Arts & Culture

New Book: “Four Women” Set in 1949 North End

Four Women “Quattro Donne”, A North End Love Story by Bennett R. Molinari and Richard C. Molinari is a historical fiction taking place in Boston’s colorful North End in the summer of 1949.

At that time, families lived together in a close-knit community, slightly larger than one square mile. Four Women touches on two cultures, the Italian world with its customs and traditions, and what was termed the American world, existing just beyond its boundaries, focusing on the spontaneity that so often arose through their interaction.

Four Women is about family bonds and the central place the Church played in establishing worship, continuity, community and a feeling of safe harbor. 

This is the story of Lucia, matriarch of her family, widowed for 9 years, and her intense relationship with her three daughters: Angie, Stella and Carmela. Into this mix arises the unexpected love story of Pietro, the son of Velia Conte, a Roman noble woman, and Gerardo Petruzelli, a successful Lawyer, brother of Lucia. Pietro is sent to America to live with his Aunt Lucia and her family for a three-month vacation prior to entering the seminary in Italy.

Plans change, however, when Pietro falls in love with Carla, the overprotected daughter of Egidio Ricci, a local fisherman, upsetting the plans of Pietro’s parents and forbidden by Carla’s family.

The book showcases colorful characters, events and vignettes, and touches on plans to disrupt the romance leading to situations that are sometimes comical, sometimes threatening, sometimes tender, but always motivated by love. 

Four Women is a love story, the intense love between a mother and her daughters, the forbidden love between Pietro and Carla, the love for neighbors in an immigrant neighborhood and the love for the Church they all shared.      

Four Women “Quattro Donne” A North End Love Story is available at R. Del Gaudio Gift Shop, 17 North Square, North End (617-227-5915) (Adjoining Paul Revere House); Post Gazette, 5 Prince Street, North End;  Barbara’s Bestsellers at South Station (857 263 8737);;;; and Barnes and

One Reply to “New Book: “Four Women” Set in 1949 North End

  1. I have read this great little book !! Finally someone took the love that we grew up with and put it in written words !!!
    The opinions and consensus of outsiders hearing about the Famous or Infamous North End of Boston, have thus far revolved around violence or street incidences of the day! I recommend this book written by two local men, that express how tightly woven our solid family life was, and how it trickled into our future loyal-stand-up people that we are today !!!
    Thank You to the Molinari Brothers~~~~Benny and Richard

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