Italian resistance leader, a Catholic priest, an Italian rabbi's family, and a disillusioned German doctor, telling the little-known but true story of the Italian citizens who saved the lives of 43,000 Jews during the war.


What the Critics Say

"An expansive, well-researched, and compelling novel." (Booklist)
"The action moves swiftly, with impressive authority, jostling dialogue, vibrant personalities and meticulous, unexpected historical detail. The intensity and intimacy of Russell's storytelling, her sharp character writing and fierce sense of humor bring fresh immediacy to this riveting WWII saga." (Publishers Weekly)


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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful

I had no idea......

Having grown up in the years immediately following WWII, I thought that I had heard all of the "war stories". Having married a first generation Italian, I thought that I knew alot about the Italian involvement in WWII. This book did something that few books can do for me: it told me a story that I had never heard of before. Such grace under fire, such fine humanity, such noble characters. This is a magnificent book and something that I wish I had read MUCH earlier!
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- Deborah

I loved the story and the narrator

The book is amazing and deserves accolades for itself, but what I'm really enjoying about the audiobook is the reader, Cassandra Campbell. Her voice is clear and warm. With her accents, the difference between the pronunciation of Germanic German and Austrian German is quite clear in her voice. Both of these are, of course, completely distinguishable from her French and Italian. The accents help define the characters with the one's light high Italian and another's harsh Black Forest German. Also I find, that I can easily distinguish between male and female characters without a lot of false barritone from Campbell. I'm going to look for other works read by her.
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- Michelle

Book Details

  • Release Date: 02-17-2005
  • Publisher: Books on Tape