GET VISIBLE! Advertise Here. Find Out More


A New Novel Of
Life With Mario In Rome

from Derek Mannering


When in Rome
A novel by
Nicky Pellegrino

Just over a year ago I was contacted by Nicky Pellegrino, a British-born author and journalist who now lives in Auckland, New Zealand. Nicky’s books are all set in Italy, the perfect backdrop for stories that center around love, family and delicious food. At the time she had just started work on her sixth novel, “When in Rome”, the story of a young woman who finds romance while working at the Villa Badoglio in 1957. As Nicky explained, “My main character is a fictional member of the Lanza household in Rome and the novel is really the story of how her life changed as a result of working there.”

I thought then as I do now that it was a fascinating concept and it was clear from our correspondence that Nicky’s research into Lanza’s life and times was exemplary. Her reference material included several Lanza biographies, Mark Kidel’s documentary “Singing to the Gods,” Mario’s movies, in particular “Seven Hills of Rome” which features in her story, and of course listening to the great Lanza recordings. Nicky was especially interested in contacting Ellisa and the two eventually spoke at length about Mario’s final years in Europe.

The book has now been published and is available through

I have yet to read “When in Rome” but I have no doubt that Nicky has a fine job in capturing a sense of what life must have been like in the Eternal City in the 1950s. All but two of the book’s chapter titles are drawn from Mario Lanza recordings (e.g. Golden Days, My Destiny, Be My Love, Come Dance With Me, etc.) so Mario’s larger-than-life influence is very much a part of the story. Most touching of all, Nicky dedicates the book to “Lanza fans around the world and to anyone who feels a shiver down the spine at the sound of his voice.”

A book like this, coming as it does with the release of Joseph Calleja’s stunning new Lanza tribute CD, “Be My Love,” serves to remind us all of the enduring legacy of music’s greatest romantic tenor.




Donate to
Support Free And Honest
Journalism At
Subscribe To RenseRadio!
Enormous Online Archives,
MP3s, Streaming Audio Files, 
Highest Quality Live Programs