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About the Book


It is the night of June 17, 1944, on the island of Elba, and a young girl is locked in a kitchen cabinet, hiding from the war. The liberation has been set in motion. Soon the German occupation will be over and the Elbans will be free. But while history marches on, memory circles back, returning again and again to the experiences that remain unresolved and yet define us.

The young girl who spends the first night of the liberation hiding in a cabinet is Adriana Nardi. Sixty years later she has become Mrs. Rundel, who, as she rides a train through the landscape of suburban New Jersey, won't let herself forget the terror of war. She remembers the sounds of battle. She remembers her childish confusion. And she remembers, as she has many times before, a Senegalese soldier named Amdu, who came to her for refuge.

On the train to New York, Mrs. Rundel's effort to remember is threatened by the physical force of illness. Caught in the perilous divide between life and death, Mrs. Rundel is both a woman struggling to catch her breath and a young girl struggling to survive the violence of the liberation. As Adriana Nardi, she risks her own safety and the safety of her family to help Amdu, a solitary soldier who aspires to be nothing less than a modern-day saint. While Amdu can't stop the war, he can hold Adriana's attention. Together they experience what will take a lifetime to understand: the everlasting innocence of first love.

With the mastery and elegance that have made all of Joanna Scott's novels celebrated literary events, Liberation is a story of war and love and memory's redemptive power.

by Joanna Scott

  • Publication Date: February 25, 2008
  • Paperback: 272 pages
  • Publisher: Back Bay Books
  • ISBN-10: 0316018899
  • ISBN-13: 9780316018890