Customer Review

Reviewed in Australia on 5 May 2017
And still amazing, but hitherto untold, stories of heroism and daring emerge from the horrors of WWII. This is the story of Pino Lella, an Italian teenager who, during the German occupation of Italy, found himself, through unforeseen circumstances, chauffeur to General Hans Leyers, Hitler's top man and the Third Reich's most powerful Nazi in Italy. Taking one enormous risk to his life after another, Pino was able to pass on valuable secret enemy information to the Allies. In doing so he displayed almost unbelievable courage, fortitude, persistence and commitment and, despite all the dangers and risks to his life, survived the war and materially helped the Allies' cause.

.Before the telling of Pino's story in "Beneath a Scarlet Sky", only snippets of it were generally known. This was because Pino did not talk about it - he found the memory of it too painful and gut wrenching. The author, however, over many hours, gradually gained the aged Pino's confidence and was able, together with meticulous research, to piece together the amazing story.

For any prospective readers I would make a comment on the author's description of his book as a "novel". Personally, I think this was an over cautious description The story he tells is fundamentally true but, as he explains in his preface, in making the story flow and not read like a straight-out history book he, of necessity, needed to put his wording into people's mouths where no record of the actual original words exist, and describe scenes as seen in his own mind from descriptions by Pino and others where no actual photos still exist. All this he did in a way that was, to the best of his knowledge and judgement, consistent with the facts. So, if you like reading true stories from WWII, don't be put off by the author's own description of his book as a "novel". This is an amazing story and a a page-turner to the very last page.
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4.7 out of 5 stars
4.7 out of 5
21,850 global customer ratings