Early One Morning by Virginia Baily

bookshelves: autumn-2015, play-dramatisation, published-2015, radio-4, italy, wwii, italy-rome, wales-cardiff, britain-wales, kleptomania, recreational-drugs, hype-tinted-glasses

Recommended for: BBC Radio Listeners
Read from October 14 to 24, 2015

http://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/b06gw3jz

Description: Italy 1943. Chiara flees Rome for the countryside with her sister, Cecilia and Daniele, the small Jewish boy she has saved from the Nazis’ clearance of the Rome ghetto.

Thirty years later, in 1973, Chiara has lost touch with her troubled, junkie adoptive son, but she must now decide how to deal with the young Welsh teenager who keep phoning her and who claims to be Daniele’s daughter.

Greta Scacchi, Juliet Aubrey and Sophie Melville star in a dramatization of Virginia Baily’s new novel, which moves between Nazi-occupied Rome and 1973.

1/10: Rome 1943. A split-second decision is about to change Chiara’s life forever.

2/10: Rome 1943: Chiara has to flee Rome with the Jewish boy she is sheltering.

3/10: Chiara leaves Rome for the countryside with her charge, Daniele.

4/10: Chiara has to learn how to be a mother

5/10: Chiara prepares to host Welsh teenager who claims to be Daniele’s daughter.

6/10: Italy 1943. Chiara and Cecilia are living with their grandmother in a remote farmhouse, where they shelter passing deserters and Daniele, the small Jewish boy Chiara saved from the Nazis.

7/10: Italy 1943. A Nazi officer officer arrives at the remote farmhouse where Chiara is hiding her young Jewish charge, Daniele. Thirty years later, in Rome 1973, Chiara is showing Welsh teenager, Maria, around Rome. Maria believes that Chiara is Daniele’s former landlady and knows nothing about Daniele’s past, or that Chiara has not seen her troubled adoptive son in over a decade.

8/10: Italy 1944. Chiara and her young Jewish charge, Daniele, are back in Rome, where food supplies are scarce. Thirty years later, in 1973, Chiara struggles to know what to say to Daniele’s daughter, a Welsh teenager called Maria, who is staying with her over the summer. Maria knows nothing of Daniele’s past, nor that Chiara has not been in touch with her troubled, adoptive son in over a decade.

9/10: 1944. As American soldiers parade through Rome, Chiara receives some devastating news. 1973. Chiara confides in her oldest friend about her dilemma over Daniele’s teenage daughter, Maria, who doesn’t yet know anything about her father’s past.

10/10: Rome 1973. With Simone’s encouragement, Chiara determines to tell Maria the truth about Daniele and confront her own past.

Somewhat disjointed and messy in execution.

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