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In Chicago, in the summer of 1957, Italian immigrants Angela Rosa and Agostino Peccatori are caught between worlds, as they cling to old-country ways in an era of upending change. Angela Rosa must cope with the building tension—exacerbated by Agostino's wandering eye—of raising five U.S.-born children who are struggling to define themselves within a family rooted in old-world tradition. But the events of a single tragic evening are about to bring all of their lives to a sudden, irreversible standstill—as a once resilient family begins to unravel under a crushing burden of guilt. A poignant testament to the power of sacrifice, loyalty, and unconditional love, When the World Was Young is a stunning tale of one family's will to survive.
Tony Romano is the author of When the World Was Young and a two-time winner of a PEN Syndicated Fiction Project Award. His work has been produced on National Public Radio's Sound of Writing series and syndicated to newspapers nationwide.
“Romano’s first novel is a vivid and eloquent map…a most accomplished first novel, rich in characterization, setting, and psychological acuity”
“Tony Romano can indeed write … When the World Was Young … is a multilayered, often dark and edgy saga.”
The complexities and mysteries of familial bonds are brought into sharp, agonizing focus
“A low-key, compelling look at family love and betrayal set against an old-style immigrant drama”