Fifteen-year-old Mariella yearns for a new life. Since the Germans arrived in Rome, food has been scarce, and danger lurks around every corner. On top of that, she’s haunted by a childhood tragedy and weighed down with the responsibility of caring for her siblings. Everything feels impossible. But when she meets Jack, a handsome American soldier with a crooked smile, her future doesn’t seem so dark. She gives him a tour of the famed Colosseum, then takes him to dinner with her family. Despite the language barrier, their connection is undeniable. They share the same scars. The following day, Jack has to ship off to Japan. Neither wants to say goodbye, but they exchange addresses and promise to keep in touch. Over the following years, they try to move on while sharing snippets of their lives via airmail. But when Mariella goes quiet, Jack can’t ignore his feelings any longer.
This book takes the reader on a journey from war-torn Rome, Italy, to the sandy beaches of Asbury Park, New Jersey, in search of answers to the question – how much is too much to sacrifice for love?
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