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15 Contemporary Italian Writers You Should Read (who aren’t Elena Ferrante)

Newspaper: Three Monkeys Online
Date: Oct 28 2016

Alessandro Baricco, born in Turin in 1958, is an important figure on the Italian literary scene, not just for his own books – six of which are available in English – but also because of his founding of the Holden School (named after Salinger’s character in Catcher in the Rye, which in Italian is actually titled Il giovane Holden) for writing. Through that school, and his own writing, he has influenced a whole new generation of Italian writers (two of whom are on this list), looking towards the United States and the worlds of film and music. His theatre piece Novecento. Un monologo, which was later turned into one of Giueseppe Tornatore’s best loved films, La leggenda del pianista sull’oceano. His subject matter and settings have varied wildly – City is set in modern day America, while Silk is a historical novel set in Japan in the 1800s, for example – but the one thread that binds all his work is this love of storytelling, and a belief in the transformative power of stories. Reviewing City, the Independent newspaper wrote “along with flashes of love it reveals for old-fashioned storytelling, City boldly displays its futurist credentials…Baricco’s narrative virtuosity continues to astonish”