Thanks to a note from Susan Walker, a fellow Antiquity resident, Around Davidson learned of Gilda’s many talents, not the least of which is her newly published memoir, “My Father’s Daughter: From Rome to Sicily,” published by Divine Phoenix in conjunction with Pegasus Books. Gilda’s story was a Novello Literary Award Finalist and for the first 5 weeks after its release in December of 2014, it was on Amazon’s No. 1 Hot Best Releases for Sicily Tour Guides.
Review -Dannye Romine Powell, Reading Matters
Gilda Morina Syverson makes me wish I were Italian.
Oh, those ancient Sicilian villages.
Oh, those fragrant family feasts.
Oh, the way Italians greet their long-lost relatives from the U.S.
Syverson tells a good story – the joy of watching her parents as they visit the old villages – and she may be one of the most obsessively self-reflective writers I’ve ever read.
No surprise that Syverson and her dad come to know each other in a new and more loving way.
Not only are the hills in the villages steep, so is Syverson’s learning curve: “Perhaps by accepting all of who my father is, I can forgive him for not being what I thought he should have been, and in this process, accept the human frailties of my mother and myself.”
I applaud Syverson for opening her heart wide to the reader and saying, Entrate! Entrate!
Introduction at Southern Recitations
Bryce Emley, Raleigh Review
When authors write about place, the implication is usually that they’re writing about their relation to the world they inhabit, how their surrounding cities and environments relate to them. You could say much of Gilda Morina Syverson’s work is about place, but in a shifted vein: My Father’s Daughter, From Rome to Sicily is a rumination on how worlds Syverson has inhabited relate her, not just to her.
To read this book is to know that the places we’ve lived, the places we’ve known, the places and people we come from stick with us in ways we don’t always understand. Her work is the stuff of houses and homes and the fixtures they contain, a mapping of experience and how we share it, a way of, as the Syverson herself has put it in her poetry, “seeking our own kind” from wherever we happen to be.
—Bryce Emley, Raleigh Review