It is the winter of 1942, and the world is at war. A few Jewish musicians attempt to flee the Nazi death grip, each desperately trying to navigate his own path to safety. With the courageous aid and kindness of strangers, they soon find themselves in Rome, where under the highly secret help of the Vatican, they are hidden in Bellafortuna, a small village in Sicily. The residents of Bellafortuna welcome them and care for them, and for a fleeting moment, the horrors the musicians are facing are forgotten while residing in the beautiful, idyllic landscape of Sicily. But word soon reaches the small village that Italy has surrendered, now making Germany at war with Italy. War quickly comes to the village as the Germans storm into Sicily to repel the Allied advance. As Bellafortuna becomes front and center in the raging war, the villagers rise as one to try and protect and save the Jews hiding in their midst. Failure to keep them hidden will mean death to those under their protection…and perhaps even to the villagers themselves.
An intricately plotted and meticulously researched novel, Saving the Music demonstrates how, in the face of death and unspeakable horror, the strength of the human spirit of ordinary people can shine bright through the darkness.
Buy the Book:
AMAZON | BARNES AND NOBLE | INDIEBOUND
“In Saving the Music, author Chip LoCoco writes of the efforts undertaken by common villagers, priests, and even a Pope to protect Jews from the Nazis. He vividly depicts the horrors faced by the Jews as they confront the Holocaust. Filled with real heroism and high drama, this book brings perspective and depth to its subject. It’s an exciting read on an important topic, and I strongly recommend it.” -Ronald Rychlak, Author of Hitler, the War, and the Pope
“This is a well-composed novel that captures key moments of the Holocaust as it relates to the Italian people. I highly recommend it.” -Professor Vincent Lapomarda, S.J., Author of The Jesuits and the Third Reich
“This is a well-researched novel and reflects the situation as it then existed, hopefully, never to return.” -Fr. Peter Gumpel, S.J., postulator of the cause of beautification for Pius XII
“Chip LoCoco’s novel, Saving the Music, is a realistic fact-based story of pain, fear and true heroism. The premise is solidly grounded on documented facts of the actions of the Catholic Church under the Pontificate of Pope Pius XII down to priests and individual Catholics. Saving the Music is an exciting and engrossing read, which joins the list of wonderful truth-based books of late that is shedding light on the truth ending the worst character assassination of the 20th Century. Bravo.” -Gary L. Krupp, Author of Pope Pius XII and World War II- The Documented Truth
As the war rages on in 1942, a group of Jewish musicians are being rounded up onto trains by Nazis. Through the relentless work of resistance members and friends, they are hidden away and freed from the trains. At the same time Pope Pious XII is debating what to say publicly about the massive loss of life at the hands of the Nazis. Making the difficult decision to retain neutrality, Pope Pious XII quietly assists in the relocation of thousands of Jews, including a special group of musicians. With the assistance of Father Biaggio Sanguinetti, the group of fifteen Jews finds a new home and new identities in the small Italian town of Bellafortuna where they find how to create music together. When the German's occupy Bellafortuna, the residents use their ingenuity to keep everyone safe and when the Nazi's threaten the Roman Ghetto, the Pope's network and the Italian people come together to save as many people as they can.
Saving the Music is a beautiful story of hope and fear during World War II. Set in the fictional village of Bellafortuna, Sicily, the stories of several characters from A Song for Bellafortuna are continued, but it is not necessary to read beforehand. The theme of music is strong within the story and is what brings everyone together regardless of religion or language and keeps spirits high during the darkest of times. The characters are all wonderfully created and quickly became people that I cared about. The writing skillfully showcased the beauty of Bellafortuna and the resident's immense capacity to care for others. While Bellafortuna is fictional, the actions of the Italian people and Pope Pious XII were very real. Reading about the Pope's difficult decisions that were made to save lives, all while receiving criticism for not speaking out against Hitler's atrocities was profound showing that true heroes do not act in order to receive praise, but will gladly risk themselves in order to do what is right.
This book was received for free in return for an honest review.
Chip LoCoco was born and raised in New Orleans. His first novel, Tempesta’s Dream, became an Amazon Bestseller.
His second novel, Bellafortuna, has been nationally recognized, being named a Short List Finalist in the William Faulkner Writing Competition and awarded the B.R.A.G. Award in Historical Fiction. Mr. LoCoco is a member of the Italian American Writers Association.
His newest work, Saving the Music, which is Book 2 of his Bellafortuna Series, was just recently released.
Chip, who is an attorney, is married to his wife of over 20 years, Wendy. They have two children, Matthew and Ellie and a beagle, named Scout. They reside in their beloved city of New Orleans, where if you try to find them on a Sunday in the Fall, they will be somewhere rooting on their Saints.
WEBSITE | FACEBOOK | TWITTER | GOODREADS