Under a Sardinian Sky is an ode to the colourful Sardinian clan from which I sprung, inspired by an aunt whose shadow trailed me until the story found its way out at long last. I hope the book brings a little Sardinian sunshine to the folks who read it and perhaps a glimpse of what life might have felt like in the post war reawakening of a small seaside town on an island surrounded by turquoise sea, dotted with ancient ruins, vast forests inland, that to this day, may still inhabited by those dabble in magic….
“A beautifully told story about one woman’s determination to exorcise the sorrows of her family’s past. It brought tears to my eyes more than once—always a good sign. I look forward to reading more novels by Sara Alexander.”
—Holly Chamberlin, author of Home for the Summer
Set against the beautiful backdrop of post-World War II Sardinia, Sara Alexander’s evocative novel is a sweeping story of star-crossed romance between an American lieutenant and a local girl.
Sometimes a family’s deepest silences hide the most important secrets. For Mina, a London-based travel writer, the enigmatic silence surrounding her aunt Carmela has become a personal obsession. Carmela disappeared from her Italian hometown long ago and is mentioned only in fragments and whispers. Mina has resisted prying, respectful of her family’s Sardinian reserve. But now, with her mother battling cancer, it’s time to learn the truth.
In 1952, Simius is a busy Sardinian town surrounded by fertile farms and orchards. Carmela Chirigoni, a farmer’s daughter and talented seamstress, is engaged to Franco, son of the area’s wealthiest family. Everyone agrees it’s a good match. But Carmela’s growing doubts about Franco’s possessiveness are magnified when she meets Captain Joe Kavanagh. Joe, an American officer stationed at a local army base, is charismatic, intelligent, and married. Hired as his interpreter, Carmela resolves to ignore her feelings, knowing that any future together must bring upheaval and heartache to both families.
As Mina follows the threads of Carmela’s life to uncover her fate, she will discover a past still deeply alive in the present, revealing a story of hope, sacrifice, and extraordinary love.
“Like Sardinia’s Emerald Coast, Sara Alexander’s Under A Sardinian Sky will dazzle you with its glittering descriptions of the Mediterranean island, its exquisite culinary treasures, and authentic, beautiful people. But it is the heroine Carmela’s courage and heartbreaking choices that will leave you the most enchanted and racing through the novel to learn her extraordinary fate.”
—Rosanna Chiofalo, author of Rosalia’s Bittersweet Pastry Shop