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Between Two Seas [Paperback]

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Item description for Between Two Seas by Antony Shugaar Carmine Abate...

The US debut of one of Italy's great contemporary storytellers: The photographer Hans Heumann travels to southern Italy in search of the light that has long attracted artists. There he meets Giorgio Bellusci, who dreams of rebuilding the south's most famous inn. The dark secret behind Giorgio's obsession will change the course of both men's lives.

The first of Carmine Abate's novels to appear in English and winner of the Fenice-Europa Prize for fiction, this is a touching journey that takes readers to the storied heart of Italy and accompanies them on an exploration into the meaning of memory.

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Item Specifications...

Pages   196
Est. Packaging Dimensions:   Length: 8.11" Width: 5.28" Height: 0.87"
Weight:   0.57 lbs.
Binding  Softcover
Release Date   Jan 1, 2008
Publisher   Europa Editions
ISBN  1933372400  
ISBN13  9781933372402  

Availability  0 units.

More About Antony Shugaar Carmine Abate

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Product Categories

1Books > Subjects > Literature & Fiction > General > Contemporary
2Books > Subjects > Literature & Fiction > General > Literary
3Books > Subjects > Literature & Fiction > General
4Books > Subjects > Mystery & Thrillers > General
5Books > Subjects > Mystery & Thrillers > Mystery > General

Reviews - What do customers think about Between Two Seas?

"What a rich mess my chromosomes turned out to be, what a heady mix of toxic blood was running through my veins!"  Feb 20, 2008
Florian Heumann, the young narrator of this intense and moving study of families and their memories, has just arrived with his family from Hamburg, where he lives, to visit his mother's ancestral home in southern Italy for a family vacation. His grandfather, Giorgio Bellusci, is absent, but no one will tell him where his grandfather is. All we learn is that his grandfather has been a friend of Hans Heumann, Florian's other grandfather.

Gradually, through flashbacks, the family history unfolds, following numerous generations, all memorably depicted, and their lives in Roccalba, a town in the "toe of Italy" located between the Tyrrhenian and Ionian Seas. Just as the Calabrian peninsula separates the two seas, it also separates the life forces which drive the novel--the sense of romanticism vs. hard-nosed reality, the generosity and love for others vs. long-time vendettas, and the drive to fulfill one's dreams vs. the loss of one's dreams due to outside forces.

Three generations of Belluscis form the novel's backbone. In 1835, an early Giorgio Bellusci entertained Alexandre Dumas at the family's inn, the Fondaco del Fico. The journal, which Dumas left behind, and a sketch made by Jadin, the artist who accompanied him, are now Bellusci family icons. Florian's grandfather, also named Giorgio, was a young man in the 1950s when he became guide for a traveling photographer, Hans Heumann, who eventually became world famous.

Florian, the narrator, is the grandson of both Hans Heumann and Giorgio Bellusci, and he brings the story of the inn and its history to life, uniting all the generations of the past. The Fondaco del Fico was destroyed in a fire during the time of Florian's grandfather, and it has remained a pile of rubble, taunting Giorgio to rebuild. This becomes an obsession after Giorgio returns from his "absence"--not just because of the inn's family importance, but because it also symbolizes Giorgio's determination that his family will never be conquered by outside forces. Ironies underlie the conflicts which arise throughout the novel, providing surprises, shocks, and unexpected twists from beginning to end.

Abate, a great story-teller, creates lively atmospheres and family dynamics. His characters are sensitively developed, and as the narrative flips back and forth in time, the reader becomes involved in an intense family saga concisely rendered in only two hundred pages. Intimate and personal, this ironic novel yet reveals broad themes contrasting the Bellusci family and their values with the people and values of those around them. Violent and tender, cruel and sensitive, thoughtful and instinctive, magical and brutal, the novel reproduces the ancient rhythms of a small Italian town in a remote area populated by people who live by tradition and family values. n Mary Whipple

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