Paradiso series

Author: Scanacapra, Francesca

Publication Date:

May 2021



Original language and publisher

English | Silvertail Books

Territories Handled

France, Netherlands, Scandinavia

Territories Sold

Italy (Newton Compton)


Debut Novel, Historical Fiction, WWII

Paradiso series

Author: Scanacapra, Francesca


A charming portrait of a child’s life in Italy in the aftermath of WW2: fascinating, heart-breaking and uplifting in equal measure. – Chrissie Manby, bestselling author


  • #2 on Amazon UK in the Hot New Releases category and #11 in Italian Historical Fiction

In a country emerging from the turmoil of war, a girl’s story of courage and secret begins …

Italy, 1937. In a tiny village in rural Lombardy, Graziella Ponti is born into a loving family. Though they are not rich and life is full of challenges, they are content and safe, surrounded by the tightly-knit community of Pieve Santa Clara. But when the shadow of World War Two falls across the village with the arrival of Nazi soldiers, nothing in young Graziella’s life will ever be the same again.

Paradiso is Graziella’s story. It charts her loves, losses and triumphs as she grows up in post-war Italy, a country in transformation, freed from the shackles of dictatorship yet still gripped by the restraints of the Catholic Church.

Paradiso is inspired by true stories told to Francesca Scanacapra by her Italian family and set in locations where she spent much of her childhood. It is a deeply affecting novel which sheds light on the complexity and trauma of Italy’s past and weaves it into the epic tale of an ordinary woman compelled to live in extraordinary times.



  • #1 Historical Italian Fiction, Amazon UK 

Italy, 1950. The hardships of war are being consigned to the past and the dawn of a new decade brings with it the promise of lasting peace and prosperity. In Pieve Santa Clara, a tiny village in rural Lombardy, Graziella Ponti, now a teenager, lives a simple life with her widowed mother and aunt. But Italy is transforming around Graziella at great speed and, as her childhood gives way to the start of her womanhood, she must learn to navigate this ever-changing new world.

Return to Paradiso is a story of love, hope and tragedy set in Italy at a time when the Economic Miracle was in full swing, the grip of the Catholic Church was loosening, and the role of women in society was progressing.




Marketing Information

For fans of Elena Ferrante, Sebastian Faulks, Fiona Valpy, Santa Montefiore, Irene Nemirovsky, Dinah Jeffries, Victoria Hislop, Heather Morris, The Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society.