Victoria is being given Honorary Citizenship by Greece… she is over the moon!
Victoria Hislop, the renowned author of bestsellers including “The Island” and “Those Who Are Loved,” may officially consider herself Greek.
Greece’s President Katerini Sakellaropoulou has signed an honorary naturalization order allowing the 61-year-old novelist to claim Greek citizenship.
Hislop, who has a holiday house in Crete where she spends several months a year, was granted Greek citizenship for promoting modern Greek history and culture, including the history of the tiny island of Spinalonga, off the coast of Crete, the last leper colony in Europe. Spinalonga served as the setting for her 2005 historical novel “The Island.”
The decree was published in the Greek government gazette.
Under Greek law, honorary naturalization may be granted to people “who have provided exceptional services to the country or whose naturalization serves the public interest.”
Those Who Are Loved is set against the backdrop of the German occupation of Greece, the subsequent civil war and a military dictatorship, all of which left deep scars.
Themis is part of a family bitterly divided by politics and, as a young woman, her fury with those who have collaborated with the Nazis, drives her to fight for the communists. She is eventually imprisoned on the notorious islands of exile, Makronisos and Trikeri, and has to make a life or death decision. She is proud of having fought, but for the rest of her life is haunted by some of her actions. Forty years after the end of the civil war, she finally achieves catharsis.
Victoria Hislop sheds light on the complexity of Greece’s traumatic past and weaves it into the dynamic tale of a woman who is both hero and villain, and her lifelong fight for justice.
A few of my favourite (Greek) Things…