LE FIGLIE DI GIULIA by Massimo Battaglio

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Turin 1848: Against the backdrop of patriotic motions, Massimo Battaglio draws the story of Lucia Maria, a name borrowed from a popular song, a country girl who escapes from the consequences of a wrong suffered in the king’s woods. In the city he finds shelter and comfort at the Marchesa of Barolo. Giulia Colbert, widow without offspring engaged in charitable works, administers Le Forzate, the modern women’s prison that Carlo Alberto entrusted to his care, and the Refuge, an institution for the recovery of former inmates run together with the sisters of Santa Maria Maddalena. The presence of Lucia Maria risks compromising everything, because at court there are those who seek an excuse to return to reactionary methods or would like public prisons, or simply are full of envy. With the help of friends Silvio Pellico, Cesare Balbo, Federigo Sclopis, Don Cafasso and Sister Gerbi, he seeks a solution; Cavour’s out of town. By chance Lucia Maria sees Pietrino, a playmate, and only now realizes that she is in love with her. He emigrated to Turin and became involved in the adventure of Don Bosco’s oratory. Victor Emmanuel is an indolent prince. The first war of independence looms over all of them… Massimo Battaglio in The Daughters of Giulia offers us a fascinating insight into the nineteenth-century Savoy society that is entering modernity, although opposed by reactionary impulses, where we are thinking about the introduction of the Albertine Statute, with one eye particularly on the women’s issue of the time. Each chapter is introduced by an illustration by the author that takes us back to the historical places where the story is set.

Massimo Battaglio

Massimo Battaglio was born in Turin in 1965. Graduated in architecture in 1992, he lives and works in Mirafiori, alternating the strictly professional activity, with painting, writing and passion for cooking. The author of numerous monographs on historic buildings in Piedmont, with WLM he published, in 2011, the book Amori Urbani, a bit collected, a bit of a tourist guide, where every love story is accompanied by illustrations of the author and historical notes. In 2015 he published for WLM, with great success, Stories of the putagè, a work of traditional Piedmont cuisine in 3 volumes, the result of a thorough historical research and complete with vintage images. With the historical novel Le figlie di Giulia (The Daughters of Giulia) (WLM 2016), she returns to fiction.

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