FIRST THE LIGHTNING by Ruth Adams Knight

FIRST THE LIGHTNING

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KIRKUS REVIEW

Another story by Ruth Adams Knight with a European setting (see Top of the Mountain and Half Way to Heaven) makes an earnest but disappointing attempt to outline the problem of many Italians today. The characters seem real enough but the situation is pat and facile, esting weakly on the outside forces which provide the solutions for Giovanni and his young mother Maria. Almost completely devastated by the war in Florence, Giovanni and Maria had a bright spot in their lives. He was an American air force Captain, Joseph D. Oakes, who already loved Italy through his friends the, Strozzis, at home and came to love Maria and the boy during the occupation. But his plans to return for them fell through when a serious injury hospitalized him back in the states and in the threat of permanent disability, he cuts off their relationship. Soured by what they think is an abandonment, Glovanal and Maria grow more despondent. The plot is saved somewhat by having Giovanni come to some healthy realizations about other people on his own. There is a rather silver-lined ending when the captain recovers and can promise them a future together.

Pub Date: Oct. 20th, 1955
Publisher: Doubleday