Publication Date: May 2016
English: 312 pages
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“We are only what we remember to be.” Within these words, which the protagonist Fiorina addresses to her interviewer-inquisitor-interlocutor – the narrator-author – towards the end of the novel, is enclosed the deep meaning of Pietro Vitelli’s fictional account. But very little else in the work’s structure is rendered so linearly. Rather, from the outset, the work is complex, layered and even proudly artistically constructed… Its compositional process is not dissimilar from that of the Italian literary tradition, ranging from Petrarca to Verga, all the way to the late-twentieth century writers. Often, that which is closest can only be recounted once it has gotten further away. Thus, Vitelli places his characters across the Atlantic Ocean in order to recreate his native land and have them speak his native tongue [translated into English], which, over the decades, has become the language of life… The events depicted, Fiorina’s story – her personal and family episodes, her passion, though unusual, and even extreme in its respectful and timid expression – remains lively, intense, and certainly beyond the reader’s expectation. Finally, the novel also tells the author’s story. His search for himself is woven through his narration of another person’s story, which becomes his own only when meaning merges with sound.