Gianni Celati, Author, Stuart Hood, Translator Serpent's Tail $14.99 (160p) ISBN 978-1-85242-212-7
These four lively novellas by Italian writer Celati (Voices from the Plains) are distinct yet share a common theme: the truth and falseness that are both inherent in our words and thoughts. In the first piece, a man suddenly stops speaking--a behavior that draws strangers to confide their hopes and fears in him. In another selection, a signwriter lovingly observes the effects of varying lights on the via Emilia, a road cutting through Italy's industrialized north. The comic gem of the collection describes a young student's efforts to learn the true meaning of books by becoming a bookseller; unfortunately, he is so unsuccessful he earns the disapprobation of his supervisor, an engineer who tells him that a good salesman must never read books because he will frighten away his customers. Lastly, a respectable businessman tries to escape from his teenage son and his own dismally upright life in search of a tenuous freedom. These philosophical, provocative stories involve almost visionary quests to find truth and freedom, yet the overall tone is light, subtly whimsical, and often beautifully poetic in its descriptions of the light and shadow around us and within us. (Sept.)
Reviewed on: 06/29/1992
Release date: 07/01/1992
Genre: Fiction
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