By Antonio Tabucchi

From Publishers Weekly
Tabucchi's fourth paintings to be translated into English capabilities as either a surrealistic secret novel and a philosophical inquiry into the character of lifestyles. yet muddy writing and a badly conceptualized tale line prevents it from understanding that magical caliber completed so without difficulty by means of Calvino, with whom the writer should be in comparison. Spino, a mortuary employee whose identify, Tabucchi coyly admits, is an abbreviation of Spinoza, turns into intrigued whilst the corpse of a tender guy who glided by the pseudonym "Carlo Nobodi" is introduced into the morgue. even though he was once killed in a bloody gun conflict with police, it's uncertain no matter if Carlo was once a part of a legal gang or simply an unfortunate bystander. Spino fixates at the secret surrounding the younger man's brief existence and demise, and determines to benefit up to he can. a sequence of palpable but baffling clues--an previous photo, a jacket that belonged to Carlo's father--leads Spino figuratively and actually to the outskirts of the Italian underworld, a realm he needs to input to accomplish his discovery, during this promising yet but finally troublesome paintings.

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Before starting their climb they had coffee in a café on the square. The little woman behind the counter watched them with a curiosity they satisfied by asking for directions to the sanctuary. She spoke in a harsh, rather primitive dialect, showing bad teeth. They gathered she was suggesting they eat in a trat­ toria that belonged to her daughter where the cooking was good and the prices reasonable. They decided instead to climb up the path marked in their guidebook. The book promised a steep but pic­ turesque walk with dramatic views across the bay and the countryside inland.

The facts were dug up by a young and very enterprising reporter who a few months ago caused pandemonium when he wrote about corruption on the docks. Spino sticks to the main story, skipping the opening paragraph about the fight against crime, full of clichés. “A tragic gun battle took place last night in the working-class Arsenale district in an apartment on the top floor of an old block in Via Casedipinte. Acting on EEE 1 9 20 = a tip-off from a source which police are keeping strictly secret, five men of the Police Special Corps raided the apartment shortly after midnight.

Perhaps he mistook them for a mature married couple wanting advice, who knows, or for two inquisitive tour­ ists. He invited them to sit on a small couch in a bare room: there was a dark table, a small organ, a book­ case with glass doors. On the table, with a chestnut leaf to mark his place, was a book about destiny and the tarot. Then Spino said he had come about a man who had died, and the priest immediately understood and asked if they were relatives or friends of the man. Neither, he said.

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