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The Penguin Book of Italian Short Stories

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'Rich. . . eclectic. . . a feast' Telegraph This landmark collection brings together forty writers that reflect over a hundred years of Italy's vibrant and diverse short story tradition, from the birth of the modern nation to the end of the twentieth century. Poets, journalists, visual artists, musicians, editors, critics, teachers, scientists, politicians, translators: the 'Rich. . . eclectic. . . a feast' Telegraph This landmark collection brings together forty writers that reflect over a hundred years of Italy's vibrant and diverse short story tradition, from the birth of the modern nation to the end of the twentieth century. Poets, journalists, visual artists, musicians, editors, critics, teachers, scientists, politicians, translators: the writers that inhabit these pages represent a dynamic cross section of Italian society, their powerful voices resonating through regional landscapes, private passions and dramatic political events. This wide-ranging selection curated by Jhumpa Lahiri includes well known authors such as Italo Calvino, Elsa Morante and Luigi Pirandello alongside many captivating new discoveries. More than a third of the stories featured in this volume have been translated into English for the first time, several of them by Lahiri herself.


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'Rich. . . eclectic. . . a feast' Telegraph This landmark collection brings together forty writers that reflect over a hundred years of Italy's vibrant and diverse short story tradition, from the birth of the modern nation to the end of the twentieth century. Poets, journalists, visual artists, musicians, editors, critics, teachers, scientists, politicians, translators: the 'Rich. . . eclectic. . . a feast' Telegraph This landmark collection brings together forty writers that reflect over a hundred years of Italy's vibrant and diverse short story tradition, from the birth of the modern nation to the end of the twentieth century. Poets, journalists, visual artists, musicians, editors, critics, teachers, scientists, politicians, translators: the writers that inhabit these pages represent a dynamic cross section of Italian society, their powerful voices resonating through regional landscapes, private passions and dramatic political events. This wide-ranging selection curated by Jhumpa Lahiri includes well known authors such as Italo Calvino, Elsa Morante and Luigi Pirandello alongside many captivating new discoveries. More than a third of the stories featured in this volume have been translated into English for the first time, several of them by Lahiri herself.

30 review for The Penguin Book of Italian Short Stories

  1. 4 out of 5

    Ines

    SO BEAUTIFUL!!!!! I say immediately there is nothing so different than the anthology books we have in our italian high schools ( in italian language only) or the texts that in the university courses for the additional exams of Literature ( in our old Degree ) can be found, we Italians are used to see collections like this. I had already read more than half of the stories you can find here, but was a real joy the same... i reread and relived the past days of my adolescence and the first years of SO BEAUTIFUL!!!!! I say immediately there is nothing so different than the anthology books we have in our italian high schools ( in italian language only) or the texts that in the university courses for the additional exams of Literature ( in our old Degree ) can be found, we Italians are used to see collections like this. I had already read more than half of the stories you can find here, but was a real joy the same... i reread and relived the past days of my adolescence and the first years of University., when I studied many of these authors: Tomasi di Lampedusa, Svevo, Pirandello, Morante, Ginzburg, Deledda e Buzzati. I discovered unknown authors for me as Silvio D'arzo or Giovanni Arpino. We Italians, who love to feel sorry for ourselves and forget the greatness of our people and the unique and unrepeatable brilliance of some of our brothers and sons, have the unique gift of being able to enjoy such writers of the 20th century. I, still today, i will never stop thanking some teachers of my high school, the passion for Italian Literature and the the deep love for reading, has blossomed only thanks to them. This is a volume that I absolutely recommend for those who want to get closer to Italy and its Literature, without forgetting that the two pivotal works of Italian knowledge are due to Dante Alighieri with the "Divine comedy" and to Alessandro Manzoni with the "Betrothed". Post scriptum: jhumpa, I write it here, maybe who knows you will read this review, the only passage that really stood out in this volume is found in your preface, I don’t understand why you wrote that kind of cosmic untruth in there , It is a sign ( for me) that you still do not know Italy well, claiming that there is a revival of neo-fascist parties. The" Lombardy League" is not a neo-fascist party, which your radical Italian chic left friends have made you believe. If italian people decides to vote through democratic forms one party instead of another, one must always have respect for these new choices..... The problem of the Italian people in 2019, is that they felt teased by all the left wing, enslaved to Europe. The problem of populism arose only because the Europe of individual states and for the well-being of their citizens does not give a damn at all!!!!, except in respect of European economic parameters.... The people understood that very well. Crushed by these migratory waves that then, the individual European states at the end, try to block in the port of first arrival, that are Italian moslty! and so refusing or sending back here hundreds of immigrants, of which very purely economic, so to be sent back due to european immigratory parameters... How did you think the Italian people could react? People crushed at 60% of annual taxes and with an average net income of 1400 Euro per month! It’s okay to be a good-hearted, but with a 360°-light vision dear jhumpa! Just to clarify, i do not love Salvini, and i did not vote him but i try to understand without prejudices why the left has been destoyed in Italy, and with this horror condition in the Government, they (Salvini and Co.) will arise even more as soon new election will be possible. Do not tell us about Xenophoby please, and there is no violence against immigrants!!! i have no idea where you found out these news!! maybe it is the opposite, about many violences and every day offences against italian people and our police. just read newspapers ( maybe not only La Repubblica and Corriere della sera 😉😉) With love, respect and no offence Ines BELLISSIMO!!!!! lo dico subito non vi è nulla di così diverso rispetto ai libri di Antologia delle scuole superiori o ai testi che nei corsi per gli esami supplementari di Lettere ( Laurea vecchio ordinamento) si potevano trovare, noi italiani diciamolo subito, siamo abituati a vedere raccolte del genere. Avevo già letto piu' della metà dei racconti che potete trovare qui, però che gioia lo stesso... rileggere e rivivere i giorni ormai passati della mia adolescenza e dei primi anni di Università., quando studiavo molti di questi autori: Tomasi di Lampedusa,Svevo,Pirandello,Morante, Ginzburg, Deledda e Buzzati. Scoprire autori sconosciuti per me come Silvio D'arzo o Giovanni Arpino. Noi italiani, che amiamo molto piangerci addosso e dimenticare la grandezza del nostro popolo e la genialità unica e irripetibile di alcuni nostri fratelli e figli, abbiamo il dono unico di poter godere di tali scrittori del '900. Ancora oggi, non finirò mai di ringraziare alcuni insegnanti del mio Liceo, la passione per la Letteratura italiana e l'amore sviscerato per la lettura, è sbocciato solo unicamente grazie a loro. Questo è un volume che assolutamente consiglio per chi vuole avvicinarsi all'Italia e alla sua Letteratura, senza però dimenticarsi che le due opere cardine della conoscenza italiana lo si deve a Dante Alighieri con la "divina commedia" e ad Alessandro Manzoni con i "Promessi sposi". Post scriptum: Jhumpa, te lo scrivo qui, magari chissà leggerai questa recensione, unico passaggio che veramente stonava in questo volume lo si trova nella prefazione, non capisco perchè scrivere una "falsità" cosmica cosi, senza riferimenti precisi e verificabili come hai omesso, indi segno di non conoscere ancora bene l'Italia, sostenendo che vi sia una rinascita di partiti neofascisti. La lega lombarda non è una partito neofascista, checchè i tuoi amici radical chic italiani ti abbiamo fatto credere. Se una popolo decide di votare tramite forme democratiche un determinato partito invece di un altro, bisogna sempre avere rispetto di queste nuove scelte........il problema del popolo italiano nel 2019, è che si è sentito preso in giro " o per il culo cosi capiamo meglio" da tutta quell'ala di sinistra, asservita all' Europa. Il problema del Populismo, è nato unicamente perchè all' Europa dei singoli stati e del benessere dei loro cittadini non frega assolutamente nulla, se non nel rispetto dei parametri economici europei.... questo il popolo l'ha capito molto bene. Timoroso da queste ondate migratorie che poi, i singoli stati europei, cercano di riffa o di raffa di bloccare nel porto di primo arrivo, indi Italiano, rifiutando o mandando indietro centinaia di immigrati, di cui molto unicamente economici.... Come pensavi mai potesse reagire il popolo italiano? Un popolo schiacciamo al 60% di tasse annuali e con un guadagno netto medio di 1400 Euro mensili! Va bene essere buonisti, ma con una visione però a 360 gradi cara Jhumpa!

  2. 4 out of 5

    Toni

    A marvelous collection of short stories from my favourite authors: Natalia Ginzburg, Italian Calvino, Luigi Pirandello, Giovanni Bernard, Dino Buzzati and many many others. A wide variety of styles and topics to give the reader a glimpse into Italian life and culture beyond what can be seen by even the most curious of tourists.. The authors of these forty stories mostly worked in the twentieth century and thus provide a fascinating background into what the Italian contemporary society is based on A marvelous collection of short stories from my favourite authors: Natalia Ginzburg, Italian Calvino, Luigi Pirandello, Giovanni Bernard, Dino Buzzati and many many others. A wide variety of styles and topics to give the reader a glimpse into Italian life and culture beyond what can be seen by even the most curious of tourists.. The authors of these forty stories mostly worked in the twentieth century and thus provide a fascinating background into what the Italian contemporary society is based on. Not surprisingly, the issue of identity - linguistic, geographic, political, cultural- is among the most prominent questions discussed in this collection. Although most of the writers represented here are among household names in Italy, not all of them are well-known in English speaking countries. My admiration and gratitude for the translators' hard work and love of Italian language with all its rich nuances that helped to create this wonderful book. Thank you to Edelweiss and the publisher for the ARC provided in exchange for an honest opinion.

  3. 5 out of 5

    Anima

    Giovanni Verga 1840–1922 “Catania, on the eastern coast of Sicily, was destroyed more than once by earthquakes and eruptions of Mount Aetna. The effect of its late baroque reconstruction begun in 1693, from lava stone, is at once grim and spectacular. Still charged with the weight of disaster, the city personifies drama, destruction and rebirth. Verga, astride the nineteenth and twentieth centuries and the eldest author of this collection, was raised there, but to produce his art he had to get awa Giovanni Verga 1840–1922 “Catania, on the eastern coast of Sicily, was destroyed more than once by earthquakes and eruptions of Mount Aetna. The effect of its late baroque reconstruction begun in 1693, from lava stone, is at once grim and spectacular. Still charged with the weight of disaster, the city personifies drama, destruction and rebirth. Verga, astride the nineteenth and twentieth centuries and the eldest author of this collection, was raised there, but to produce his art he had to get away, first to Florence, immersing himself in its literary culture, and then to Milan, where he lived for twenty years (although he made frequent journeys back to Sicily). He was born three months after Thomas Hardy, an author with whom he bears comparison. Both wrote about hardship, family and fatal passions with lyricism and pessimism.[..]” Picturesque Lives Translated by G. H. McWilliam “... Did you ever, after an autumn shower, find yourself scattering an army of ants as you carelessly traced the name of your latest boyfriend in the sand along the boulevard? Some of those poor little creatures would have remained stuck on the ferrule of your umbrella, writhing in agony, but all the others, after five minutes of rushing about in panic, would have returned to cling on desperately to their dark little ant-heap. You wouldn’t go back there, certainly, and neither would I. But in order to understand that kind of stubbornness, which in some respects is heroic, we have to reduce ourselves to the same level, restrict our whole horizon to what lies between a couple of mounds of earth, and place their tiny hearts under a microscope to discover what makes them beat. Would you, too, like to take a look through this lens here, you who contemplate life through the other end of a telescope? You’ll think it a curious spectacle, and it might amuse you, perhaps. [..] But meanwhile, the memories I send you now, so far away from you in every sense, inebriated as you are with feasting and flowers, will bring a refreshing breeze to play upon the feverish round of your endless revelry. On the day you go back there, if you ever do go back, and we sit together again, kicking up stones with our feet and visions in our thoughts, perhaps we shall talk about those other breezes that life elsewhere has to offer. Imagine, if you like, that my mind is fixed on that unknown little corner of the world because you once stepped into it, or in order to avert my gaze from the dazzling glare of precious stones and fevered expectation that accompanies your every movement, or because I have sought you out in vain in all the places smiled upon by fashion. ... .“

  4. 4 out of 5

    Stella ☆Paper Wings☆

    Avg. Rating: 4.275 I think this was my first taste of Italian fiction, and I really enjoyed it. I would definitely recommend this collection to anyone who's experiencing the genre for the first time, although it is a very long and immersive read. It's nice to have a little biography of the author before each story, to give some personal and historical context, especially for the speculative fiction and magical realism that might require a bit more context. It also gave me the opportunity to learn Avg. Rating: 4.275 I think this was my first taste of Italian fiction, and I really enjoyed it. I would definitely recommend this collection to anyone who's experiencing the genre for the first time, although it is a very long and immersive read. It's nice to have a little biography of the author before each story, to give some personal and historical context, especially for the speculative fiction and magical realism that might require a bit more context. It also gave me the opportunity to learn more about the world of Italian short fiction outside of the 40 stories included in this book. While I don't know much about what other Italian short stories are out there, it seems like the selections came from a diverse group of writers from different backgrounds, genders, and time periods. It would have been nice to see some 21st century authors, but I understand why they stuck to the 19th and 20th centuries. Having read quite a few works in translation, it was interesting to read all the notes about how this was translated, because that can make a big impact on the sound of the story. It did seem like the translations for a few of the stories might have stayed too literal, making them difficult to understand, but overall I felt like the voices of the initial authors shone through. I'll definitely have to venture into more Italian literature in the future, which I guess is probably the point of this collection. I think I'll also explore some of the other penguin short story collections, namely the The Penguin Book of Japanese Short Stories. Several novels have landed on my TBR as a result of this book: Coversations in Sicily by Elio Vittorini, The Day of the Owl by Leonardo Sciacia, The Time of Indifference by Alberto Moravia, Natalia by Fausta Cialente, Tempo di Uccidere by Ennio Flaiano, Ernesto by Umberto Saba, Artemisia by Anna Banti, and La Città del Sole by Tommaso Campanella. I've also had The Leopard by Giuseppe Tomasi Di Lampedusa on my TBR for some time, and while I didn't like his story in this collection, I still want to read that as well. I'm definitely not going to read all of those since I have almost 800 books on my goodreads TBR, but I can dream. I'd welcome recommendations for any other Italian classics or modern Italian fiction I shouldn't miss! My favorite stories in the collection were Name and Tears, The Long Voyage, Bago, The Tower, The Other Side of the Moon, A Martian in Rome, and Invitation to Dinner. I'm not going to review every one of these stories like I would for most anthologies considering there are fourty of them, but here are my ratings for each: "Name and Tears" by Elio Vittorini ☆☆☆☆☆ "Picturesque Lives" by Giovanni Verga ☆☆☆ "The Siren" by Giuseppe Tomasi Di Lampedusa ☆.5 "Against Time" by Antonio Tabucchi ☆☆☆☆☆ "Generous Wine" by Italo Svevo ☆☆☆.5 "The Long Voyage" by Leonardo Sciascia ☆☆☆☆☆ "Bago" by Alberto Savino ☆☆☆☆☆ "The Hen" by Umberto Saba ☆☆☆☆.5 "The Lady" by Lalla Romano ☆☆☆☆ "The Tower" by Fabrizia Ramondino ☆☆☆☆☆ "The Trap" by Luigi Pirandello ☆☆☆.5 "The Wedding Trip" by Cesare Pavese ☆☆☆☆ "Melancholy" by Geofredi Parise ☆☆☆☆ "Silence" by Aldo Palazzeschi ☆☆☆☆.5 "A Pair of Eyeglasses" by Anna Maria Ortese ☆☆☆☆ "The Other Side of the Moon" by Alberto Moravia ☆☆☆☆☆ "The Ambitious Ones" by Elsa Morante ☆☆☆☆.5 16, 21, 28, and 27 from "Centuria" by Giorgio Manganelli ☆☆☆☆ "Quaestio de Centauris" by Primo Levi ☆☆.5 "Gogol's Wife" by Tommaso Landolfi ☆☆☆☆ 'My Husband" by Natalia Ginzburg ☆☆☆☆ "The Mother" by Carlo Emilio Gadda ☆☆☆ "A Martian in Rome" by Ennio Flaiano ☆☆☆☆☆ "The Smell of Death" by Beppe Fenoglio ☆☆☆.5 "Life as a Couple" by Luce D'Eramo ☆☆☆☆.5 "The Milliner" by Antonio Delfini ☆☆☆ "The Hind" by Grazia Deledda ☆☆☆☆.5 "Invitation to Dinner" by Alba De Céspedes ☆☆☆☆☆ "Elegy for Signora Nodier" by Silvio D'Arzo ☆☆☆.5 "Malpasso" by Fausta Cialente ☆☆☆☆ "At the Station" by Carlo Cassola ☆☆☆☆ "The Golden Nut" by Christina Campo ☆☆☆☆ "Dialogue with a Tortoise" by Italo Calvino ☆☆.5 "And Yet They Are Knocking at Your Door" by Dino Buzzati ☆☆☆☆.5 "The Miraculous Beach or, Prize for Modesty" by Massimo Bontempelli ☆☆☆ "A Geographical Error" by Romano Bilenchi ☆☆☆☆☆ "The Streetwalker" by Luciano Bianciardi ☆☆ "Miss" by Anna Banti ☆☆☆☆☆ "The Baboon" by Giovanni Arpino ☆☆ "Barefoot" by Corrado Alvaro ☆☆☆.5

  5. 4 out of 5

    Alan Teder

    Reading in Progress, these are notes for writing a later review Table of Contents Introduction by Jhumpa Lahiri A Note on the Citation of Titles and Their Translations 1. “Name and Tears” by Elio Vittorini (1908-1966) translated from Nome e lagrime by Erica Segre and Simon Carnell. 2. “Picturesque Lives” by Giovanni Verga (1840-1922) translated from Fantasticheria in Tutte le novelle by G.H. William 3. “The Siren” by Giuseppe Tomasi di Lampedusa • “Against Time” by Antonio Tabucchi • “Generous Wi Reading in Progress, these are notes for writing a later review Table of Contents Introduction by Jhumpa Lahiri A Note on the Citation of Titles and Their Translations 1. “Name and Tears” by Elio Vittorini (1908-1966) translated from Nome e lagrime by Erica Segre and Simon Carnell. 2. “Picturesque Lives” by Giovanni Verga (1840-1922) translated from Fantasticheria in Tutte le novelle by G.H. William 3. “The Siren” by Giuseppe Tomasi di Lampedusa • “Against Time” by Antonio Tabucchi • “Generous Wine” by Italo Svevo • “The Long Voyage” by Leonardo Sciascia • “Bago” by Alberto Savinio • “The Hen” by Umberto Saba • “The Lady” by Lalla Romano • “The Tower” by Fabrizia Ramondino • “The Trap” by Luigi Pirandello • “Wedding Trip” by Cesare Pavese • “Melancholy” by Goffredo Parise • “Silence” by Aldo Palazzeschi • “A Pair of Eye/glasses” by Anna Maria Ortese • “The Other Side of the Moon” by Alberto Moravia • “The Ambitious Ones” by Elsa Morante • “Sixteen, Twenty-one, Twenty-eight and Thirty-seven” from Centuria by Giorgio Manganelli • “Quaestio de Centauris” by Primo Levi • “Gogol’s Wife” by Tommaso Landolfi • “My Husband” by Natalia Ginzburg • “The Mother” by Carlo Emilio Gadda • “A Martian in Rome” by Ennio Flaiano • “The Smell of Death” by Beppe Fenoglio • “Life as a Couple” by Luce D’Eramo • “The Milliner” by Antonio Delfini • “The Hind” by Grazia Deledda • “Invitation to Dinner” by Alba de Céspedes • “Elegy for Signora Nodier” by Silvio D’Arzo • “Malpasso” by Fausta Cialente • “At the Station” by Carlo Cassola • “The Golden Nut” by Cristina Campo • “Dialogue with a Tortoise” by Italo Calvino • “And Yet They Are Knocking at Your Door” by Dino Buzzati • “The Miraculous Beach, or, Prize for Modesty” by Massimo Bontempelli • “A Geographical Error” by Romano Bilenchi • “The Streetwalker” by Luciano Bianciardi • “Miss” by Anna Banti • “The Baboon” by Giovanni Arpino • “Barefoot” by Corrado Alvaro Notes Chronology Further Reading Acknowledgments About the Translators

  6. 4 out of 5

    Jake Baker

    This collection is my first exposure to any of these Italian authors. Like every collection of short stories, some were stronger than others - some were a joy to read through, and others were a bit of a slog. But, overall, I really enjoyed this collection! I loved the mini-biographies preceding each story. I would encourage anyone to give these Italian authors a shot! Excellent work, Lahiri.

  7. 5 out of 5

    Luigi De Angelis

    You can see Jhumpa Lahiri's impeccable work as an editor in this brilliant collection of Italian short stories. If you are interested in Italian literature, this book is an excellent introduction to many authors, some of them absolutely central in the development of this particular literary tradition. If you simply love short fiction, this collection is a source of eclectic pleasures. You might like some stories more than others (that is normal, especially since their styles and themes are so di You can see Jhumpa Lahiri's impeccable work as an editor in this brilliant collection of Italian short stories. If you are interested in Italian literature, this book is an excellent introduction to many authors, some of them absolutely central in the development of this particular literary tradition. If you simply love short fiction, this collection is a source of eclectic pleasures. You might like some stories more than others (that is normal, especially since their styles and themes are so different); however, unlike other collections of this sort, I think that the quality is quite consistent. Some of my favorite selections are 'Picturesque Lives,' by Giovanni Verga; 'The Siren,' by Giuseppe Tomasi di Lampedusa, 'A Pair of Eyeglasses,' by Anna Maria Ortese; and 'The Hen,' by Umberto Saba. Opinions will vary depending on the reader. The important thing is that this is a rewarding and rich book, una meraviglia!

  8. 4 out of 5

    Elisa

    Miei racconti preferiti: - Fantasticheria, Giovanni Verga - La sirena, G. Tomasi di Lampedusa - Il lungo viaggio, Leonardo Sciascia - La gallina, Umberto Saba - Malinconia, Goffredo Parise - Un paio di occhiali, Anna Maria Ortese - Un marziano a Roma, Ennio Flaiano - Invito a pranzo, Alba de Céspedes - Malpasso, Alba Cialente - Eppure battono alla porta, Dino Buzzati

  9. 5 out of 5

    Lee McKerracher

    For those of us who live in countries where English is the first language, we tend to only get exposure to authors who write in English. The 'best sellers' get promoted and to the exclusion of others and it can be difficult to track down authors from other countries and get to explore their writing. Jhumpa Lahiri has pulled together a wonderful collection of 40 short stories from the 20th century by a broad selection of Italian authors. The work has been translated into English and provides an en For those of us who live in countries where English is the first language, we tend to only get exposure to authors who write in English. The 'best sellers' get promoted and to the exclusion of others and it can be difficult to track down authors from other countries and get to explore their writing. Jhumpa Lahiri has pulled together a wonderful collection of 40 short stories from the 20th century by a broad selection of Italian authors. The work has been translated into English and provides an enticing journey across Italian literature, culture, beliefs, customs and politics. Included are some of the big names: Lampedusa, Svevo, Sciascia, Gaddo and Calvino but there are others included which most people would not have experienced before. It's an eclectic mix and well worth curling up on the couch and devoting time winding through the vast array of drama, intrigue, passion, contradiction, love and humour.

  10. 5 out of 5

    Emily

    This diverse collection of stories focuses on late-nineteenth century and twentieth century authors from all parts of Italy, including Italo Calvino, Tommaso Landolfi, and Nobel Prize winner Grazia Deledda. In addition to translating several of the stories, Jhumpa Lahiri also does a beautiful job curating this collection and introducing each author. A few of my favorites included "The Siren" by Giuseppe Tomasi di Lampedusa, "Quaestio de Centauris" by Primo Levi, and "A Pair of Eyeglasses" by Ann This diverse collection of stories focuses on late-nineteenth century and twentieth century authors from all parts of Italy, including Italo Calvino, Tommaso Landolfi, and Nobel Prize winner Grazia Deledda. In addition to translating several of the stories, Jhumpa Lahiri also does a beautiful job curating this collection and introducing each author. A few of my favorites included "The Siren" by Giuseppe Tomasi di Lampedusa, "Quaestio de Centauris" by Primo Levi, and "A Pair of Eyeglasses" by Anna Maria Ortese--but these are only a few of the gems in this collection.

  11. 4 out of 5

    Tony Cheang

    Delightful! What a range of style and concern with heartbreaking and the strange. Lahiri's love for Italian literature in the intro hooked me, and the inclusion of mini-bios of each author before their story was a nice touch. I read it over a span of many months, so I have somewhat a hard time recalling all of them. But here are some I remember particularly enjoying: - Picturesque Lives, Giovanni Verga - The Siren, Giuseppe Tomasi di Lampedusa - The Hen, Umberto Saba - Melancholy, Goffredo Parise - Th Delightful! What a range of style and concern with heartbreaking and the strange. Lahiri's love for Italian literature in the intro hooked me, and the inclusion of mini-bios of each author before their story was a nice touch. I read it over a span of many months, so I have somewhat a hard time recalling all of them. But here are some I remember particularly enjoying: - Picturesque Lives, Giovanni Verga - The Siren, Giuseppe Tomasi di Lampedusa - The Hen, Umberto Saba - Melancholy, Goffredo Parise - The Milliner, Antonio Delfini - And Yet They Are Knocking at Your Door, Dino Buzzati

  12. 4 out of 5

    Ray Penn

    There is much to enjoy here. The selection is wide ranging, concentrating on 20th century writers, presumably choosing the best of each writer's short fiction. The writing is confident and uninhibited, with many passages of unembarrassed and often harsh self-examination. The respective roles of males and females is a recurring theme. I think I would have enjoyed the book more if quality rather than inclusion played a higher role in the selection process, with fewer authors represented but more t There is much to enjoy here. The selection is wide ranging, concentrating on 20th century writers, presumably choosing the best of each writer's short fiction. The writing is confident and uninhibited, with many passages of unembarrassed and often harsh self-examination. The respective roles of males and females is a recurring theme. I think I would have enjoyed the book more if quality rather than inclusion played a higher role in the selection process, with fewer authors represented but more than one of their best works.

  13. 5 out of 5

    Federica Malpasso

    È una buona raccolta di novelle che mi ha tenuto compagnia per qualche settimana. Le storie presenti sono 40, 41 se si aggiunge incorrettamente al conto anche l’introduzione della Lahiri. Vi sono state novelle che ho poco apprezzato, mentre altre che ho notevolmente amato. Tra tutte suggerirei i titoli “Nome e lagrime” (Vittorini), La sirena (Di Lampedusa), Malpasso (Cialente), La noce d’oro (Campo), La signorina (Banti).

  14. 4 out of 5

    Angelica

    Una raccolta interessante per tutti coloro che vogliano approcciarsi alla letteratura del '900 italiano scoprendo anche autori non conosciutissimi come Savinio e la De Céspedes. Le brevissime introduzioni della Lahiri non forniscono altro che qualche informazione di tipo biografico, una paginetta scarsa per raccontare vita e opere principali. Ho pianto calde lacrime leggendo il racconto della Ortese "Gli occhiali", a mio avviso il migliore della raccolta. Una raccolta interessante per tutti coloro che vogliano approcciarsi alla letteratura del '900 italiano scoprendo anche autori non conosciutissimi come Savinio e la De Céspedes. Le brevissime introduzioni della Lahiri non forniscono altro che qualche informazione di tipo biografico, una paginetta scarsa per raccontare vita e opere principali. Ho pianto calde lacrime leggendo il racconto della Ortese "Gli occhiali", a mio avviso il migliore della raccolta.

  15. 4 out of 5

    Allison

    This took me forever to finish because my reading focus just hasn’t been there lately. I enjoyed the biographies and many, but not all, of the stories. I’m very glad that I persevered.

  16. 4 out of 5

    Amina Ahsan

    Interesting and varied collection of short stories. Some of them were totally gripping.

  17. 5 out of 5

    Gregorito

    Real treasure chest, filled with incredible collection of gems. A MUST!

  18. 4 out of 5

    Peter De Cauwer

  19. 5 out of 5

    Margaux

  20. 4 out of 5

    William Rockwood

  21. 5 out of 5

    Brenna Terry

  22. 5 out of 5

    Odilia

  23. 4 out of 5

    Teodora Udrescu

  24. 4 out of 5

    Grace

  25. 4 out of 5

    Ulana

  26. 5 out of 5

    Seiji Takahashi

  27. 5 out of 5

    Heather Orlando Jerabek

  28. 5 out of 5

    Justin Isana

  29. 4 out of 5

    Emil Trahan

  30. 5 out of 5

    Alyssa Pritts

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