The Pirino has provided a living for the Como family for generations, but this morning Carlo hauls in a very different catch: three large white rocks known as God’s Teeth. The valuable stones, coveted by local ceramic-makers, will allow him to marry his love, Tonia Vacci, a worker in the town’s dismal silk mill.
But the fisherman’s good fortune is resented by estate manager Baldassare Gaetano, greedy both for Tonia and the profit from the stones. Carlo’s discovery unleashes a chain of love and jealousy, courage and betrayal, despair and iron resolve that will define the Como and Vacci families for decades to come.
Tonia’s brother, Ettore, is determined to advance through life on his own merits and bids farewell to Castrubello. With a hot-headed partner, he forms a construction company and heads south to carve The King’s Road through the mountains of Campania. Ettore soon finds himself fighting an impossible deadline and a band of cut-throat brigands led by the legendary Corsicano, determined to halt the intruder so brazenly threatening his mountain lair.
Pulling God’s Teeth is the first volume of “The Last Italian, A Saga in Three Parts”, a gripping epic that begins in 1882 Italy and spans more than sixty years of social and political tumult. Three generations of characters, bound by blood and shared histories, face rapacious landowners, deadly epidemics, unforgiving warfare, dangerous emigration, and Fascist brutality during the turbulent era of the Kingdom of Italy. As the series’ protagonists struggle to balance ambition, love, and loyalty against the pitiless demands of survival, inscrutable Fate forever stands ready to violently intervene.
The three books of the series “The Last Italians” include Pulling God’s Teeth (1882), Fate’s Restless Feet (1911-1913), and Death to the Wolf (1942-1945).