Sunday, November 05, 2006

Favorite Italian novels (take one)

Ciao a tutti!
I will provide more details in later posts but first just a list of some of the noteworthy Italian novels I have read in recent years:
1. "Io Non Ho Paura" by the previously-mentioned Niccolo Ammaniti; such a powerful book I was left speechless and in a tailspin when I finished reading it two years ago exactly. They made a film based on the book.
2. "Il Giorno Della Civetta," by Leonardo Sciascia; there's a reason they call him a master and this is it.
3. "A Ciascuno Il Suo," by Sciascia; see above post.
4. "Il Gattopardo," by Tomasi Di Lampedusa; not an easy read but so satisfying!
5. The Ignazio Silone trilogy: "Vino E Pane"; "Fontamara"; and "Il Seme Sotto La Neve." The first two are hard to put down; I keep a list of the books I read and I wrote the word "twice" next to both books, and I vaguely remember just starting from the beginning once I had finished them. Can't say the same about the third, which I found difficult. That's a reflection on me, not the quality of the book.
6. "Cronache Di Poveri Amanti," by Vasco Pratolini
7. "Le Ragazze di San Frediano," also by Pratolini; for anyone who has ever spent time in San Frediano in Florence, it's a must-read.
8. "Il Quartiere," same author, same comment.
9. "Fango," by Niccolo Ammaniti
10. "Ti Prendo e Ti Porto Via," also by Ammaniti. Similar formula to "Io Non Ho Paura," in the sense that parts of the book literally stun you. When was the last time a book stunned you? If you read Italian, pick this book up. You will be sucked in quickly, and then when everything comes crashing down, you will be in fetal position.

There you have ten Italian novels I heartily recommend. Godi!

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