Juliet Grames Reads from The Seven or Eight Deaths of Stella Fortuna (Ecco, 2019)

Juliet Grames’s novel tells the story of Stella Fortuna—beautiful and smart, insolent and cold—who is considered an oddity in her Calabrian village. Stella uses her peculiar toughness to protect her baby sister Tina from life’s harshest realities. When the family emigrates to Connecticut on the cusp of World War II, Stella and Tina come of age together in a hostile new environment with strict expectations for each of them. Stella learns that her survival is worthless without the one thing her family will deny her at any cost: her independence.

“Juliet Grames has written a magnificent debut, creating a deeply felt, richly imagined world based upon her family history. The dark beauty of Calabria and the promise of America sets the stage for Stella’s volatile life. … Moody, original and profound.”

—Adriana Trigiani, best-selling author of Tony’s Wife

Discussion led by Helene Stapinski, author of Murder in Matera: A True Story of Passion, Family and Forgiveness in Southern Italy​