“Maria Castellitto recounts what happens when we want to not believe in salvation, but fail, and a writer’s voice is born who has already gone beyond the generational story.” Ginevra Lamberti
“A novel of indomitable nihilism that is moving and makes you laugh.” Teresa Ciabatti
“With a wonderfully heartbreaking prose, Maria Castellitto speaks to us of the desire to die that stumbles upon the opportunity to kill. And everything changes.” Romana Petri
“With a syncopated, almost trap-like writing, Maria Castellitto moves us and makes us reflect on the fact that those who have never had a secret are unprepared to face the future.” Marcello Fois
“Between the bang and madness, between time and the clock, there is always a gun. An expatriate in London, a flickering language, a writer “who can do everything.” Elena Stancanelli
Anyone who has never had a secret is unprepared to face the future.
“I’m on Blackfriars Bridge. The night has come when I step away from the competition out of principle. Which principle, I don’t know. There are two solid ones: love and violence. I don’t know neither how to love nor violate your rules.”
London is a mine by night and a construction site by day. Between its scaffolding and tunnels, Duna graduated in Philosophy from the most enlightened university in England, and now she reads screenplays or almost-screenplays. She almost reads. Indeed, more than anything else she imagines. Although she is very young, Duna already has a previous life. Between life now, sitting at a desk in front of an older colleague who treats her kindly and who certainly loves her, and her life before in Rome, sitting in a classroom or on a scooter in the company of Veronica, there is a bullet whose victim has not yet been decided. Duna wanted to write a novel, but she stopped. The protagonist was a boy dressed as a clown, armed with a cleaver. Maybe he wasn’t a stranger. Duna plays with Alexander, a brilliant and moody friend committed to a psychiatric clinic. They talk to each other through advertising slogans. And Duna walks, through London, she walks dragging her bicycle with her. Her disenchantment is devoted to the idea of demonstrating that others exist and do not abandon us. Duna meets a famous young singer, Clement. They fall in love. But the happy ending, in fairy tales as in life, always depends on where you stop telling the story, and here they don’t stop in time. As Duna is returning from a party she’s gone to with him, crossing Blackfriars bridge on a night in which she is contemplating suicide more intensely than on others, she meets a man. And the man has a gun. Between her life now, in London, with no love anymore, and her life after that, still in London (but who knows for how long), there’s that bullet and its victim.
Maria Castellitto’s precise and melancholy writing, with its nihilistic and comic tones, reveals a young debut talent among Italian fiction.
There is nothing in the world that can make us change: there is nothing in others, there is us.
Publication date: 24.01.2023
Number of Pages: 144