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  • 08 January 2021 The five corners of Palermo “It seemed incredible that that little nocturnal paradise could be in the same city, in the same country, in the same hemisphere as the place where a group ... +
  • 08 January 2021

    The five corners of Palermo

    “It seemed incredible that that little nocturnal paradise could be in the same city, in the same country, in the same hemisphere as the place where a group of killers had pressed a remote control twelve hours earlier, destroying men, things, and hopes.” Palermo, July 1983. The moon, the lapping of water, a stunning girl to discover, and the beginning of a story of intense feelings and passions. Palermo during the years of the mafia wars, a slaughterhouse city with a thousand dead. Palermo, where people desperately crave love so as not to succumb to the violence and mourning. There is all of this, and much more, in the pages of I cinque canti di Palermo by Giuseppe Di Piazza, published by HarperCollins. This is an extensive and much more mature rewriting of the first book by a talented author, a journalist with L’Ora in those awful, bitter-sweet days, and later with Il Messaggero and the Corriere della Sera. The protagonist is Leo Solinas, a restless but enterprising reporter, and a sort of alter ego of the author as a young man. And the stories he comes across, exposes and narrates are those of tragic but obstinate love affairs (between a boy from a mafia family who refuses to become a killer, and a girl from a middle-class family who is prepared to pay the price of terrible pain), of lives devastated by heroin, of “honest thieves” and of a serious, respectable doctor murdered by the mafia and defamed, for whom the truth would wait for almost thirty years before being uncovered. With Palermo always in the background, a city that causes so much pain but that is impossible not to love, even only in its absence and recollections.   I cinque canti di Palermo. Le prime indagini di Leo Salinas Giuseppe Di Piazza HarperCollins, 2020

    The five corners of Palermo