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The Girl on the Via Flaminia [Paperback]

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Item description for The Girl on the Via Flaminia by Alfred Hayes...

"An author of authentic distinction."-The New York Times

Robert is an American soldier in occupied Rome during the final months of World War II. Lisa is a young woman obliged to work in Mamma Adele's on the Via Flaminia.

The passion they feel for one another is fueled by their separate and equally desperate needs. But can love between victor and vanquished ever blossom? This classic story of a poignant love affair informed by the aftermath of war is as relevant and moving today as when it was first published.

Alfred Hayes' screenplay for Paisan, directed by Roberto Rossellini, was nominated for an Academy Award.

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Item Specifications...

Pages   147
Est. Packaging Dimensions:   Length: 8.1" Width: 5.1" Height: 0.6"
Weight:   0.4 lbs.
Binding  Softcover
Release Date   Jan 1, 2007
Publisher   Europa Editions
ISBN  1933372249  
ISBN13  9781933372242  

Availability  0 units.

More About Alfred Hayes

Register your artisan biography and upload your photo! Poet, screenwriter, and novelist, Alfred Hayes, was one of the most important American writers of the 1950s and 1960s. Twice nominated for Academy Awards, he wrote films for Fellini, de Sica (The Bicycle Thief), Rossellini (Paisan), Zinnemann, and Fritz Lang (Clash By Night). His novels include In Love, and My Face For the World to See. He died in 1985.

Alfred Hayes was born in 1911 and died in 1985.

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Product Categories

1Books > Subjects > Literature & Fiction > General > Contemporary
2Books > Subjects > Literature & Fiction > General > Literary
3Books > Subjects > Mystery & Thrillers > General

Reviews - What do customers think about The Girl on the Via Flaminia?

"You may have Leonardo da Vinci, but we've got U.S. Steel."  Jun 20, 2007
The liberation of Rome during World War II was not a "liberation" to many of its inhabitants, once the occupying American and British armies took up residence. Many Italians resented what they regarded as the occupiers' sense of entitlement and superiority. Perfectly capturing the atmosphere and mood of this unique point at the end of World War II, author Alfred Hayes creates a microcosm of Roman life through the Pulcini family on the Via Flaminia. Adele, the mother, needing funds and food, turns her dining room into a small café for a handful of American and British soldiers in the evening, and, if they need "company," she arranges for them to meet Italian women.

When one resident leaves, the Pulcinis' maid arranges for her friend Lisa, desperate for food and shelter, to move into the empty room and to pose as the wife of an American soldier. Robert, the "husband," is a lonely young American who wants company--not a prostitute--someone to talk to, and even, perhaps, to take to bed--but he especially wants a sense of "home," which he hopes Lisa will provide. Their awkward relationship is sensitively rendered. Lisa regards Robert as a "barbarian conqueror" and has no desire to know him better. Robert tries clumsily to establish some sort of communication, but he fails to understand that Lisa has her own needs which go beyond food and shelter. Against this backdrop of failed connections and conflict looms Antonio, the Pulcinis' son. A soldier wounded during the retreat from southern Italy, the proud Antonio sees himself as the defender of Italian values and culture. He believes Lisa is an honest married woman, a noble example of Italian womanhood, but he soon adds to the conflicts.

As much a drama as it is a novel, this book perfectly captures each person's misguided attempt to carve out a "home" during the Occupation. The themes of occupier vs. occupied, military "conquerors" vs. prideful populations who do not regard themselves as "conquered," and individuals caught up in personal crises within a governing structure over which they have no control are as universal and a propos today as they were almost sixty years ago when this book was originally written. Author Albert Hayes gives each of the main characters his/her own point of view, enhancing the reader's understanding of the conflicts which brew beneath the surface.

When the Italian police arrive and the turning point occurs, the characters have been so carefully drawn and the symbolism (a snake in the water, a crippled owl, Antonio himself) has been presented so clearly that no careful reader will be surprised by the outcome. Written in 1949, this novel (newly reprinted by Europa Editions), is filled with vibrant dialogue which reveals character and reflects Hayes's experience as a much-honored screenwriter. His characters and their troubles resonate long after the book is finished. n Mary Whipple

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