Comments on the Work
"...Helen Barolini, the dean of Italian American writers, whose UMBERTINA, a novel, CHIAROSCURO, a book of essays, and MORE ITALIAN HOURS, a recent collection of stories, form a triptych of Italian American culture evolving through the 20th century."
Fred Misurella, CHRISTIAN SCIENCE MONITOR, April 15, 2002
"...Barolini emerges as a serious literary artist..."
THE WOMEN'S REVIEW OF BOOKS, November 1997
Author's Prologue followed by profiles of Margaret Fuller, Emily Dickinson, Constance Fenimore Wooolson, Mabel Dodge Luhan, Marguerite Caetani, and
This collection of memoir essays recounts not only the author's journey from her American birthplace to the Italy of her ancestors, but also the discovery of self and the closing of a circle.
with drawing of Giardino Barberini in Rome by American artist George Biddle
"...an elegant, intelligent, and, finally, luminous book..." Carole Maso
"These stories captured my attention from beginning to end. Barolini's telling details create the characters so vividly that they seemed like people I have known, but now I have been given more insight into them." Nahid Rachlin
"... 15 elegant stories about Italians and Italian Americans balancing on the delicate wire connecting their two worlds." Fred Misurella
"...Barolini's powerful Introduction...is an impassioned and magnificent contribution to our knowledge of what it has meant and means still to be Ethnic American and Woman...It is a book of heroic recovery and affirmation."
"...a superb job of evoking both transcultural and transgenerational conflicts..." Alden Whitman
"...large in scope, in depth, and in the gift of rapid narrative movement." Cynthia Ozick
"As part memoir, part social commentary, and part literary criticism, Helen Barolini's wonderful Chiaroscuro seems to me...profoundly original..." Sandra Gilbert
"In this marvelous , learned and friendly volume, Helen Barolini...conveys the magic of an age in which the book as we know it was invented..." A Common Reader
"Reading FESTA is like taking a good humanities course. Barolini weaves information about Italian life with the art of cookery...showing the connectedness of all life." Maine Sunday Telegram
"a warm story, a very readable book." Christian Science Monitor
Cassette tapes of an interview and reading from Umbertina and excerpts from The Dream Book are available from the American Audio Prose Library Inc., order toll free (800) 447-2275.