My rating: 3 of 5 stars
Around the World: 12 of 52
This is a slim volume of short stories set in Sicily by one of Italy's most acclaimed writers, but took me a while to read, because they are just... difficult. The landscape is heartless, the people are either desperately poor or terribly corrupt, and illness colors the air.
The translator, D.H. Lawrence, says in his introduction:
"During the 'fifties and 'sixties, Sicily is said to have been the poorest place in Europe: absolutely penniless. A Sicilian peasant might live through his whole life without ever possessing as much as a dollar, in hard cash."
This is the Sicily portrayed in the stories. There are characters and situations that tie one to another, capturing a specific period on the island.
(To see a more delicious portrayal of Sicilian culture, check out the cake I made.)