Italy (Einaudi Stile Libero) – Sei come sei
Melania G. Mazzucco
Sei come sei (You Are How You Are)
A novel, Einaudi Stile Libero, October 2013, 244 pages

Premio Internazionale Molinello 2014

“Eva comes out as an authentic literary heroin.”
la Repubblica

“A defense of freedom… a wonderful, fundamental novel.”
La Vanguardia

A daughter and her two fathers: a normal family. A wish fulfilled and a broken dream. The courage and tenderness to disarm prejudices.
There’s a little girl riding the Milan-Rome train – alone and on the run after a violent quarrel with her classmates. Eva is a proud girl who reads a lot of books and has a gift for telling stories. She’s only eleven years old, but already knows pain and abandonment. Giose is an instinctive man, exuberant and affectionate to a fault. He was a rising star in the punk-rock scene of the 1980s, then fell in love with Christian, a young Latin professor. Eva is their daughter. To have her they had to go to Armenia, where Eva was born. Theirs was a happy family, but it started to break apart with the sudden death of Christian.
The former musician was deemed to be an unsuitable guardian, so he is holing up in a farmhouse in the Apennine Mountains. Eva was entrusted to her uncle and moved to Milan. She hasn’t seen him for some time, but Giose is the first and only person Eva thinks of when she flees from a frightening reality. Almost miraculously she manages to find him, and they leave together on a trip through Italy in which she discovers a lot about herself, about her two fathers, the feelings that unite people beyond roles and laws, and the wonderful story to which she owes her life.
You Are How You Are is dramatic and entertaining, as fast-paced as an adventure novel. With grace, tenderness and emotional depth, it tells the story of love between a father and a daughter, a love at once utterly unique and universal, with which each of us can identify.

“He told her the truth, this morning, as soon as they woke up, groggy from the heat and wrapped in the blankets of the sofa-bed. One day he’ll bring her to Armenia. But not today – or even tomorrow. When they get back together and she’ll be able to travel with him. They won’t take the plane, they’ll go by car. Cross the Adriatic, Greece and Asia Minor, over borders, riding along the Black Sea’s stark coast, past the green tea plantations and the abandoned rusted factories of Georgia, and they’ll climb the mountains, and the time it takes to close the distance that separates them from Yerevan will make her understand just how much she was wanted, dreamed of, and sought – to the ends of the world.”

Melania G. Mazzucco

Melania G. Mazzucco was born and lives in Rome. She is the author of Il bacio della Medusa (1996), La camera di Baltus (1998), Lei così amata (2000, Premio Napoli), about the writer Annemarie Schwarzenbach, Vita (2003, Premio Strega), Un giorno perfetto (2005), on which was based the movie with the same title by Ferzan Ozpetek, and two works about the Italian Renaissance painter Tintoretto: the novel La lunga attesa dell’angelo (2008, Premio Bagutta) and the essay Jacomo Tintoretto e i suoi figli (2009, Premio Comisso). In 2011 she received the Premio letterario Viareggio-Tobino as Author of the Year. Then, she wrote Limbo (2012, Premio Elsa Morante, Premio Rhegium Julii, Premio Matteotti, Premio Bottari Lattes Grinzane), Il bassotto e la Regina (2012, Premio Frignano Ragazzi 2013), Sei come sei (2013), Il museo del mondo (2014), in which she narrates 54 works of art, Io sono con te (2016, Rai Radio 3 Fahrenheit‘s Book of the Year), L’architettrice (2019, Premio Alassio, Premio Capalbio). In 2020 she won the Premio alla Carriera John Fante. She created and wrote the docu-film Tintoretto. A Rebel in Venice, a 2019 Sky Arts original production distributed in cinemas all over the world. She wrote for the theatre, the cinema and the radio and is a contributor to la Repubblica. Her books have been translated in 27 languages.

 

 

“Eva comes out as an authentic literary heroin.”
la Repubblica

“A touching novel, full of books, intuitions, shadows, and other stories, minute and detailed like miniatures.”
l’Unità

Sei come sei is astonishing.”
D – la Repubblica delle donne

“A precise and deep writing, an educated, engaging eye… a precious reading.”
Tuttolibri

“For 235 pages Sei come sei kidnaps the reader, making him suffer and hope with this little girl.”
Io donna

Sei come sei openly faces questions for which not always an answer is needed.”
Gioia

“Mazzucco speaks of homosexuality as only few have done.”
El Mundo – El Cultural

“This is precisely the subject of the novel: the male desire to have children, male parenthood, a subject for which the Italian painters haven’t found, says the narrator, ‘colors or feeling’. And neither do novelists… This is Mazzucco’s literary challenge and she successfully succeed.”
El País

You Are How You Are is a fragment of our reality and everyone should read it. Its style, its quotes, its literary allusions lead us to the true essence of fiction.”
El Mundo – El Cultural

“A defense of freedom… a wonderful, fundamental novel.”
La Vanguardia

Foreign rights sold in
Spain: Anagrama
Sweden: Contempo

Italian and international editions

Foreign publishers of Melania G. Mazzucco’s works
Albania: Albas
Bulgaria: Uniscorp, Jelenkor
Canada: HarperCollins, Harper Perennial
China: Horizon
Croatia: Oceanmore
Denmark: Tellerup, Turbine
Finland: Avain
France: Flammarion, J’ai lu, Editions du Club
Germany, Austria and Switzerland: Piper, Knaus, btb, Hoffmann und Campe
Georgia: Sulakauri
Greece: Diigisi, Modern Times
Hungary: Európa Könyvkiadó
Israel: Schocken, Kinneret Zmora-Bitan Dvir
Japan: Michitani
Korea: Random House Corea
The Netherlands and Belgium: Mouria, Atlas-Contact
Norway: Cappelen
Poland: Wab-Foksal
Romania: Polirom
Russia: Ast
Serbia: Mono j Manjana, Sezam Book
Spain and South America: Seix Barral, Planeta, Anagrama
Sweden: Norsteds, Contempo
Turkey: Yapi Kredi Culture and Arts, Doğan Kitap
UK: Pushkin
US and UK: Farrar, Straus & Giroux, Picador, Thornedike Press

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