No Pictures in My Grave: A Spiritual Journey in Sicily

Susan Caperna Lloyd, Author Mercury House $12.95 (208p) ISBN 978-1-56279-023-3
Part travelogue, part personal quest and part exploration of women's roles in Sicily, Lloyd's story is intriguing but thin. A documentary filmmaker, Lloyd goes to Italy to find her roots, winding up in Sicily, where she is welcomed by the townspeople of Trapani. Lloyd observes that the Easter Week procession focuses not on Jesus but on the ``powerful though sorrowful Madonna.'' Seeing hints of her grandmother in that portrayal, she investigates the ``long-suffering nature of Italian women's lives.'' Musing on history and mythology, she finds links between that Madonna and Sicily's ancient fertility goddess, Demeter. Though her status as an americana brings her in contact with the Trapani men, she meets the women slowly, at a grandmother's traditional dinner and at a slumber party hosted by a young bride-to-be. She learns more from Clara, an intellectual and restaurateur, and from the women of San Biago, who organize their own Easter tradition. Back in Trapani, Lloyd joins the male-dominated procession, feeling that through her the Goddess ``had rejoined the world of men.'' Though Lloyd writes lucidly, her story includes too little self-revelation for the reader to join her epiphany. Photos not seen by PW. (Apr.)
Reviewed on: 01/01/1992
Release date: 01/01/1992
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