T h e I t a l i a n A m e r i c a n s by M a r i a L a u r i n o
This wonderful book is a detailed look at our Italian American ancestors, a comprehensive “history” with one important caveat: The Italian Americans by Maria Laurino is never ever “dry.” In fact, it is as colorful, elegant, and yes, even delicious, as our people and Italy itself.
For those who watched the 4-hour PBS documentary of the same name, you can expect this companion book to provide a richer, more nuanced portrait of so many struggles and triumphs. There is plenty of dark side, but far more brightness and optimism, qualities that occur naturally, and abundantly, in every Italian I know. With its plethora of color and black & white photos, The Italian Americans may look like a coffee table book, but it reads like one of the best adventure stories.
I am so grateful to Maria Laurino for illuminating our struggle to gain acceptance, and to finally, in this new century, witness and appreciate our lasting contribution to an America that continues to evolve with the histories of its newcomers.