Beneath a Scarlet Sky by Mark T. Sullivan. An unforgettable story that will resonate with me long after reading the last page. A WWII story of Pino Lella, a young man living in Milan Italy, in the midst of Nazi control. When his family home is destroyed by allied bombs, he is sent to live at a camp from his boyhood in the Italian Alps.

Pino starts out as an average Italian teenager motivated by music, food and love. He meets his first love Anna at the start of the war and hopes for a future with her.

He quickly matures into an unsung hero leading fleeing Jewish families across the Alps. He is enjoying his time resisting the Nazi’s and feels useful helping many families make safe passage to Switzerland.

However, as he is quickly approaching 18 years of age, his parents force him to enlist as a German soldier. In their attempt to protect him from being forced to the front lines, Pino is still injured. This fateful injury will keep him out of combat, but after Pino is injured, he is recruited to become the personal driver for Adolf Hitler’s left hand man in Italy, General Hans Leyers. Leyers is one of the Third Reich’s most shadowy and powerful commanders who provides Pino with another chance to help the resistance.

Pino makes a decision to become a spy for the Allies and reports what he witnesses while driving for Leyers. The story is full of action and as the war is coming to an end, Pino’s character has fully developed to manhood. His hope for a future with Anna is becoming more clear as an end to the war is near.

This is a fictionalized portrayal of Pino Lella’s real life story and it is a captivating depiction of historical events. Readers who enjoyed, All the Light We Cannot See, will relish Pino’s unique perspective of the effect of WWII in Italy. There are many stories about Northern Europe during the war, but this is one of the few historical fictions about Italy. Pino’s story is brought to life with such an engaging character. All of the character interpretations are so well done that you will wind through feelings of fear, confusion, love and hate. It is an absolute pleasure to read about real people with a strong faith enabling them to force fear aside to do the right thing. One of my favorite quotes from the book, “our job in life is to endure, to be kind, and to constantly put the past behind us and not dwell too much on the future. If you must look back, try to find the beauty and the benefit in every cruelty done to you. If you must think about the future, try to have no expectations about it. Trust in God to guide you through.”

Film producer, Amy Pascal and movie star, Tom Holland have acquired film rights to this book and after reading this story you will see why it was picked up. The scenes and characters are truly amazing, and the fact that his story really happened is incredible. Check out this book today. You will not regret it!

Socorro Public Library Book Club’s next book lineup has a book for everyone!

Something Shady at Sunshine Haven by Kris Bock.

Kris is a local author who has a fun detective series set in the southwest. In this first book, an old friend asks Kate to investigate suspicious deaths at a nursing home where her mom is residing. Kate was in an accident and had to move back home to recuperate. She decides to test her by finding out if a self-appointed, “angel of mercy” is at work to end the elderlies suffering, or if family members are seeking inheritance, or even potentially disgruntled staff looking to extort patients.

Stolen Focus: Why You Can’t Pay Attention- and How to Think Deeply Again by Johann Hari

This book explains the reasoning behind the lack of focus in the modern world. We are all living in a pathogenic culture; an environment in which sustained deep focus is difficult. Johann will explain why we cannot focus and what we can do about it.

Between Two Kingdoms: A Memoir of a Life Interrupted by Sulieka Jaouad

A few weeks before Suleika Jaouad turns 23, she is diagnosed with a rare form of acute myeloid leukemia. She recently graduated from Princeton and was looking into becoming a war correspondent. Instead, she is heading into a world of chemo treatments, a clinical trial, and surgeries.

The Locked Room by Elly Griffiths

A Ruth Galloway mystery that follows Ruth and Nelson on the trail of a murder when COVID-19 afflicts the world. Will Ruth be able to solve the mystery while being locked down in her cottage while she becomes increasingly lonely and frustrated?

SPL Book Club will be discussing Something Shady at Sunshine Haven by Kris Bock. The next book club meeting is Thursday, July 28, 2022, at 3 p.m. Join us! Free books and great discussions!

Library hours Monday – Thursday 9 a.m.-6 p.m. Friday 9 a.m-5 p.m. Saturday 9 a.m.-2 p.m.