Next week, one of Delaware's native sons, now a critically acclaimed book author, will return home for a discussion of his latest novel at the Hockessin Book Shelf.
Born and raised in Wilmington, Christopher Castellani's books regularly explore themes of family and love, filtered through the Italian upbringing he encountered as the son of Italian immigrants.
In his latest book, "All This Talk of Love!," Castellani takes a modern Italian-American family on a visit to their ancestral village. It's been 50 years since Antonio Grasso married Maddelena Piccinelli and brought her to America. It was the last time she saw her parents, sisters and brothers and everything she loved in the village of Santa Cecilia, Italy. Maddelena has no desire to open old wounds but her first-born is anxious to know more than just the lore of the Old Country. The trip to Italy threatens to tear the family apart until it becomes apparent that it's a necessary journey.
Unlike other HBS author events, Castellani's visit marks the first "Evening with the Author" that will take place in the newly renovated storefront. Owner Rebecca Dowling, always excited to bring writers to town for intimate discussions with voracious readers is just as excited for people to see the updates to the store.
"We refinished the floors and put the center section of shelves up on platforms," Dowling said. "Now, we can move them out of the center, allowing us to hold our events here."
Advance registration is required but tickets can be bought at the door.