Candida Martinelli's Italophile Site

Main Page This family-friendly site celebrates Italian culture for the enjoyment of children and adults. Site-Overview


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Eduardo De la Maria



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Theatre in 1860s

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Italian Music



Domenico Modugno

Opera Singers: Caruso, Tetrazzini, Gigli, Patti

Caruso in SF Quake

Eurovision / San Remo Song Festivals


Recent Films

Terence Hill

Francesco Nuti

Anthony LaPaglia

Italian Humor and Toto



Hyphenated Italians

Hyphenated Italians

Elsa Schiaparelli

London's Italians and Barometers

Mulberry Bend, NYC

Old New York

Roaming the World, G. P.

Brazil / Argentina, by R. B.

John, Italian Emigrant, by D. H. Lawrence

Joe Petrosino, NYC Pioneer Policeman

East Haven, Conn, J. M.

Rivesville, West Virginia, R.T.

Tomaso Salvini

Adelaide Ristori

Caruso, Tetrazzini, Patti

Caruso in SF Quake

Giovanni Boldini



Books Set in Italy by Genre


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Audio Books in Italian

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Bestselling Italian



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Italians as Europeans

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Marco Polo's Travels

Petrarch and his Love Sonnets

A Sicilian Romance

Illuminated Manuscripts

The Brownings

Divine Comedy



Marcus Aurelius

Anonymous Andalusian Cookbook


Sicilian Romance

Pompeii Revisited

Linda Proud

Bianca by W. E. Norris

Wallace Breem

Room with a View

Enchanted April



Free PDF Books

Enchanted April

Room with a View

Medieval Cookbooks

Anonymous Andalusian Cookbook

Plutarch's Lives

Agatha Christie's First Poirot Story

Short Classic Mystery Stories

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Ancient Rome

A Sicilian Romance

Italian Renaissance

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Candida's Italophile Links

Italophile Book Reviews

YouTube Channel for Italophiles

Zazzle Italian Art Xmas Cards

Writing Website: Italophile Author of Clean Fiction

Traditional Mystery Set in Italy by Candida

Crime Novel with Italian Policeman by Candida

Two Non-Italy Articles

A non-Italy article by Candida: A book that helped keep WWII soldiers sane and humane

A non-Italy offer:  Nerja, Spain Beachfront Apartment to Rent



Two Hyphenated Italians in a Contemporary Romance/Satire novel (paperback and e-book):  Gina Accornero's quiet life is threatened when the media invade her sleepy seaside town in search of a disgraced TV star, Robert Granieri.  "This romantic spiced with a rich satire of the wired world we live in." (Review)  Click here to go to the book's page.



Two Hyphenated Italians in a Contemporary Romance/Family Life novel (paperback and e-book):  "A Modern Multicultural Fairy Tale: This sweet modern romance is chock full of matchmaking and happy endings for everyone concerned, with the exception of the obligatory ogre, who gets his just desserts while the happy reader develops an inexplicable craving for bagels." (Review)  Click here to go to the book's Amazon page.



A couple's retirement travels begin in Venice, Italy, where things don't go as planned, in this Women's Fiction - Psychological Novel (paperback and e-book). "This charming story is an armchair visit to Venice that gives mature women renewed hope of second chance love and has a surprising twist to the mystery." (Review) Click here to go to the book's page.





Grab a cup and read...


Click on a topic in the columns left and right to visit that page on this site, or click one of the slideshow images to visit that page  



A Gift from Candida

FREE e-book of delightful kitten poems accompanied by charming kitten drawings.  25 poems and 30 images.  30 pages for children.


Click the PDF e-book link to open the book in your browser, to view it, and then download it if you like it.  Or right click on the link and click on "Save Link As" in the box that appears, to download the e-book.  PDF e-books can be read on any e-reader.

PDF E-Book



Lt. Joe Petrosino, Trail-Blazing Fighter of Organized Crime



Hero's Send-Off for a Fallen NYCPD Officer



New York City declared the day Lieutenant Joe Petrosino was buried a holiday, so all those who wanted to pay their respects, could.  On April 12, 1909, over 250,000 people paid their respects to the fallen New York City Police Department Officer, who was killed in the line of duty, and who had an amazing 25 year career with the NYCPD.



They lined the streets from Old St. Patrick's Cathedral to Calvary Cemetery. They watched the procession of hearse, widow, relations, friends, colleagues, Police Units, Fire-Fighters, Italian-American Associations, Civic Groups, school children, and the Police Band playing Verdi's Requiem.  They stood for 5 and 1/2 hours.

They told reporters covering the event of Joe Petrosino's heroism and of how he'd touched their lives.  They stood together to show their disgust for the organized-crime cowards who had taken Joe Petrosino's life at the age of 48, leaving behind a grieving widow and a daughter only a few months old. 


Crime Fighting Career - The Right Stuff of Heroes


Joe Petrosino was born part of that 1% of us who has the rare combination of a great capacity for human empathy, and a capability of using force when necessary, when the other 99% would turn and run for their lives.  To put it bluntly, in these rare people, when faced with aggression, the 'pissed-off' response far out-weighs the 'piss-in-your-pants' response.  His rugby-player physique and strength served him well.



That rare combination is the stuff of heroes. The tough good-guy is the stuff of lore and every action hero story ever told.  But Joe Petrosino was the real thing.  And the people of New York City knew it, and they knew how lucky they were to have him on the streets protecting them.

Joe Petrosino was not only a tough cop, he was also a smart cop.  He recognized that crime-fighting required more than brute force and reacting to crimes committed.  Petrosino pioneered techniques that are considered standard-operating-procedure today in the fight against organized criminal gangs.

  • He set up the first Bomb-Squad in the U.S. to study the bombs used by the gangs to intimidate their extortion victims.  His team learned to traced the components and the bomb makers.

  • He set up the U.S.'s first Organized-Crime-Task-Force called the Italian Squad (later the Italian Legion), to study and infiltrate the gangs.  He had his team chart the organizations and trace all their connections, illegitimate and legitimate.  

  • He set out their strategy of disrupting the gangs' systems from all sides to make their operations unprofitable, relying on intra-agency cooperation, which was very rare in those days.  They worked closely with Customs and Immigration officers, and with the Treasury Department's Secret Service agents.

  • He stressed the need to put away the gang leaders for any crime they could link to them, from murder, to tax evasion, to jay-walking, to illegal immigrant status, all in an effort to disrupt the gang's growth and to promote in-fighting in the illegal organizations, which provided a steady stream of informants.

  • His group set up a vast network of informants, paid and un-paid.  He pioneered witness protection and intelligence-gathering programs to gain inside information into the crime groups. 

  • He stressed the need for infiltration of the organizations to gain first-hand information.  He was famous for having a closet full of disguises, everything from a newly arrived Italian immigrant outfit, to a priest, to a Hasidic Jew.


Martyr to Justice and Civil Society



On March 12, 1909, Joe Petrosino was lured by an informant to an ambush.  He was shot dead in a square in Palermo, Sicily.  

Petrosino was in Sicily on orders from the NYC Police Chief, to uncover information that would allow for the deportation of hundreds of organized crime foot-soldiers from New York City back to Italy.  

He was well on his way to accomplishing his task, which is the direct reason he was killed, as were, later, several of his colleagues who continued the work.  

It was later determined that the NYC Police Chief, through incompetence, put Petrosino in danger by sending him on such an exposed mission, and compounded that danger by detailing it to the press beforehand.


A Moving Tribute


Far and away the most moving tribute to Joe Petrosino is, in my humble opinion, the one on The Officer Down Memorial Page, Inc site.  The reflections left by other officers and admirers show how one man can make a difference, and inspire others, even when his life is cut short by cowards.  I found this simple message left by a fellow officer the most poignant: 

"Rest in peace Brother Joseph, you are a true hero and will never be forgotten."

Amen to that.


Lieutenant Joe Petrosino, NYCPD

Born 1861  -  Died 1909, age 48


Click here to go to my full article on Lieutenant Joe Petrosino



About this Site

This is a hobby-site.  Any money made from links and ads provide funds to cover my computer, Internet, and website hosting and domain name costs.  Anything left over, I spend on pasta! 

I promote some of my books here too, all written with Italophiles in mind, available in paperback and e-book formats from Amazon.  I hope you enjoy them, and if you do, a review would help others find them. 


Candida Martinelli

Established July 2003


Food, Drink, Recipes

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Ricordo di Venezia Postcard Book


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History Comes Alive

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Italian Unification

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Living in Ancient Rome



An Italian in a Crime/Romance novel (paperback and e-book):  An Italian at Europol deals with crime and women,  "...reminded me a lot of the show Criminal Minds", "the focus isn't on the violence but rather on the underlying psychology". (Review)  Click here to go the book's page. 



Short Story Collection with stories about crime, murder and the often difficult male-female relations, a la Daphne du Maurier (paperback and e-book):  "well-crafted" and "unpredictable" (Review).  Click here to go to the book's page.



Traditional Country House Murder Mystery set in Italy (paperback and e-book):  A retired woman visits Italy and gets involved in murder.  "An old-fashioned who done it with plenty of suspicious characters, set in modern day Italy." (Review)  A long, leisurely read. Click here to go to the book's page.