August 1944, Le Nuove Prigioni (New Jale) in Turin. A young nun takes the baby of a prisoner in transit through Birkenau, puts him to sleep with a cloth soaked in wine and slips him into the dirty laundry trolley. You know, the laundry is not the business of the Germans, and most of the time the trolleys go in and out of the walls without being searched. More than fifty years later Aila, who never knew of that brother's existence, finds herself reconstructing his few traces. Little by little the story comes together, despite the numerous misdirections of history: the bombings on the central districts of the city, the Nazi occupation, the persecutions, the transfer to the countryside, the post-war accidents. The life of that child who became a man becomes a priority for Aila it seems unattainable, kept in the memory of the woman who saved him and the one who welcomed him and loved him stormily. Emma, Teresa and Elda, Aila's mother, are women who are composed in search of a past that culminates in a painful and necessary revelation.
Martina Merletti draws unforgettable, silent and stubborn female figures, and by intertwining documents and fiction she reveals an extraordinary compositional talent. In this delicate and bitter book, with a certainty and competence more unique than rare in a debut novel, he gives a new history to our twentieth century.