God's Mountain by Erri De Luca

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This is a story told by a boy in his thirteenth year, recorded in his secret diary. His life is about to change; his world, about to open.


He lives in Montedidio—God's Mountain—a cluster of alleys in the heart of Naples. He brings a paycheck home every Saturday from Mast'Errico's carpentry workshop where he sweeps the floor. He is on his way to becoming a man—his boy's voice is abandoning him. His wooden boomerang is neither toy nor tool, but something in between. Then there is Maria, the thirteen-year-old girl who lives above him and, like so many girls, is wiser than he.  She carries the burden of a secret life herself. She'll speak to him for the first time this summer. There is also his friendship with a cobbler named Rafaniello, a Jewish refugee who has escaped the horrors of the Holocaust, who has no idea how long he's been on this earth, and who is said to sprout wings for a blessed few.


It is 1963, a young man's summer of discovery. A time for a boy with innocent hands and a pure heart to look beyond the ordinary in everyday things to see the far-reaching landscape, and all of its possibilities, from a rooftop terrace on God's Mountain.



About Erri De Luca

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Erri de LucaErri de Luca was born in Naples in 1950 and lives near Rome today. He is the author of several novels, including God's Mountain and Sea of Memory.Michael F. MooreMichael F. Moore is a New York-based translator and scholar whose previous translations include God's Mountain by Erri de Luca, and The Silence of the Body by Guido Ceronetti. He is currently working on a new translation of The Betrothed by Alessandro Manzoni.
Published December 3, 2002 by Riverhead. 168 pages
Genres: Action & Adventure, Literature & Fiction. Fiction

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The boy, meanwhile, practices and practices how to throw his boomerang—without yet letting it go, since in crowded Montedidio “there’s not enough room to spit between your feet” let alone release a boomerang.

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Publishers Weekly

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The language, while simple, has surprising, fresh moments: the cobbler's cheerful stories "pump" the narrator's bones "full of air."

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