By Corrado Augias
Certainly one of Italy's best-known writers takes a Grand journey via her towns, historical past, and literature looking for the real personality of this contradictory country. there's Michelangelo, but in addition the mafia. Pavarotti, but additionally Berlusconi. The debonair Milanese, but in addition the notorious captain of the Costa Concordia cruise send. this can be Italy, well known and reviled, a rustic that has guarded her secrets and techniques and confounded outsiders. Now, whilst this "Italian paradox" is extra obtrusive than ever, cultural authority Corrado Augias poses the complicated questions: how did it get this fashion? How can this peninsula be at the same time the house of geniuses and criminals, the cradle of good looks and the butt of jokes?
An rapid number one bestseller in Italy, Augias's most modern units out to rediscover the story-different from the history-of this state. starting with how Italy is obvious from the surface and from the interior, he weaves a geo-historical narrative, passing via central towns and rereading the classics and the biographies of the folk that experience, for greater or worse, made Italians who they're. From the gloomy surroundings of Cagliostro's Palermo to the dependent court docket of Maria Luigia in Parma, from the ghetto of Venice to the heroic Neapolitan rebellion opposed to the Nazis, Augias sheds mild at the Italian personality, explaining it to outsiders and to Italians themselves. the result's a "novel of a nation," whose protagonists are either the figures we all know from heritage and literature and characters lengthy hidden among the cracks of old narrative and reminiscence.