Malafrena
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Malafrena

by Ursula K. Le Guin
Release date: 1979
Type: speculative fiction
Genres: fantasy, mainstream

When the fiery, idealistic Itale Sorde, son and heir to an estate owner in the beautiful Malafrena valley, is sent away to school, he quickly falls under the sway of an underground revolutionary movement sworn to destroy Austria's domination of Orsinia. Itale is prepared to die for his country's independence and refuses to return home to the complacent life of a wealthy landowner. He forsakes Malafrena for Krasnoy, a city in ferment.

Here he embarks on a new, exciting life, leaerning the lessons of love from a beautiful baroness and lessons in life from a dazzling group of intelligentsia and dissidents. But Itale pays a bitter price for his convictions: having already given up the secure life of Malafrena, the respect of his father, and perhaps the love of his childhood sweetheart, he is jailed by the Austrian secret police. Though he is brutalized in prison, Itale's spirit and faith in his cause remain unshaken. And when the Baroness arranges his freedom, Itale finally returns to Malafrena to fight for his shining destiny.

(updated 2018-01-06)

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