What We May Become

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Pub Date 07 Jun 2022 | Archive Date Not set

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Description

In 1945 secrets hidden at an Italian estate could prove just as vital to humanity's fate as the war efforts on the frontlines . . . if nurse Diana Bolsena can get to them first.

Tuscany, 1945. As the war in Europe ends, American Red Cross nurse Diana Bolsena finds herself separated from her unit. Unable to reconnect with the American army, she's left to survive with nothing but her spirit, her talents as a nurse, and her nightmares of the horror of war.

Determined to return to active duty in the Pacific, to earn her way back Diana begins caring for a child with disabilities on the estate of the enigmatic Signora Bugari. Amidst the ravages of war, it is a peaceful existence until a visiting German officer, Herr Adler, arrives demanding Bugari return what is rightfully his.

When a shocking murder attracts more people to the isolated estate, Diana suspects Adler's hidden secrets could affect the course of history. But who will uncover them first? And what will happen to humanity if they fall into the wrong hands?

In 1945 secrets hidden at an Italian estate could prove just as vital to humanity's fate as the war efforts on the frontlines . . . if nurse Diana Bolsena can get to them first.

Tuscany, 1945. As the...


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ISBN 9781448308675
PRICE $28.99 (USD)

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Featured Reviews

Redolent of The English Patient, Teresa Messineo's What We May Become, is the story of Diana Bolsena, a US Army nurse, separated from her unit at the end of WW2 in Italy.

While trying to reconnect with her Army unit and so continue nursing in the Pacific, Diana finds herself employed first in a small-time brothel and then on a Tuscan estate, employed by the wealthy and somewhat enigmatic owner, Signora Bugari. An ex-Nazi officer, Adler, arrives at the Estate and demands a hidden secret from Bugari. Bugari is clearly terrified of Adler who is aware that the estate was occupied and used by the Nazis and therefore still contains valuable secrets which he believes have great value. Diana is warned to stay away from Adler but she can't help her curiosity. The story takes a dramatic turn before an Italian-American enters the story and races the plot on to an intense conclusion. 

The story is well-written, thoroughly and evocatively descriptive, generating Diana's vivid dreams and recollections as well as painting a romantic landscape of post-WW2 Tuscany. The characters are mostly well-developed, albeit with mysterious, undertold pasts, as was likely the case in real life post-war Italy. 

I enjoyed reading the book, especially conjuring the romance of that setting, but also wondering about the realities of people trying to survive during WW2 Italy with its changing loyalties. I appreciated the debate about whether to make use of human research gathered during WW2: to benefit or not from human suffering. Mostly, I enjoyed the interplay between the characters and the setting.

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I have been a fan of Teresa Messineo's since she stunned me with her incredible first book 'The Fire by Night.' So I was very excited to learn of a new book being published by her! (Thank you Netgalley for this ARC)! Now I know that I will enjoy whatever she writes, and 'What We May Become was no different. Her writing is lyrical, poetic. The descriptions of Tuscany were breath-taking, and I could easily imagine myself there, with the main character, in the Italian Estate. At first, the book gave me "The English Patient" vibes, but as the pages turned, what surfaced was a beautifully written novel about the intricacies difficulties, and realities of war. Although I consider myself well-versed in WWII history, I learned more about the German Occupation of Italy, and was very impressed with the research done by the author.
I really, really enjoyed the premise, loved the main characters, and overall spent a very happy day immersing myself into this tantalizing story. This is an excellent book and comes highly recommended!

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A very enjoyable read set during wartime Europe with the main part centred on Italy. Diana is displaced by the war and the story follows her during her effort to get back to nursing solders who are injured.
I found it a nice read and the setting of the the old lady and the big mansion house was a delight.
Thoroughly enjoyable book which has intrigue galore.

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This short novel pokes at one of the less explored corners of WWII- post War Italy coping with the impact of the Nazi occupation. Diana, an American nurse, finds there's a secret at the villa where she's been working when Adler. a former Nazi, turns up and makes demands. No spoilers from me as to what that is and what happens but know that there are a few surprises. This is engaging but the subject matter might have been better served by a longer novel. Regardless, rooted for Diana. Thanks to Netgalley for the ARC.

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