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Published anonymously in Italy on the one-year anniversary of Ratzinger's election to the papacy, Against Ratzinger caused a national stir and immediately shot onto bestseller lists. Now America, the home of over 67 million Catholics, will have the opportunity to wrestle with this insightful and revealing examination of Pope Benedict XVI. This concise volume analyzes and critiques the pronouncements of Ratzinger. Addressing some of the most dramatic and pressing issues of our time, Against Ratzigner studies the Pope's responses to birth control, abortion, and sexual abuse in the Church. Against Ratzinger charts Ratzinger's rise to power from his arrival in Rome in 1981 and addresses his close relationship with the late Pope John Paul II.
Ricciardi has visions. He sees and hears the final seconds in the lives of victims of violent deaths. It is both a gift and a curse. It has helped him become one of the most acute and successful homicide detectives in the Naples police force. But all that horror and suffering has hollowed him out emotionally. He drinks and doesn't sleep. Other than his loyal partner Brigadier Maione he has no friends. Naples, 1931. In a working class apartment in the Sanita' neighborhood an elderly woman by the name of Carmela Calise has been beaten to death. When Ricciardi and Maione arrive at the scene they start asking the neighbors questions. No one wants to talk but slowly a few interesting facts slip out. Carmela Calise was moonlighting as a fortuneteller and moneylender. In her decrepit apartment she would receive clients, among them some of the city's rich and powerful, predicting their futures in such a way as to manipulate and deceive. If economic ruin lurked in their futures, Calise was happy to help. For a price, of course. She had many enemies, those indebted to her, manipulated by her lies, disappointed by her prophesies or destroyed by her machinations. Murder suspects in this atmospheric thriller abound and Commissario Ricciardi, one of the most original and intriguing investigators in contemporary crime fiction, will have his work cut out for him. .
This is Naples as you've never seen it before. A chaotic, shadowy city full of ominous echoes and dark alleyways where each inhabitant seems too absorbed by his or her own problems to give a damn about anybody else. And that is exactly what makes it possible for a cold, methodical killer to commit his atrocious crimes largely undisturbed, to merge with the crowd as if he were invisible. The newspapers call him "The Crocodile" because, like a crocodile, when he devours his own children, he cries. And like a crocodile he is a perfect killing machine: he waits and watches until his prey is within range, and then he strikes. Three young people with very diverse backgrounds have been found murdered in three different neighborhoods, each shot with a single bullet, execution style. While his colleagues see little or no connection, Inspector Giuseppe Lojacono, smells a rat. He is driven by his instincts and his own troubled recent history. He has just been transferred to Naples from Sicily where a Mafioso-turned-informant accused him of leaking sensitive information to the mob. Once an estimated member of the mobile unit of the Agrigento police force, Lojacono has lost everything, first and foremost the love of his wife and daughter. But now he's been given a second chance and a shot at clearing his name. A young magistrate, the beautiful Laura Piras, wants him in Naples. She's heard of his preternatural skills and his incredible powers of observation and she thinks a man like him is needed in Naples. So it is that Inspector Lojacono is charged with finding the link between the three dead bodies. At the root of these murders, he will discover, is a pain that still burns, a sense of guilt than cannot be purged, and one all-consuming love. .
In this fourth installment of the internationally successful Commissario Ricciardi series, the Commissario is investigating the death of Matteo, one of the many street urchins who live hand-to-mouth in the dark alleys of 1930s Naples. While at first the death seems provoked by natural causes, it quickly emerges that there's more to the tragedy than meets the eye. Commissario Ricciardi is the undisputed wizard of Neapolitan crime scenes. He solves every crime with an uncanny swiftness that leaves his colleagues dumbfounded. Indeed, there are those who think his abilities are the work of the devil, and unnatural and ungodly gift to be exorcised. And maybe they're right. Ricciardi sees the dead. He sees and hears the final moments in the lives of those who have suffered violent deaths. It may be a talent or it may be a curse, but it is nonetheless a kind of black magic. Sometimes, however, even black magic isn't enough. It's a rainy autumn in Naples and the fog lays thick over the city as its inhabitants celebrate the week of the dead. Ricciardi's instincts tell him that the dead boy is the victim of a murder, but investigating the homicide is not going to be easy. The authorities want to avoid any trouble, any sign that things are not as they ought to be in Naples, for they are preparing for the state visit of Benito Musolini. Ricciardi will have to conduct his investigation hidden from the eyes of his superiors. What's worse, his sixth sense is no help to him this time; the scene of the crime is silent, still, not a word or a sign, or even a scream from the dead. Has his unwelcome gift finally faded? Or is something more sinister at work? .
'I'm going back to what I was twenty years ago. I'm riding across a terrain of buried curiosity, the adrenaline is starting to flow again, and the old obsessions are coming back: I want to start doing cocaine every day, I want to run after every female who passes, I want to smell the smells of Italy again, I want my old life back. It's a bit late for all that, I know, but who gives a fuck? I want to die stark naked, drowned in a well of Ballantine's, surrounded by whores. All this I want, suddenly, I want it very much indeed. But I hide it well. ' This is the story of Tony Pagoda, a hero of our time, a man of incredible energies and appetites with a dark secret in his past and a unique perspective on the world. 1980s Italy is Tony's oyster. A charismatic singer, he is talented and successful, up to his neck in money, drugs and women, enjoying an extravagant lifestyle in Naples and Capri. But when life gets complicated, Tony decides it's time for a change. While on tour, he disappears to Brazil and an existence free from excess, where all he has to worry about are the herculean cockroaches. But after eighteen years of humid Amazonian exile, somebody is willing to sign a giant cheque to bring Tony back to Italy. How will he face the temptations of his old habits and the new century? A huge bestseller in Italy, Everybody's Right is an extraordinary debut novel from the award-winning film director Paolo Sorrentino. It is a book about Italy and a book about the modern world; a book about Tony and a book about all of us. Through Tony's irresistible voice Sorrentino illustrates his imaginative power and his incredible gifts for drama and satire.
The third book in a quartet of masterful crime novels set in fascist Italy. Naples 1931. Together with his indefatigable partner, Brigadier Maione, Ricciardi, a man driven into solitude by his paranormal 'gift' of seeing the final seconds of the lives of victims of violent deaths - a talent that also makes him a highly effective investigator - is conducting an investigation into the death of the beautiful and mysterious Duchess of Camparino, whose connections to privileged social circles and fascist elite make the case a powder keg waiting to blow.
Palermo in the 1980s. Fourteen hours from any place in what one might call the civilized world, a city of great beauty but torn by the second great Mafia gang wars. A perfect place for a young crime reporter to get his start.As our crime reporter looks back on his own youth, he lyrically retells four tragic stories that marked him: a Mafioso who refused to become a professional killer; a model whom he loved and couldn't save; a father who succumbed to hatred and jealousy; and a daughter in search of her lost honor. In The Four Corners of Palermo, Giuseppe Di Piazza brilliantly evokes the smell of blood and gunpowder, the averted gazes of a city in lock-down, and the forced hilarity of young people growing up in a Mafia reign of terror who, surrounded by death on all sides, affirm their humanity in each other's arms and beds.
When we think of the Italian Mafia, we think of Marlon Brando, Tony Soprano, and the Corleones--iconic actors and characters who give shady dealings a mythical pop presence. Yet these sensational depictions take us only so far. The true story of the Mafia reveals both an organization and mindset dedicated to the preservation of tradition. It is no accident that the rise of the Mafia coincided with the unification of Italy and the influx of immigrants into America. The Mafia means more than a horse head under the sheets-it functions as an alternative to the state, providing its own social and political justice. Combining a nuanced history with a unique counternarrative concerning stereotypes of the immigrant, Salvatore Lupo, a leading historian of modern Italy and a major authority on its criminal history, has written the definitive account of the Sicilian Mafia from 1860 to the present. Consulting rare archival sources, he traces the web of associations, both illicit and legitimate, that have defined Cosa Nostra during its various incarnations. He focuses on several crucial periods of transition: the Italian unification of 1860 to 1861, the murder of noted politician Notarbartolo, fascist repression of the Mafia, the Allied invasion of 1943, social conflicts after each world war, and the major murders and trials of the 1980s. Lupo identifies the internal cultural codes that define the Mafia and places these codes within the context of social groups and communities. He also challenges the belief that the Mafia has grown more ruthless in recent decades. Rather than representing a shift from "honorable" crime to immoral drug trafficking and violence, Lupo argues the terroristic activities of the modern Mafia signify a new desire for visibility and a distinct break from the state. Where these pursuits will take the family adds a fascinating coda to Lupo's work.
Top Secret is definitely not the right word for the International Spy Museum--its launch in 2002 made news and it has been high-profile ever since, with attendance growing by leaps and bounds. The International Spy Museum Handbook of Practical Spying has already been declassified to the delight of those in the need-to-know. Now, following up on that success, here's an illustrated biographical who's who of spydom from biblical days to recent times. I Lie for a Living is a regular rogue's gallery of history's most accomplished intriguers and intelligence operatives, famous and infamous alike. It's amazing how colorful some of these characters are, like 16th century playwright, brawler and secret agent Christopher Marlow or Virginia Hall and Josephine Baker, femmes fatales both. Organized into ten thematic chapters, this light-hearted but clear-eyed look at lone-wolf moles, double agents, and intricate triple-crosses unmasks a wide-ranging roster from covert patriots whose unheralded heroism sometimes cost them their lives to mercenary traitors for sale to the highest bidder, like Benedict Arnold or Aldrich Ames. It's a for-your-eyes-only kind of book, so beware-if you don't watch your back it's a sure bet someone will be reading it over your shoulder.
A modern fable for children and adults: a story of one man's quest for eternal life and how finds it in the most extraordinary of ways--in the grand tradition of Saint-Exúpery's The Little Prince When we first meet 93-year-old millionaire Baron Lamberto, he has been diagnosed with 24 life-threatening ailments--one for each of the 24 banks he owns! But when he takes the advice of an Egyptian mystic and hires servants to chant his name over and over again, he seems to not only get better, but younger. Except then a terrorist group lays siege to his island villa, his team of bank managers has to be bussed in to help with the ransom negotiations, and a media spectacle breaks out . . . A hilarious and strangely moving tale that seems ripped from the headlines--although actually written during the time the Red Brigades were terrorizing Italy--Gianni Rodari's Lamberto, Lamberto, Lamberto has become one of Italy's most beloved fables. Never before translated into English, it's a reminder, as Rodari writes, that "there are things that only happen in fairytales."From the Hardcover edition.
Italy is a country of free political institutions, yet it has become a nation of servile courtesans, with Silvio Berlusconi as their prince. This is the controversial argument that Italian political philosopher and noted Machiavelli biographer Maurizio Viroli puts forward in The Liberty of Servants. Drawing upon the classical republican conception of liberty, Viroli shows that a people can be unfree even though they are not oppressed. This condition of unfreedom arises as a consequence of being subject to the arbitrary or enormous power of men like Berlusconi, who presides over Italy with his control of government and the media, immense wealth, and infamous lack of self-restraint. Challenging our most cherished notions about liberty, Viroli argues that even if a power like Berlusconi's has been established in the most legitimate manner and people are not denied their basic rights, the mere existence of such power makes those subject to it unfree. Most Italians, following the lead of their elites, lack the minimal moral qualities of free people, such as respect for the Constitution, the willingness to obey laws, and the readiness to discharge civic duties. As Viroli demonstrates, they exhibit instead the characteristics of servility, including flattery, blind devotion to powerful men, an inclination to lie, obsession with appearances, imitation, buffoonery, acquiescence, and docility. Accompanying these traits is a marked arrogance that is apparent among not only politicians but also ordinary citizens.
To many readers of The Prince, Machiavelli appears to be deeply un-Christian or even anti-Christian, a cynic who thinks rulers should use religion only to keep their subjects in check. But in Machiavelli's God, Maurizio Viroli, one of the world's leading authorities on Machiavelli, argues that Machiavelli, far from opposing Christianity, thought it was crucial to republican social and political renewal--but that first it needed to be renewed itself. And without understanding this, Viroli contends, it is impossible to comprehend Machiavelli's thought. Viroli places Machiavelli in the context of Florence's republican Christianity, which was founded on the idea that the true Christian is a citizen who serves the common good. In this tradition, God participates in human affairs, supports and rewards those who govern justly, and desires men to make the earthly city similar to the divine one. Building on this tradition, Machiavelli advocated a religion of virtue, and he believed that, without this faith, free republics could not be established, defend themselves against corruption, or survive. Viroli makes a powerful case that Machiavelli, far from being a pagan or atheist, was a prophet of a true religion of liberty, a way of moral and political living that would rediscover and pursue charity and justice.The translation of this work has been funded by SEPS - Segretariato Europeo per le Pubblicazioni Scientifiche.
I'm never coming back to my home town.A major Italian author's tale of growing up with Italy's most brutal criminal enterprise, the Camorra. This striking novella is based on first-hand research of the Camorra, an Italian organized crime network more powerful and violent than the Mafia. It's the brutal organization that was recently exposed by Roberto Saviano, both in his brilliant non-fiction account and the film adaptation. Saviano, as it turns out, first interviewed Camorra members while working as a research assistant to Nanni Balestrini, collecting the stories that would become Sandokan. Though fiction, Sandokan is horribly, devastatingly real. The narrator is a resigned victim of the Camorra. The Camorra members are his neighbors, and he presents an uncompromising description of a world under savage occupation, the true combination of backwardness, violence, and ambition that locks small-town southern Italy under the control of organized crime. It is one of the most meaningful and riveting books to have been produced by Italian literature of recent years, by one of Italy's most significant authors.The Contemporary Art of the Novella series is designed to highlight work by major authors from around the world. In most instances, as with Imre Kertész, it showcases work never before published; in others, books are reprised that should never have gone out of print. It is intended that the series feature many well-known authors and some exciting new discoveries. And as with the original series, The Art of the Novella, each book is a beautifully packaged and inexpensive volume meant to celebrate the form and its practitioners.
The provocative international bestseller about two young girls growing up fast in a failing industrial town on the coast of Italy They were always a pair: daring, intelligent Anna and breathtakingly gorgeous Francesca. Just shy of fourteen, their newly acquired curves and skimpy bathing suits have earned them celebrity status on the beaches of their gritty town, where the glittering resort island of Elba taunts them from across the bay. The girls, aware of their newfound power, are on the brink of everything--high school, adulthood, ambition--but when their intense friendship suffers a blow, each sets off on her own, only to learn that the "glamorous" world of adult physicality can be at best banal and at worst dehumanizing. As their choices take them to a painful crossroads, the girls must reconnect if they have any hope of escaping their small-town destinies. Frank, sensual, and evocative of the Academy Award-winning film Cinema Paradiso and the international bestseller The Solitude of Prime Numbers, Swimming to Elba is a harrowing yet redemptive meditation on politics, family, sex, and the lasting power of friendship.
The fourth Guerrieri in the series. An investigation into the disappearance of a poor little rich girl in Southern Italy.
The lifeless body of Neapolitan singer Jerry Vialdi has been found at the Naples football stadium; another corpse, this time an unidentified woman, has been discovered in the Bentegodi Stadium in Verona. They were left with no signs of violence: the method and the madness point to a daring challenge for the police, who has no idea where to begin. All except for Superintendent Blanca Occhiuzzi: beautiful, blind from birth, forced by the dark that envelopes to perceive the world through four senses, she feels the fear in people, their guilt and their innocence.
Springtime proffers fragrant temptations to the men and women of Naples. But evil also lurks in the sweet-smelling spring air. It is one week before Easter, Naples, 1932. At the high-class brothel in the center of town known as Paradiso, Viper, the most famous prostitute of all, is found dead. Suffocated with a pillow. Her last client swears that when he left her she was alive and well. But when her next client arrived, he found her dead. Who killed her and why? Ricciardi has to untangle a complex knot of greed, frustration, jealousy and rancor in order to solve the riddle of Viper's death. As he does so, he will discover no end of conflicting emotions just beneath the surface of a city that lives on passion. De Giovanni's mysteries unfold with such sinuous ease that they seem to write themselves. They enchant, surprise; they hold readers enthralled. Commissario Ricciardi, whose dubious gift of being able to see and hear the last seconds in the lives of those who have suffered a violent death, is one of the most fascinating investigators to make his appearance in the world of international crime fiction in recent years. And in Vipers, the lustful and boisterous city of Naples has never been more seductive.
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