Talking Location With .. Venetia Welby – OKINAWA
GIVEAWAY – it’s all about VENICE
19th September 2021
Giveaway – it’s all about VENICE, 3 beautiful titles to transport you. Will you be taking a trip to the Lagoon City in the foreseeable future? You need these books to really get you in the mood! Or have you been and want to revisit your experiences through the written word?
UK entry only. The winner secures all 3 books.
In Venice, Frances Croy is working to leave the previous year behind: another novel published to little success, a scathing review she can’t quite manage to forget, and, most of all, the real reason behind her self-imposed exile from London: the incident at the Savoy.
Sequestered within an aging palazzo, Frankie finds comfort in the emptiness of Venice in winter, in the absence of others. Desperate to rediscover the success of her first novel, the one by which all her other work has been judged, she attempts to return to the page – ignoring the strained relationship with her best friend, the increasing phone calls from her editor, demanding the final book of her contract, and the growing fear that the end of her career is imminent.
And then Gilly appears.
A young woman claiming a connection from back home, one that Frankie can’t quite seem to recall, Gilly seems determined for the two women to become fast friends. Frankie finds herself equally irritated and amused by the strange young woman before her – but there’s something about her that continues to give Frankie pause, that makes her wonder just how much of what Gilly tells her is actually the truth.
Those around Frankie are quick to dismiss her concerns, citing her recent fragile state and what took place that night at the Savoy. So too do they dismiss Frankie’s claims that someone is occupying the other half of the palazzo, which has supposedly stood empty since after the war. But Frankie has caught Gilly in numerous lies, has seen the lights across the way, has heard the footsteps too-and what’s more, knows she isn’t mad.
Set in the days before and after the 1966 flood – the worst ever experienced by the city of Venice – the trajectory of the disaster that forever altered the city mirrors Frankie’s own inner turmoil as she struggles to make sense of what is and is not the truth, ultimately culminating in a tragedy that leaves her questioning her own role and responsibility – as well as her sanity.
With this treasury of his time spent in Venice over a period of fifty-five years, Nooteboom makes himself the indispensable companion for all lovers of “the sailing, amphibious city”, and for every new visitor.
Because he is a master storyteller with an inexhaustible curiosity, and always with a suitcase of books (to which new discoveries are added), he brings vividly and poetically to life not only the tumultuous history of the Republic but along the way its doges, its villains, its heroes, its magnificent painters, its architects, its scholars, its skies, its canals and piazzas and alleyways, and on his expeditions its “bronze voices of time”.
Those who know and love this city and its literature will recognise Nooteboom – in Laura Watkinson’s fine translation – as the dazzling heir and companion to Montaigne, Thomas Mann, Rilke, Ruskin, Proust, Brodsky, and Donna Leon. His homage to Venice is a generous introduction, learned and enchanting, and worthy of its magnificent subject.
With its gondola-filled canals and beautiful architecture, the floating city of Venice is unlike anywhere else in the world. It is a city where apparent opposites intersect; at once aquatic and terrestrial, past and present, east and west, spiritual and carnal, imaginary and real. It is this mystery and mulitplicity that has long offered inspiration to writers and storytellers; from Thomas Mann and Proust, to Elizabeth Wharton and TS Eliot. In his 1882 essay ‘Venice’, Henry James famously wrote that there was nothing new to be said about Venice. The short stories gathered in this anthology each written by writters based in or from the city challenge this notion, offering new perspectives on one of the world s most coveted destinations. Translated by Orsola Casagrande and Caterina Dell’Olivo.
HOW TO ENTER:
You need to be a member of TripFiction. Simply go to www.tripfiction.com and scroll down to the JOIN NOW tab. And we do check!
Then, tell us in the COMMENTS below, let’s chat about Venice! What comes to mind when you think of the city? Do you have any top tips that you would like to share with our readers? Have you been?
Enter by midnight, 2 October 2021 and the winner will be chosen at random. UK only
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