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The Faithful Lover


The Faithful Lover, winner of the prestigious Strega Prize, is a sumptuously imagined collection of short stories that live on the border of our everyday world. Brilliantly bringing the psychology of desire to life these stories illuminate the sinful and vengeful, the redemptive and charitable, that abide in all of us. Whether a young man wishes to obtain a rare flower for his mother or an eighty year old woman leaves her final bequest to her family, there is always a depth, a shadow, a mystery that transports the reader from the everyday into the fantastic. The final masterpiece of one the twentieth century s most unjustly overlooked writers, The Faithful Lover is now available to English speaking audiences for the first time.



Two novels by one of the masters of 20th century Italian fiction, published in English for the first time.


Richly imbued with imagination, charming in their humorous irony, and eminently readable, both The Boy with Two Mothers and The Life and Death of Adria and Her Children are alive with a subtle "magic," presenting unforgettable characters across a canvas of European socio-political upheaval. These are classic stories which will haunt the mind long after their reading. In each, Bontempelli fulfills what he believed was the writer's ultimate goal: "to tell a dream as if it were reality and reality as if it were a dream." Before the advent of the fantastic fiction we associate with Latin American writers, it was Massimo Bontempelli who, in 1926, defined a new literary style he called realismo magico. For decades afterward the term was everywhere almost synonymous with his name. At his death in 1960, the New York Times described Bontempelli as the "leader of the futuristic school in the 1920s... whose goal it was to create a world of fantasy which would have the objectivity of the natural world."




"Literature has its singers, its shouters, its talkers. There is also a company of writers who might be called the whisperers, those who speak softly and use soft words, occasionally admitting into their pages a little touch of irony. Such a whisperer was Umberto Saba. . . He writes as a connoisseur of disappointment." Irving Howe