Here is the review I wrote about Angelo Crapanzano’s novel, “Notorious Casolini.”
“A Tragedy, An Adventure, and A Masterpiece of Revenge and Justice”
I just had the pleasure of reading Notorious Casolini by Angelo Crapanzano and I thoroughly enjoyed this book! Inspired by true events that occurred in the city of Barrafranca, Sicily, in the early 1900s, the book chronicles the life of Peppino Casolini, a simple farmer who is thrust into events over which he has no control. When the son of a powerful local politician desires Peppino’s sister for his own and is rejected, Peppino finds himself wrongly imprisoned for the death of a friend. One by one, the members of his family suffer at the hands of the local politician’s family and henchmen. Upon escaping the fate they have planned for him, Peppino determines to extract justice for the wrongs visited upon his family.
The author successfully created an incredible cast of characters and brings the reader into their world – a world filled with injustice, fear, murder, and retribution. The reader is shown the joys and pains these characters experienced in their daily lives, and the author weaved a plot that links these characters together in a series of life-altering events that leave the reader reading faster and faster to see how the events play out. Make no mistake – this book is a tragedy, but rather than the usual tragic story, the author creates a tale of adventure that shows the power of the human spirit to go on even when everything seems lost and impossible. The main character has ample justification for completing the tragic cycle started by his family, but he finds not only the will to persevere, but the strength to break the cycle and live his life on his own terms, rather than as a victim of circumstances.
This was an outstanding book written by one of the best story-tellers I’ve had the pleasure to come across in many years. I cannot recommend it enough to anyone who likes stories filled with human drama, action, justice and revenge. I cannot wait to read more from this author.