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The Fortunate Pilgrim MP3 CD – Audiobook, MP3 Audio, Unabridged

4.4 out of 5 stars 131 customer reviews

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Textbook Amy Krouse Rosenthal
Textbook Amy Krouse Rosenthal
The bestselling author of "Encyclopedia an Ordinary Life" returns with a literary experience that is unprecedented, unforgettable, and explosively human. Hardcover | Kindle book
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Editorial Reviews

From Library Journal

A young girl comes to New York from Italy to marry a man she hardly knows, thus beginning the saga of Lucia Santa and her two marriages, her five children, and her struggle to raise her family in Hell's Kitchen in the early 1900s. Her strength sustains her through troubles, tragedies, and the onslaught of American culture pitted against traditional Italian life. Puzo portrays the family and their development with insight in an engrossing narrative. The conflicts of the Old World and the New as experienced by the children bring both tragedy and happiness, tempered always by Lucia Santa's iron will. John Kenneth reads with gentle strength, pronouncing with fluid grace Italian phrases and names. His characterizations are subtle but effective, and through his emotional coloring of the text, the listener becomes involved in this family's story. Recommended for fiction collections.?Melody A. Moxley, Rowan P.L., Salisbury, N.C.
Copyright 1997 Reed Business Information, Inc. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

From the Inside Flap

efore The Godfather and The Last Don, there was Puzo's classic story about the loves, crimes and struggles confronted by one family of New York City immigrants living in Hell's Kitchen. Fresh from the farms in Italy, Lucia Santa struggles to hold her family together in a strange land. At turns poignant, comic and violent, and with a new preface by the author, The Fortunate Pilgrim is Italian-American fiction at its very best.

"From the Hardcover edition. --This text refers to the Mass Market Paperback edition.

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Product Details

  • MP3 CD
  • Publisher: Brilliance Audio; Library edition (September 18, 2009)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1423396944
  • ISBN-13: 978-1423396949
  • Product Dimensions: 5.4 x 0.5 x 7.5 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 4.8 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (131 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #11,279,746 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Mass Market Paperback
I don't know where to start. I've read "The Godfather" perhaps five times, yet it has taken me decades to pick up "The Fortunate Pilgrim." And what was the result? One of the most beautiful and quietly thrilling reading experiences I've ever had. I've always thought Puzo was an underrated writer, and bristled when he was casually insulted or referred to as a writer of pulp. "The Godfather" is in fact a great novel. But this gem, "The Fortunate Pilgrim" surpassed all my expectations. The writing is very simply poetic and masterly throughout. The style is gorgeously cinematic and seems to reflect the powerful vision of a boy growing up in Hell's Kitchen in New York who truly saw beauty all around him and who let it flood his heart. As I read this book, his vision of that beauty flooded mine. As for the character exploration, it is very simply magnificent. So deep does this novel go into the psyche of the women of this early twentieth century Italian immigrant family that it is nearly impossible to believe that a man wrote this, that he could open his mind and soul so totally to what these female characters suffered and saw and learned and knew. The male characters are no less exquisitely realized. And the world these people inhabited, with their disappointments, losses, hopes and dreams is here captured forever in these pages with exquisite and perfect skill. Over and over I underlined passages and phrases. Over and over I scribbled vocabulary in the back of the book. Such an achievement. --------- I have few regrets about my life but I will always regret that I never met Mario Puzo, that I never encountered him just for a few minutes at a bookstore so that I could tell him what "The Godfather" meant to me as a young writer. And now I miss the guy with all my heart. --- And I miss his generation and all that they witnessed and knew. How grateful I am that he gave us this small, perfect story, so carefully and lovingly crafted for all time.
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Format: Paperback
Mario Puzo took the everyday life of an ordinary Italian immigrant family and turned it into a masterpiece! A treat for the reader. By the end of the book I felt like I know this family personally. His character depth is amazing. After reading this book I have a much better understanding of what my own grandparents went through when they came over from Italy. Living in today's world filled with conveniences, we tend to forget the struggles of the generations before us. I recommend this book to readers of all ages.
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Format: Hardcover
Mario Puzo feels that this novel, written before THE GODFATHER or any of his more popular novels, is superior to them all. In a creative sense, THE FORTUNATE PILGRIM is the parent, and the rest of his books are the offspring.
In the hands of someone like Puzo, the creative process is a wonderful thing to observe. He relates how he set out to write a novel in which he was the hero and the rest of his family were villains who wanted to stifle his writing career; and how, stalwart young man that he was, he succeeded in spite of them and the stumbling blocks they placed in his path. He was unable to write this version of his life, not even as fiction. Truth and the memory of the strength of the woman who reared him wouldn't allow him to deny the impact she had on his life.
Puzo wrote, but not what he had planned, or even what he thought he was writing. At some point he realized that the book wasn't about himself. It was about his mother. THE FORTUNATE PILGRIM's Lucia Santa is the personification of Puzo's mother and this book is her book as surely as if she'd written it herself.
When we read about Lucia Santa's life in Hell's Kitchen, a single mother as we would call her today, as she raises six children, we are constantly amazed at her strength.
Her oldest son becomes a Mafia Union Organizer (read strong arm man and collector of "protection" money) against her will. But Lucia Santa prevails.
Her daughter spends six months in a sanitorium for her lungs and comes home too assimilated for Lucia Santa's taste. But Lucia Santa prevails.
One of her sons commits suicide. But Lucia Santa prevails.
One tragedy follows on the heels of another. But Lucia Santa prevails.
Read more ›
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Format: Paperback
Puzo really takes you back to pre-war "Hells Kitchen". His descriptions are vivid and engaging. Like many of his other books, this one is about family. The reader is shown a struggling mother and her children over a 20 year period. The two female characters (mother and oldest daughter) are truly heroic. It is by their there virtue and perseverance thatt this family can stay together and ultimately prosper. They are the rock that their family and this story are built upon. Its a testament of how stong women can pull a family up by its bootstraps despite the failings of the men.

Puzo's use of Italian (proper, dialect and slang) brings the characters close to home for those readers of Italian-American decent. The vartious Italian-American characters brought back memories of long since past members of my own family.

This book really places your in 1920s-30s new york with all its splendor, virtues, vices and difficulties. It showed me what life was like for my grandparents, aunts and uncles.

This was a very good book that I will read again someday.
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