Good Master, what shall I do that I may receive life everlasting?
And Jesus said to him:
Why callest thou me good? None is good but one, that is God.
When the apparently mild-mannered retired teacher Domenico Stasi learns that a former student of his is being held as a suspected terrorist he seeks her out to assure himself of her innocence, to convince himself that his teachings have not contributed to the creation of a monster. But she proudly declares her guilt. What’s more, she entrusts him with a task that initially seems a child’s game but soon becomes much more serious. Now someone is watching Domenico Stasi. And the mysterious “contact” to whom his former student directed him has a gun for Stasi and instructions to kill a man. A deadly game has been put into play—nothing can stop its course. But is everything what it appears to be? Who is Domenico Stasi: killer, victim, or hapless fall guy? The writer himself is the demiurge of this story, but perhaps he too is implicated in the imminent crime. Only one thing is certain: no one here is innocent.
Domenico Starnone was born in Naples and lives in Rome. He is the author of thirteen works of fiction, including First Execution (Europa, 2009), Via Gemito, winner of Italy’s most prestigious literary prize, the Strega, and Ties (Europa, 2017), a New York Times Editors’ Pick, and The Sunday Times’ best novel in translation of 2017.