Letters from London and Europe

Overview

The first-ever translation into English of Lampedusa's correspondence includes recently discovered, previously unpublished letters and unreleased photographs of London by the author of The Leopard himself
 
The Leopard, published posthumously in 1958, was one of the most important works of fiction to appear in the Italian language in the 20th century. Between 1925 and 1930, its author, Giuseppe Tomasi di Lampedusa, wrote a number of ...

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Overview

The first-ever translation into English of Lampedusa's correspondence includes recently discovered, previously unpublished letters and unreleased photographs of London by the author of The Leopard himself
 
The Leopard, published posthumously in 1958, was one of the most important works of fiction to appear in the Italian language in the 20th century. Between 1925 and 1930, its author, Giuseppe Tomasi di Lampedusa, wrote a number of letters to his cousins Casimiro and Lucio Piccolo in which he describes his travels around Europe (London, Paris, Zurich, and Berlin). The letters display much of Lampedusa's distinctive style present in his later work; not only the razor-sharp introspection, but also a wicked sense of humor, playful in its description of the comédie humaine. United and underpinned by the genre of the novel, Lampedusa's lifetime obsession, some letters also read like excerpts from a Stendhalian travel journal, while others are adventures populated with comic, exaggerated personalities.

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Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly
Born to an aristocratic Italian family in 1896, di Lampedusa (best known as the author of The Leopard) took advantage of his birthright by traveling through Europe. Centered around his trips from 1925 to 1930, the letters collected in this intriguing if erratic volume (translated into English for the first time), provide a snapshot of a time and place, and of the developing writer. Corresponding primarily with his cousins, di Lampedusa adopts a third-person voice and moniker (“The Monster”), wittily embellishing the sobriquet at the end of each letter with a variety of adjectives (“The super-fed Monster,” “The Alpine Monster”). The letters vary in length and interest, though the correspondence from England is particularly vibrant, and he clearly loved that country. Di Lampedusa’s love of literature and art resonates, as does a tantalizing obsession with food, cinema, and radio. An introduction and biographical note provide context, though more focused, contextual notes would have been helpful. Photos. Agent: The Wylie Agency. (Jan.)
From the Publisher
"The letters bring to mind E. F. Benson’s Lucia novels . . . because of Lampedusa’s ability to turn the most banal of events into a riveting story."  —Telegraph

"These witty dispatches from an indolent aristocrat abroad are a real joy. . . . More than half a century after his death, Lampedusa has pulled off the characteristically insouciant coup of writing a brilliant travel book by accident."  —Observer

"Intriguing...Di Lampedusa’s love of literature and art resonates, as does a tantalizing obsession with food, cinema, and radio."  —Publishers Weekly

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781846881374
  • Publisher: Alma Books
  • Publication date: 9/1/2012
  • Pages: 288
  • Sales rank: 1,096,189
  • Product dimensions: 5.00 (w) x 7.70 (h) x 0.90 (d)

Meet the Author

Giuseppe Tomasi di Lampedusa, (1896–1957) is famous for his only novel, The Leopard, published posthumously, which earned him the prestigious Strega Prize and became the basis of a now-classic film. J.G. Nichols has translated many of the greatest classics of Italian literature, including Dante's Inferno, Boccaccio's Decameron and Leopardi's Canti, and has been awarded the Florio Prize and the Monselice Prize for translation.

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