Under the Rose
Under the Rose
An explosive true story of passion and transgression rendered in exquisite prose.
Publication Date: 04-01-2001
Flavia Alaya's passionate 20-year affair with a Catholic priest violated the strictest taboos of society, the Church, and her Italian American family. The relationship set Alaya free to become a scholar, political activist, and mother of their three children as Father Harry Browne rose to prominence in community organizing and anti-Vietnam protests. This is a story of a life lived to the fullest.
"Flavia Alaya has written a memoir with a rare elegiac style. She works the supreme magic of combining a deeply personal story whilst narrating a fascinating history of a moribund Church. Deeply spiritual with love and tragedy, but finally, a woman triumphant." —Malachy McCourt, author of A Monk Swimming: A Memoir
"Here is a timeless passion, recalled with a historian's precision. But it is also a modern political document. Because these lovers took the definitions with which their times tried to imprison them—definitions of woman, of priest, of powerlessness—and transformed them, first in their own lives, and then out in the world." —Nuala O'Faolain, author of Are You Somebody?: The Accidental Memoir of a Dublin Woman
"Flavia Alaya's richly textured story kept me up half the night, riveted by its dauntless passion and fierce insight. For those of us who are Italian Americans and sometime Catholics, Alaya's tale will have special power in its unraveling of mysteries and sanctities that shaped our lives. But her headlong rush toward remembrance of things past will have extraordinary resonance, too, for all who have lived, loved, lost—and won." —Sandra M. Gilbert, author of Ghost Volcano
"Flavia Alaya writes beautifully. She brings moments of intense feeling vividly to life. And without belaboring it, she moves beyond a patriarchal morality that cast her as a mala femina into a humane and loving view of life." —Marilyn French, author of The Women's Room