Gabriella spent a magical childhood in Sicily, on the Ionian Sea, at the foot of Mt. Etna. The island’s chronicles and legends, and the ever-present traces of its earlier inhabitants and conquerors--Greeks, Romans, Arabs, Normans--nurtured her imagination, and awoke her passion for story-telling.
Love for history and literature, particularly women’s literature, has driven Gabriella’s academic career. At Gonzaga Gabriella has designed and taught courses in Italian Women Literature, and Italian Historical Fiction. In 1999 she co-edited Gendering Italian Fiction: Feminist Revisions of Italian Fiction (Farleigh Dickinson University Press, 1999), the first critical collection of essays on Italian women’s historical fiction. She has published an historical novel, The Words of Bernfrieda: A Chronicle of Hauteville (EWU Press,1999), which employs contemporary accounts of the 11th century Norman conquest of Southern Italy to write a different chronicle, from a woman’s perspective. Her novel was mentioned by George Garrett in the “Year in Fiction” of the 1999 Yearbook of the Dictionary of Literary Biography. It was later translated into Italian and published by Sellerio Editore in 2001. During that same summer the novel was serialized over several weeks in the “Giornale di Sicilia”. Gabriella is currently working on a series of short stories.
From 2002-2005, she served on the National Screening Committee for the U.S. Student Fulbright Program for American graduate students.
During her years at Gonzaga Gabriella has served as Chair of Modern Languages, director of Italian Studies; has been regent, faculty senator, and has served on the Rank and Tenure Committee, Academic Freedom and several other University committees.
Le parole di Bernfrieda. Gabriella Brooke. Sellerio Editore, April 2001. Italian translation by the author of The Words of Bernfrieda by Gabriella Brooke. EWU Press, 1999
The Words of Bernfrieda EWU Press, 1999. A historical novel set in Normandy and Southern Italy in 1063 at the time of the Norman conquest.
Gendering Italian Fiction: Feminist Revisions of Italian History. Associated University Presses, 1999 (Fairleigh Dickinson). A collection of essays on the historical novel written by women. Coedited with Maria Marotti.