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Thursday, Feb. 28, 2013

Italian Family Reunion

Christopher Castellani’s ‘All This Talk of Love’

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A trip back to one’s ancestral homeland should be a grand adventure, but that’s not at all how Maddalena Piccinelli sees it in Christopher Castellani’s new novel All This Talk of Love. It’s been 50 years since Maddalena and her husband set foot in their native Italy so when Prima, Maddalena’s first-born daughter, surprises the entire family with a romantic plot to travel there, the protagonist is thrust back in time to relive her past and the painful memories she left behind.

Despite Maddalena’s hesitations, Prima has been indoctrinated in the mythos of the Old Country and wishes to take the entire family back to Italy with hopes of reuniting Maddalena and her husband with their family and the homeland they left behind. Moreover, unpleasant surprises make the trip home a necessity.

This emotional tale is both funny and tragic as it follows the multi-generational Piccinelli family members facing a contentious reunion. Told in numerous viewpoints, this engaging story is filled with hope, love, loss and memory.

Christopher Castellani is the author of two other novels: A Kiss from Maddalena, which was awarded the Massachusetts Book Award, and The Saint of Lost Things, a BookSense (IndieBound) Notable Book. Castellani is currently the artistic director of Grub Street, a leading independent creative writing center in Boston, as well as a faculty member at Warren Wilson College. Castellani will appear at Books & Company in Oconomowoc at 7 p.m. on Thursday, Feb. 28.