Jonathan Keates

Misfortune Favours the Brave

A Bold and Dangerous Family: The Rossellis and the Fight Against Mussolini


Chatto & Windus 420pp £20 order from our bookshop

‘What a miserable age! Even the crimes aren’t worthy of admiration!’ cried the composer Giuseppe Verdi, contemplating his own era. The trouble with the past is that it continually confronts us with our own inadequacy, giving us the feeling that the gods and giants have long ago departed the earth and all reserves of principle, integrity and courage have run dry, leaving only a stale trickle of self-serving compromise. Similarly, Caroline Moorehead’s latest book, about a family made up of fearless, high-minded individuals prepared to defy dictators and suffer for their convictions, offers the reader a sobering experience.

Sign Up to our newsletter

Receive free articles, highlights from the archive, news, details of prizes, and much more.

Follow Literary Review on Twitter

  • Last Tweets

    • 'Full of invention which, at its most pedestrian, is eminently Victorian, and at its most unrestrained wildly imagi… ,
    • 'What in other hands could have been a dry, pedantic account of Christianity’s birth and evolution becomes in Holla… ,
    • RT : One of my favourite literary magazines is celebrating 40 years this year. Here is the September edition of… ,
    • 'Now that the Thames is too fast-flowing to freeze, its spirit’s devotees ... have found other climes for their pri… ,
    • 'Bythell glowers past his till at a world in slow free fall.' on the travails of a second-hand book… ,
    • 'It is a scent of animal wrath, of instinctive need, of brutal life which affects the cultured nostrils of our civi… ,
    • 'The day produced countless stories of chance, of people taking one route or another without realising that the dec… ,