The Way Back by Enrico Palandri
(Masks)

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Synopsis

'In Bologna I got out of the train with my suitcase, convinced I had to change trains, I went to the bar and when I heard the departure announced ran back to the platform in time only to see the last coach with its fine sign Rome whiz past under my nose and to watch the bits of paper pirouetting on the rails in the draught. The next fast train is in an hour. I sat in the waiting-room; in front of me I have the memorial tablet for the massacre of the second of August nineteen eighty, I read the names of the dead, then an article I found in the train and meantime look at the people in the room. I think of someone who on that second of August had missed a connection, maybe someone like me...'. The Way Back is a novel of exile and return. It is the story of Davide, an Italian psychiatrist, and his Scottish wife, Julia, a singer. Travelling back in Rome from London, Davide sees before him memories of his generation: his childhood and family, political dissent and terrorism, elected exile and yearning for his native land. The peculiar prerogative of the emigre is seen to be an absolute clarity of mind where self and country are concerned. Beautifully written and hauntingly moving, The Way Back is among the most impressive Italian novels of the past few years.
 

About Enrico Palandri

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Published April 1, 2000 by Serpent's Tail. 176 pages
Genres: Education & Reference, Literature & Fiction. Fiction

Unrated Critic Reviews for The Way Back

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The dinner-table conversation opens the floodgates of nostalgia for Davide -- a nostalgia that in England he tries to suppress.

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Publishers Weekly

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Italian novelist Palandri ( Ages Apart ) rambles evocatively in a memory piece loosely structured around a train trip. Davide, a psychiatrist whose Jewish mother immigrated to Italy from Poland, trave

Apr 04 1994 | Read Full Review of The Way Back (Masks)

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