The Hudson Library & Historical Society will host a live virtual streaming event with bestselling author and historian, Tilar Mazzeo who will discuss her book, Sisters in Resistance: How a German Spy, a Banker’s Wife, and Mussolini’s Daughter Outwitted the Nazis. The book details how three women risked their lives to ensure that the World War II-era secret diaries of Italian Foreign Minister, Galeazzo Ciano, made it into the hands of the Allies. Mazzeo gives readers a riveting look into this little-known moment in history and shows how, without these women’s involvement, certain convictions at Nuremberg would never have been possible.
In 1944, Benito Mussolini's daughter, Edda, gave an ultimatum to Hitler and her father. Either release her husband, Galeazzo Ciano, from prison, or risk her leaking his journals to the press. Fearing the exposure of Nazi lies and secrets, Hitler and Mussolini enlisted the help of German spy, Hilde Beetz, who was tasked with seducing Ciano to determine the location of the diaries. In a twist of fate, Beetz became a double agent and worked alongside Edda to protect the diaries with the intent to publish them. With the help of American spy Frances De Chollet, Edda and Beetz succeeded in preserving one of the most important documents of WWII.
Dr. Mazzeo is Professeure Associée at the University of Montreal and the former Clara C. Piper Associate Professor of English at Colby College. She is the author of numerous works of narrative nonfiction, including The Widow Clicquot: The Story of a Champagne Empire and the Woman Who Ruled It and Irena’s Children. Her books have been New York Times, San Francisco Chronicle, and Los Angeles Times bestsellers. Sisters in Resistance recently won an award from the Canada Council for the Arts.
Copies of Sisters in Resistance will be available for purchase courtesy of the Learned Owl Book Shop. Registration for this program is required and a valid email address is required at the time of registration. Participants will receive an email invitation to attend the program, hosted on Zoom, a day before the program begins.