Born in 1942 under a bridge in a small war-torn village in southern Italy, Teresa Renda spent the first 17 years of her life searching for the truth of how she came into the world–a secret that no one in her village would speak of–while navigating the only universe she knew: one of bombings, soldiers, famine, and terror, but also one filled with the joys and simple pleasures of tight-knit communal life, with its ceremonial feasts and ritual processions, wine making and olive oil pressing, set against a lyrically painted scenic backdrop. Just before leaving her little village for a new world in Canada at age 17, Teresa finally discovers the gut-wrenching circumstances of her birth, a secret of her own that she would carry onto the harrowing transatlantic journey, and for decades to come.

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