"A family deserves to have its history recorded."

In this affecting memoir, Delfucho traces the storied history of his “proud, successful Italian-American family.” The Manoneros clan is a large, close-knit immigrant unit with long-held traditions and customs. Between the years of 1950 and 1970, Delfucho follows his early years and the key events that shape his and everyone else’s lives. The recollections are primarily culled from what others regale him with and some from what he remembers himself. Details are often disputed, and the sometimes heated discussions that arise are what make Delfucho’s memoir so engaging. He recounts growing up in the shadow of his baseball-loving father’s propensity for violence, the resolute care and protection of his loving mother, the abuses toward his sister, and his own affliction and recovery with polio. There are moments of happiness and tragedy, emerging sexuality, and a fond remembrance of boyhood love.

Through all this, Delfucho shares mouthwatering Italian recipes passed down through generations of the Manoneros. Recipes of main dishes, like Pollo Nella Vaschetta, or desserts, like Torta di Ricotta Arancione, are woven into the narrative, tying in with specific memories. Some recipes were created or written by hand from which Delfucho cherishes those moments and relationships with loved ones. This is what makes his memoir so touching. And it speaks to our need to retain tangible memories. One can appreciate the dying practice of handwritten notes and letters in a digital age. Set against the backdrop of significant events during two iconic decades, Delfucho weaves together a memoir that celebrates family and pays homage to “priceless and irreplaceable” blood lineage. We’re called upon to treasure our own family bonds as Delfucho allows us a glimpse into his family’s survival and the search for the American dream in this delectable read.

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