Books: Passion & Piety

THE NUN OF MONZA by Mario Mazzucchelli. 253 pages. Simon & Schuster, $4.95.

Most nuns choose a religious life because they have a vocation. Not Sister Virginia. Instead of a vocation, she had a widowed father who wanted to get rid of her. At 14, she entered the Convent of Santa Margherita in the north Italian town of Monza, took the veil two years later. Her father, the Lord of Monza, not only managed to save the expense of a dowry but also pocketed the bulk of his daughter's personal fortune and was left free...

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