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Novel Examines One Man’s Life After War

Levittown takes center stage in this tribute to American veterans

In an uncanny parallel of one man’s life after returning home from World War II and the state of a nation in the latter half of a century, William Panzarella brings Levittown to life in his fourth novel, American Horse. The characters are genuine with a certain familiarity, especially to Levittown.

“I always wanted to write a ground-level view of the ‘Greatest Generation’, but did not want to just write a history book. In American Horse, I am able to take the reader on a personal journey through the ’40s to early ’80s, as seen through the eyes of the main character, Frank Keller.”

He explained to the Tribune that he used Levittown in American Horse because of its historical significance as being one of the first suburbs designed almost specifically for World War II veterans. In the story, Keller returns home from Europe and, like many, is ready to start his own family. He and his wife move to Levittown in 1947 and he soon opens a hardware store, becoming highly successful.

“More than ever, we, as a nation, are distancing ourselves from our history and forgetting our past,” Panzarella told the Tribune. “It is imperative that we understand the past and also how it relates to what is going on in the country and the world today.” He said, “American Horse is not just a book about the greatest generation; in the end, it is a story of redemption.”

Panzarella said, “What I really enjoy about American Horse is that it is a story that most anyone can relate to in one way or another. Anyone who served in World War II or had a father or grandfather who served will relate to it. Anyone who lived through the turmoil of the late sixties and early seventies, or served, or had a loved one who served in Vietnam will relate to it. Anyone who has lost a family member or has been estranged from their family will relate to it. Anyone who has gone through the tribulations of alcoholism will relate to it.”

Panzarella resides in Levittown. He is currently working on another novel, which he hopes to have published in early 2013.

“Because of all the research I had to do to make sure I paid attention to historical details, it took me about a year to write American Horse,” Panzarella said. It took another seven months for the editing and publishing to be completed.

Panzarella’s others books include Far Away From Here, The Haunting of Autumn, and The Fate of Man. He has also published a book of poetry, Writings From The Void.

American Horse is available for purchase at,, and It is available in print and e-reader.