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It is the winter of 1942, and the world is at war. A few Jewish musicians attempt to flee the Nazi death grip, each desperately trying to navigate his own path to safety. With the courageous aid and kindness of strangers, they soon find themselves in Rome, where under the highly secret help of the Vatican, they are hidden in Bellafortuna, a small village in Sicily. The res It is the winter of 1942, and the world is at war. A few Jewish musicians attempt to flee the Nazi death grip, each desperately trying to navigate his own path to safety. With the courageous aid and kindness of strangers, they soon find themselves in Rome, where under the highly secret help of the Vatican, they are hidden in Bellafortuna, a small village in Sicily. The residents of Bellafortuna welcome them and care for them, and for a fleeting moment, the horrors the musicians are facing are forgotten while residing in the beautiful, idyllic landscape of Sicily. But word soon reaches the small village that Italy has surrendered, now making Germany at war with Italy. War quickly comes to the village as the Germans storm into Sicily to repel the Allied advance. As Bellafortuna becomes front and center in the raging war, the villagers rise as one to try and protect and save the Jews hiding in their midst. Failure to keep them hidden will mean death to those under their protection . . . and perhaps even to the villagers themselves. An intricately plotted and meticulously researched novel, Saving the Music demonstrates how, in the face of death and unspeakable horror, the strength of the human spirit of ordinary people can shine bright through the darkness. ADVANCE REVIEWS "In Saving the Music, author Chip LoCoco writes of the efforts undertaken by common villagers, priests, and even a Pope to protect Jews from the Nazis. He vividly depicts the horrors faced by the Jews as they confront the Holocaust. Filled with real heroism and high drama, this book brings perspective and depth to its subject. It's an exciting read on an important topic, and I strongly recommend it." -Ronald Rychlak, Author of Hitler, the War, and the Pope * * * "This is a well composed novel that captures key moments of the Holocaust as it relates to the Italian people. I highly recommend it." -Professor Vincent Lapomarda, S.J., Author of The Jesuits and the Third Reich * * * "This is a well-researched novel and reflects the situation as it then existed, hopefully, never to return." -Fr. Peter Gumpel, S.J., postulator of the cause of beautification for Pius XII * * * "Chip LoCoco's novel, Saving the Music, is a realistic fact-based story of pain, fear and true heroism. The premise is solidly grounded on documented facts of the actions of the Catholic Church under the Pontificate of Pope Pius XII down to priests and individual Catholics. Saving the Music is an exciting and engrossing read, which joins the list of wonderful truth-based books of late that is shedding light on the truth ending the worst character assassination of the 20th Century. Bravo." -Gary L. Krupp, Author of Pope Pius XII and World War II- The Documented Truth


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It is the winter of 1942, and the world is at war. A few Jewish musicians attempt to flee the Nazi death grip, each desperately trying to navigate his own path to safety. With the courageous aid and kindness of strangers, they soon find themselves in Rome, where under the highly secret help of the Vatican, they are hidden in Bellafortuna, a small village in Sicily. The res It is the winter of 1942, and the world is at war. A few Jewish musicians attempt to flee the Nazi death grip, each desperately trying to navigate his own path to safety. With the courageous aid and kindness of strangers, they soon find themselves in Rome, where under the highly secret help of the Vatican, they are hidden in Bellafortuna, a small village in Sicily. The residents of Bellafortuna welcome them and care for them, and for a fleeting moment, the horrors the musicians are facing are forgotten while residing in the beautiful, idyllic landscape of Sicily. But word soon reaches the small village that Italy has surrendered, now making Germany at war with Italy. War quickly comes to the village as the Germans storm into Sicily to repel the Allied advance. As Bellafortuna becomes front and center in the raging war, the villagers rise as one to try and protect and save the Jews hiding in their midst. Failure to keep them hidden will mean death to those under their protection . . . and perhaps even to the villagers themselves. An intricately plotted and meticulously researched novel, Saving the Music demonstrates how, in the face of death and unspeakable horror, the strength of the human spirit of ordinary people can shine bright through the darkness. ADVANCE REVIEWS "In Saving the Music, author Chip LoCoco writes of the efforts undertaken by common villagers, priests, and even a Pope to protect Jews from the Nazis. He vividly depicts the horrors faced by the Jews as they confront the Holocaust. Filled with real heroism and high drama, this book brings perspective and depth to its subject. It's an exciting read on an important topic, and I strongly recommend it." -Ronald Rychlak, Author of Hitler, the War, and the Pope * * * "This is a well composed novel that captures key moments of the Holocaust as it relates to the Italian people. I highly recommend it." -Professor Vincent Lapomarda, S.J., Author of The Jesuits and the Third Reich * * * "This is a well-researched novel and reflects the situation as it then existed, hopefully, never to return." -Fr. Peter Gumpel, S.J., postulator of the cause of beautification for Pius XII * * * "Chip LoCoco's novel, Saving the Music, is a realistic fact-based story of pain, fear and true heroism. The premise is solidly grounded on documented facts of the actions of the Catholic Church under the Pontificate of Pope Pius XII down to priests and individual Catholics. Saving the Music is an exciting and engrossing read, which joins the list of wonderful truth-based books of late that is shedding light on the truth ending the worst character assassination of the 20th Century. Bravo." -Gary L. Krupp, Author of Pope Pius XII and World War II- The Documented Truth

30 review for Saving the Music

  1. 5 out of 5

    Amy Bruno

    "Even in silence, there is music." WOW, I was not prepared for how amazing this book was! From the absolutely gorgeous Preface to the bittersweet and heartwarming ending, I was completely captivated by the author's words. Saving the Music tells the story of 15 Jewish musicians and their families that were saved from the Nazis by a network of Resistance workers that help smuggle them into a small town in Sicily, Bellafortuna, where the people in town help hide them and keep them safe, despite the "Even in silence, there is music." WOW, I was not prepared for how amazing this book was! From the absolutely gorgeous Preface to the bittersweet and heartwarming ending, I was completely captivated by the author's words. Saving the Music tells the story of 15 Jewish musicians and their families that were saved from the Nazis by a network of Resistance workers that help smuggle them into a small town in Sicily, Bellafortuna, where the people in town help hide them and keep them safe, despite the danger that would come upon them if they were ever found out. "Bellafortuna is a special place. It's a place of decency where music and opera thrive. With so much hate in the world, it stands in stark contrast with its good-heartedness, grace, decency, and love. It is a place of light in the darkness. What better way for the world to see its spirit than for the entire village to save other souls." Told with exquisite writing and full of intrigue, danger, hope, and the power of fighting injustice, I highly recommend Saving the Music. I can't wait to go back and read the first book in the series!

  2. 5 out of 5

    Vincent LoCoco

    Here are some Advance Reviews for Saving the Music. "In Saving the Music, author Chip LoCoco writes of the efforts undertaken by common villagers, priests, and even a Pope to protect Jews from the Nazis. He vividly depicts the horrors faced by the Jews as they confront the Holocaust. Filled with real heroism and high drama, this book brings perspective and depth to its subject. It's an exciting read on an important topic, and I strongly recommend it." -Ronald Rychlak, Author of Hitler, the War, an Here are some Advance Reviews for Saving the Music. "In Saving the Music, author Chip LoCoco writes of the efforts undertaken by common villagers, priests, and even a Pope to protect Jews from the Nazis. He vividly depicts the horrors faced by the Jews as they confront the Holocaust. Filled with real heroism and high drama, this book brings perspective and depth to its subject. It's an exciting read on an important topic, and I strongly recommend it." -Ronald Rychlak, Author of Hitler, the War, and the Pope * * * "This is a well composed novel that captures key moments of the Holocaust as it relates to the Italian people. I highly recommend it." -Professor Vincent Lapomarda, S.J., Author of The Jesuits and the Third Reich * * * "This is a well-researched novel and reflects the situation as it then existed, hopefully, never to return." -Fr. Peter Gumpel, S.J., postulator of the cause of beautification for Pius XII * * * "Chip LoCoco's novel, Saving the Music, is a realistic fact-based story of pain, fear and true heroism. The premise is solidly grounded on documented facts of the actions of the Catholic Church under the Pontificate of Pope Pius XII down to priests and individual Catholics. Saving the Music is an exciting and engrossing read, which joins the list of wonderful truth-based books of late that is shedding light on the truth ending the worst character assassination of the 20th Century. Bravo." -Gary L. Krupp, Author of Pope Pius XII and World War II- The Documented Truth

  3. 4 out of 5

    gwendalyn _books_

    This book was received from the Author, and Publisher, in exchange for an honest review. Opinions and thoughts expressed in this review are completely my own. From the incredible New Orleans author, Chip LoCoco, comes his second novel, Saving the Music. Bellafortuna, has been nationally recognized, being named a Short List Finalist in the William Faulkner Writing Competition and awarded the B.R.A.G. Award in Historical Fiction. Mr. LoCoco is a member of the Italian American Writers Association. Ch This book was received from the Author, and Publisher, in exchange for an honest review. Opinions and thoughts expressed in this review are completely my own. From the incredible New Orleans author, Chip LoCoco, comes his second novel, Saving the Music. Bellafortuna, has been nationally recognized, being named a Short List Finalist in the William Faulkner Writing Competition and awarded the B.R.A.G. Award in Historical Fiction. Mr. LoCoco is a member of the Italian American Writers Association. Chip LoCoco's latest novel, Saving the Music, is an exceptionally written thought provoking historical fiction. This is an emotional charged, faced paced, gripping tale that portrays the horrors and suffering the people endured under the weight of the Third Reich. Ludwig Adler and his family, along with several musicians barley escapes the Nazis regime, as they seek to eradicate all Jews from every territory that is German occupied. Fleeing for their lives, they journey through Switzerland, and eventually they make to Italy. There they find help within Catholic Church. As the Holy Church’s stealth mission, to save as many Jewish people lives from the death grip of the Nazis. They are Smuggled to a very tiny village in mountains outside of Palermo.
The courageous actions of the cautious, diplomatic, Pontificate of Pope Pius XII, along with the large complex web of priest, together with Italian villagers help to secure the fleeing Jews. Lulled by the picturesque landscape and musicians almost forget the horrors, until Italy announces its surrender. Chip LoCoco writing is with precision and depth, he keeps the pace brisk and vividly rendered. 
The authors seamless narration, beautiful prose will have you completely immersed within this absorbing book. The fleshed out characters were incredibly realistic and endearing. A stunning heartwarming dynamic historical fiction, that I found myself captivated by the first page. 
An incredible compassionate novel, that captures the heroism of the people, who risked everything to help those who were targeted by horrific third Reich. This book is a superb novel, that will transport you with its historical atmospheric imagery, and engaging musical elements. An absorbing riveting book, that will stay with you long after you close the book.

  4. 4 out of 5

    Stephanie

    As the war rages on in 1942, a group of Jewish musicians are being rounded up onto trains by Nazis. Through the relentless work of resistance members and friends, they are hidden away and freed from the trains.  At the same time Pope Pious XII is debating what to say publicly about the massive loss of life at the hands of the Nazis.  Making the difficult decision to retain neutrality, Pope Pious XII quietly assists in the relocation of thousands of Jews, including a special group of musicians.  As the war rages on in 1942, a group of Jewish musicians are being rounded up onto trains by Nazis. Through the relentless work of resistance members and friends, they are hidden away and freed from the trains.  At the same time Pope Pious XII is debating what to say publicly about the massive loss of life at the hands of the Nazis.  Making the difficult decision to retain neutrality, Pope Pious XII quietly assists in the relocation of thousands of Jews, including a special group of musicians.  With the assistance of Father Biaggio Sanguinetti, the group of fifteen Jews finds a new home and new identities in the small Italian town of Bellafortuna where they find how to create music together.  When the German's occupy Bellafortuna, the residents use their ingenuity to keep everyone safe and when the Nazi's threaten the Roman Ghetto, the Pope's network and the Italian people come together to save as many people as they can. Saving the Music is a beautiful story of hope and fear during World War II.  Set in the fictional village of Bellafortuna, Sicily, the stories of several characters from A Song for Bellafortuna are continued, but it is not necessary to read beforehand. The theme of music is strong within the story and is what brings everyone together regardless of religion or language and keeps spirits high during the darkest of times.  The characters are all wonderfully created and quickly became people that I cared about.  The writing skillfully showcased the beauty of Bellafortuna and the resident's immense capacity to care for others.  While Bellafortuna is fictional, the actions of the Italian people and Pope Pious XII were very real.  Reading about the Pope's difficult decisions that were made to save lives, all while receiving criticism for not speaking out against Hitler's atrocities was profound showing that true heroes do not act in order to receive praise, but will gladly risk themselves in order to do what is right.   This book was received for free in return for an honest review. 

  5. 5 out of 5

    Joel Epstein

    "Saving the Music" by Vincent LoCoco is a courageous book. Courageous because it dives into a virulent and intensely personal historical argument about the role of the Catholic Church, and of Pope Pius XII, in the Holocaust of World War II. One camp sees the Pope as a compassionate and fearless leader, who wisely maintained the neutrality of the Vatican while directing an operation to assist thousands of Jews to escape the Nazi death camps. The other camp sees the Pope as a coward, who knew of t "Saving the Music" by Vincent LoCoco is a courageous book. Courageous because it dives into a virulent and intensely personal historical argument about the role of the Catholic Church, and of Pope Pius XII, in the Holocaust of World War II. One camp sees the Pope as a compassionate and fearless leader, who wisely maintained the neutrality of the Vatican while directing an operation to assist thousands of Jews to escape the Nazi death camps. The other camp sees the Pope as a coward, who knew of the extermination of the Jews but refused to condemn it and, through his silence, was complicit in the crimes of the Nazis. In this dispute, author LoCoco takes a strong and eloquent stand. In his novel, Pope Pius XII weeps privately for the horrible crimes that he cannot condemn, because condemning them would endanger the massive rescue operation that the Church was running, through its emissaries throughout Europe. Though a work of fiction, the portrayal of the Pope and of those Church officials surrounding him is compelling and convincing. The Pope is not the central character of this book. The plot centers around a group of Jewish musicians whom the Vatican rescue operation snatches out of the clutches of the Nazis and hides in a small hilltop village in Sicily. A series of knuckle-biting mishaps almost expose them to the German occupiers, making for a thrilling story. But, while the Pope may not be the main character, his presence permeates the story. It is this presence that makes the book a masterful novel. Joel Epstein, author of "The Language of the Heart" https://www.amazon.com/Language-Heart...

  6. 5 out of 5

    Annette

    My Thoughts: I was excited to read a story that's setting is in Italy and Sicily. I was excited to read a story that has the pope and the Catholic Church as characters. I didn't know the history of Jews living in Rome nor their plight during the Holocaust until reading this book. These are strong reasons this book is unique from other World War II stories. Other reasons why I love this story: ~History and archaeology research and discoveries are presented in the story about the early Christian ch My Thoughts: I was excited to read a story that's setting is in Italy and Sicily. I was excited to read a story that has the pope and the Catholic Church as characters. I didn't know the history of Jews living in Rome nor their plight during the Holocaust until reading this book. These are strong reasons this book is unique from other World War II stories. Other reasons why I love this story: ~History and archaeology research and discoveries are presented in the story about the early Christian church, Peter, and the Catholic Church. ~Courage and resilience in the people who hid Jews or escorted them to safe places. I'm amazed at their ability to be valiant in the face of possible death. ~I enjoyed reading Chip LoCoco's research regarding the book. ~Saving the Music showed me strength is sometimes in quietness. There were courageous people who risked certain death, but there were people in the background who persevered without notice. ~Saving the Music is a page-turner. ~LoCoco has an engaging writing style. ~The dialogue and characters are believable. ~The ending is deeply satisfyingly. Source: I received a complimentary eBook copy from Amy Bruno of Historical Fiction Virtual Book Tours, but was not required to write a positive review.

  7. 4 out of 5

    Gayle

    Looking at the cover of this book would you think that it is the story of Pope PiusXII and the Catholic Church and their role in protecting, hiding and saving Jews in Rome and throughout Italy? This tells of a people in a time that is well known but in a very personal way that is fascinating, intriguing, enlightening and helps us remember the great good in humanity. Many of the characters are real and others seem to truly be actual people living these events. There is great attention to detail i Looking at the cover of this book would you think that it is the story of Pope PiusXII and the Catholic Church and their role in protecting, hiding and saving Jews in Rome and throughout Italy? This tells of a people in a time that is well known but in a very personal way that is fascinating, intriguing, enlightening and helps us remember the great good in humanity. Many of the characters are real and others seem to truly be actual people living these events. There is great attention to detail in places and events that surely required much research and adds to the authenticity of the story. Much of the dialog between characters is profound and full of good reasoning and intent and even wisdom and could and should be quoted in our time today. This book touched my heart and soul and had a great impact on my mind that will stay with me and may make it one of my ten best books to read in my lifetime.

  8. 4 out of 5

    Dr Honora

    Appreciate the research Often stated this book is fiction, yet one can tell an exorbitant amount of research was done. Having been to Assisi, Rome and the Vatican and remember Pope Pious XII as a Catholic school girl, I could image myself walking among the Italians and Jew refugees, musicians, shopkeepers, villagers and clergy.

  9. 4 out of 5

    gerry

    Appreciate this story that has opened my eyes to historical "fake news". Some of the information we carry around in our heads is not always true. I had learned through history classes and publications that the Pope sympathized with the Nazis during WW2. This novel presents an alternative story, one I believe is true, based on Mr LoCoco's research notes at the end of the book. This novel is a beautiful narrative of love, hope, faith and sacrifice. I highly recommend it. Appreciate this story that has opened my eyes to historical "fake news". Some of the information we carry around in our heads is not always true. I had learned through history classes and publications that the Pope sympathized with the Nazis during WW2. This novel presents an alternative story, one I believe is true, based on Mr LoCoco's research notes at the end of the book. This novel is a beautiful narrative of love, hope, faith and sacrifice. I highly recommend it.

  10. 5 out of 5

    Aletha Pagett

    This outstanding work of historical fiction, addresses the involvement of Pope Pius XII in saving thousands of Jews during the Holocaust. It provides a different perspective than what is frequently heard. The epilogue is incredibly interesting as it shares the post war experiences of the characters. This e-book was received through Goodreads.

  11. 5 out of 5

    Teresa

    I loved this book I received it in a giveaway on Goodreads. It gave me a different look on the Catholic Church and the Jewish refugees struggled during this time. I am now reading the first book A Song for Bellafortuna. So far I am loving this one also.

  12. 4 out of 5

    Martha Ringer

    A very good book, and an excellent story. The author tells the story of musicians from Germany and Austria as they flee their home countries, to Italy and on to Sicily and Bellafotuna . I really enjoy the way Mr. LoCoco tells us a story!

  13. 4 out of 5

    Rhoda Becker

    Saving The Music As I read I knew it was a novel. It kept me fascinated as much because I had heard about the Pope’s involvement with the Jews before. I was anxious to read the authour’s notes to see what he had to say about the Pope. The characters were well drawn.

  14. 5 out of 5

    Kat

    Excellent! This book had me from the first page! Beautifully written. Followed up with the two sequels. Great reads!

  15. 4 out of 5

    Eileen Iciek

    A fast paced novel about Jewish musicians hidden in Sicily during World War II. The story focuses on Ludwig Adler and his family from Munich, and their tortuous journey trying to escape death in the Holocaust. After escaping Germany, through Switzerland, and eventually down to Rome where the Catholic Church is busy trying to save as many Jews as possible. Adler and his family, and other musicians from Austria are smuggled to the tiny village of Bellafortuna in the mountains outside of Palermo. Th A fast paced novel about Jewish musicians hidden in Sicily during World War II. The story focuses on Ludwig Adler and his family from Munich, and their tortuous journey trying to escape death in the Holocaust. After escaping Germany, through Switzerland, and eventually down to Rome where the Catholic Church is busy trying to save as many Jews as possible. Adler and his family, and other musicians from Austria are smuggled to the tiny village of Bellafortuna in the mountains outside of Palermo. The story corrects some popular historic inaccuracies of how Italy treated its Jewish citizens during the war, while never letting the pace slow. I did drop it down a star since the book could have used better copy editing. Recommended.

  16. 4 out of 5

    Lizabeth

    Interesting history. I always learned the pope was silent- Didn’t do enough. Perhaps at the start he could have had an impact with a great speech of condemnation... however, that didn’t happen. His reticence later on demonstrated his calculations of saving as many Jews through underground operations. Primo Levi’s account contrasts with this one- the treatment of Jews by fascist Italians ... but the evidence of those saved specifically by the church and citizens need consideration. The story itsel Interesting history. I always learned the pope was silent- Didn’t do enough. Perhaps at the start he could have had an impact with a great speech of condemnation... however, that didn’t happen. His reticence later on demonstrated his calculations of saving as many Jews through underground operations. Primo Levi’s account contrasts with this one- the treatment of Jews by fascist Italians ... but the evidence of those saved specifically by the church and citizens need consideration. The story itself of the musicians and Bellafortuna was quite enchanting. As I prepare for my own visit to Sicily... I’d like to explore this area if it truly exists today. The book was poorly edited... words missing, wrong word (autocorrect?) ... was a bit distracting.

  17. 5 out of 5

    Eileen

    I absolutely loved this. As a third generation Sicilian American I thoroughly enjoyed the rich historical and cultural perspective. Hoping for book #3 in the Bellafortuna series.

  18. 4 out of 5

    Danie vd Merwe

  19. 5 out of 5

    Sandra Mears

  20. 5 out of 5

    Joyce Christensen

  21. 5 out of 5

    David Boyd

  22. 4 out of 5

    rachael salvesen

  23. 5 out of 5

    Roberta T ODowd

  24. 4 out of 5

    Q Ford Wilson

  25. 5 out of 5

    David Wheelington

  26. 4 out of 5

    Kristin Davis

  27. 4 out of 5

    Patricia Alberto

  28. 5 out of 5

    Catherine Veque

  29. 4 out of 5

    Nivia Tepedino

  30. 4 out of 5

    Suzanne Leclaire

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