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Room to Read publishes three new graphic novels for girls in Southern Italy

December 12, 2023

Girls' Education Life Skills Book Publishing Italy

Room to Read is thrilled to share that we recently published three new graphic novels in Southern Italy, part of our larger graphic and photo book collection created to support life skills education for adolescent girls in Naples and Palermo. Developed in partnership with Milan-based publisher Editrice il Castoro, Italy’s first independent children’s book publisher, along with a talented and renowned team of local writers, illustrators and designers, the books feature true stories of young women in Southern Italy as they use essential life skills — like self-confidence, perseverance, critical thinking and communicating assertively — to overcome everyday challenges and achieve their goals. 
 
The three most recent titles, “Il Coraggio di Essere Felici: Storia di Nadia e Lucia” (“The Courage to be Happy: The Story of Nadia and Lucia”), created by Assia Petricelli and Ornella Greco,  “Le Vele: Storia di Maddalena” (“The Sails: The Story of Maddalena”), created by Assia Petricelli and Arianna Melone, and “La Rosa dei Venti: Storia di Martina” (“The Wind Rose: The Story of Martina”), created by Carmen Guasco and Alessia De Sio, join the first two books in Room to Read's Italian collection — one graphic novel, “Vista della Montagna” (“View of the Mountain”) and one photo novel, “Il Filo che ci Unisce” (“The Thread that Unites Us”) — which were published in 2022 and distributed to select schools in Southern Italy in 2023.
 

Excerpt from “Il Coraggio di Essere Felici: Storia di Nadia e Lucia,” (“The Courage to be Happy: The Story of Nadia and Lucia,”) created by Assia Petricelli and Ornella Greco. In the story, Nadia and Lucia start a social enterprise, employing young men in a juvenile prison. They work together to provide employment opportunities and training.

 


Excerpt from “Le Vele: Storia di Maddalena” (“The Sails: The Story of Maddalena”), created by Assia Petricelli and Arianna Melone. The novel tells the story of Maddalena, who pursues her dream of acting and opens a neighborhood acting studio for children in her community.

 


Excerpt from “La Rosa dei Venti: Storia di Martina” (“The Wind Rose: The Story of Martina”), created by Carmen Guasco and Alessia De Sio. The novel tells the story of Martina, who brings social innovation and digital fabrication to schools in Sicily.

 


A total of 40,000 copies of the books have been printed and distributed to schools across Naples and Palermo. The three titles will also be combined into one very special edition by Editrice il Castoro and be available for commercial sale throughout Italy in March 2024. 
 

 

Room to Read in Southern Italy

Room to Read implemented our first ever Girls’ Education Program in Naples and Palermo, Italy, in 2022, benefiting girls aged 14–19 with materials focused on essential life skills, in addition to digital literacy, financial literacy and entrepreneurship. A Room to Read feasibility study revealed that graphic novels are an extremely popular form of media in Italy — especially among adolescent girls and young women. 
 
In addition to graphic novels, Room to Read is collaborating with local partners to create and implement a school-based curriculum for girls in vocational programs in Naples and Palermo. The program will consist of lessons focused on digital literacy, financial literacy and entrepreneurship.  

 

Learn more about Room to Read's Girls' Education Program