Monday, May 8, 2017

Beneath a Scarlet Sky by Mark T. Sullivan

 Expected publication: May 1st 2017 by Lake Union Publishing
Paperback, 524 pages

.Based on the true story of a forgotten hero, Beneath a Scarlet Sky is the triumphant, epic tale of one young man’s incredible courage and resilience during one of history’s darkest hours.

Pino Lella wants nothing to do with the war or the Nazis. He’s a normal Italian teenager—obsessed with music, food, and girls—but his days of innocence are numbered. When his family home in Milan is destroyed by Allied bombs, Pino joins an underground railroad helping Jews escape over the Alps, and falls for Anna, a beautiful widow six years his senior.

In an attempt to protect him, Pino’s parents force him to enlist as a German soldier—a move they think will keep him out of combat. But after Pino is injured, he is recruited at the tender age of eighteen to become the personal driver for Adolf Hitler’s left hand in Italy, General Hans Leyers, one of the Third Reich’s most mysterious and powerful commanders.

Now, with the opportunity to spy for the Allies inside the German High Command, Pino endures the horrors of the war and the Nazi occupation by fighting in secret, his courage bolstered by his love for Anna and for the life he dreams they will one day share.

Fans of All the Light We Cannot SeeThe Nightingale, and Unbroken will enjoy this riveting saga of history, suspense, and love.

Pino Lella: A Forgotten Hero of World War II

At the age of 17, Giuseppe “Pino” Lella helped Jews escape the Nazis in northern Italy, guiding them from a Catholic boys school north of Lake Como, up and over the Alps, and into neutral Switzerland. The following summer, he became a spy inside the German High Command, risking everything to serve the Italian Resistance and suffering mightily for it long after the war ended. BENEATH A SCARLET SKY is the untold story of the most inspiring and heartbreaking years of Pino Lella’s life.

My Thoughts…

I am a WWII fan.   There are not many books about WWII or that era that I do not want to read.   Beneath a Scarlet Sky is one of my top 5 favorites.  

I was so invested in Pino and his travels during WWII and all that he was doing to help the Jews.    He was young, yet he did so much to fight against the Germans and help innocent people stay alive.     There were times that he was pushed to do things against his conscience.    These were the times that I really admired Pino.    Working for the Nazi’s had to be the scariest, most intimidating, heroic act that Pino ever did.    

The fact that this is based on true story only enhanced the book.     The heroes of WWII are dying fast and their lives need to be celebrated with the stories they can share.     I am so very proud of the veterans of this era and all that they gave up for their countries.    

Thank you Claire McLaughlin at Little Bird Publicity for a copy of the book for a honest review.  

Book Links

Mark Sullivan is the acclaimed author of eighteen novels, including the #1 New York Times bestselling Private series, which he writes with James Patterson. Mark has received numerous awards for his writing, including the WHSmith Fresh Talent Award, and his works have been named a New York Times Notable Book and a Los Angeles Times Best Book of the Year. He grew up in Medfield, Massachusetts, and graduated from Hamilton College with a B.A. in English before working as a Peace Corps volunteer in Niger, West Africa. Upon his return to the United States, he earned a graduate degree from the Medill School of Journalism at Northwestern University and began a career in investigative journalism. An avid skier and adventurer, he lives with his wife in Bozeman, Montana, where he remains grateful for the miracle of every moment.


  1. Hi Charlotte - I have just finished reading this amazing book, packed with amazing people, sadness, joy and bravery.

  2. I also loved this book. It reminded me of “Unbroken.” Do you see a movie in the offing?

    1. I have not seen the movie but I will have to check it out.