Last Summer in the City
Gianfranco Calligarich, Howard Curtis
A cult classic of Italian literature, published in English for the first time, with an afterword by Andre Aciman, author of Call Me By Your Name.
‘A masterpiece’ – Le Figaro
‘Dazzling in every detail’ – Elle
In the late 1960s, Leo Gazzara leads a precarious life in Rome. He spends his time in an alcoholic haze, bouncing between hotels, bars, uninspiring jobs, romantic entanglements and the homes of his rich friends. Leo drifts, aimless and alone.
But on the evening of his thirtieth birthday, he meets Arianna. All night they drive the city in Leo’s run-down Alfa Romeo, talking and talking. They eat brioche for breakfast, drink through the dawn, drive to the sea and back. A whirlwind beginning. What follows is the story of the year Leo fell in love and lost everything.
Intense, romantic, witty and devastating, Last Summer in the City is a forgotten classic of Italian literature which offers an intoxicating portrait of two lonely people, pushing and pulling each other away and back again.
‘The most beautiful love story of the year’ – Il Giornale
The true quality of this novel is the way it enlightens, with a desperate clearness, a relationship between a man and a city, that is, between crowd and loneliness -- Natalia Ginzburg The most beautiful love story of the year * Il Giornale * A masterpiece * Le Figaro * Dazzling in every detail * Elle * [A] sublime text, of extraordinary languid beauty and sadness * Sud Ouest * Calligarich's time capsule of love and existential drift in a lost Rome, translated into sparkling prose by Curtis, is ripe for a rediscovery * New York Times Book Review * A sad, seductive declaration of love for Rome * Il Messaggero * A short, gorgeous, moving and magnificent story of love and solitude -- Il Sole 24 Ore This book, at once painful and ironic, remains a small gem * La Repubblica * A heartrending marvel * L'Echo * Charming, decadent, and emotionally ruthless . . . equal parts Fitzgerald and Antonioni . . . It's wonderful to have this devastating gem at large in the world again -- Andrew Martin, author of Cool for America Deeply haunting . . . A marvel of a novel * Booklist * Calligarich's rendering turns la dolce vita into something more akin to Camus's L'Etranger in a contemporary-ish urban setting. Out of print for years, this welcome new translation is elegiac and heart-rending * Vogue, Best Books to Read This Summer 2021 * The account of a lost generation in Rome in the early 1970s (possibly the children of the children of Hemingway's lost generation) carries the weight of both family history and generational saga * Kirkus * Evocative . . . Calligarich conjures Italy's piazzas, parties, beaches, and bars with a mood reminiscent of A Movable Feast . . . the feeling that Leo is alone in the world is poignantly conveyed * Publishers Weekly *
Book experts at your service
What are you looking for?