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My Mother Is a River

My Mother Is a River

Author(s): Donatella Di Pietrantonio

Location(s): Abruzzo

Genre(s): Fiction

Era(s): From 1940 to present day



The sensitive and powerful story of the love between a mother and her daughter, a love “gone wrong from the start”. When Esperia exhibits the symptoms of a disease that robs her of her memory and the very sense of her existence, it is time for the daughter to take care of her and help her to rebuild her disintegrating identity. So the daily recounting of the past begins. Day after day we learn about the characters of the extended family, the inhabitants of the small village still without running water or electricity, in a “bright and harsh” Abruzzo, which emerges from the pages like a mythological distant land. They are bittersweet memories, full of life and truth, that rebuild the story of a relationship and of an Italy that appears so very distant and yet it is still present in our characters’ history. And, in the telling, the mother and daughter relationship slowly changes, fluctuating between love and hate, nostalgia and denial.

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Book Reviews

Lead Review

A strikingly good and evocative story. The setting is beautifully rendered, the villages, the mountains, it’s all there and powerful to imagine.

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