Fabio Bartolomei

Alfa Romeo 1300 and Other Miracles

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A raucous debut novel of organized—and unorganized—crime. “A story that takes itself unseriously enough to be funny” (The Daily Beast, “This Week’s Hot Reads”).
Diego is a forty-something car salesman with a talent for telling half-truths. Fausto sells watches over the phone. Claudio manages (barely) his family-owned neighborhood supermarket. The characteristic common to each of these three men is their abject mediocrity. Yet, mediocrity being the mother of outrageous invention, they embark on a project that would be too ambitious in scope for any single one of them, let alone all three together. They decide to flee the city and to open a rustic holiday farmhouse in the Italian countryside outside Naples.
Their misconceived endeavor would have been challenging enough for these three unlikely entrepreneurs, but when a local mobster arrives and demands they pay him protection money, things go from bad to worse. Now their ordinary (if wrongheaded) attempt to run a small business in an area that organized crime syndicates consider their own becomes a quixotic act of defiance.
A “miraculous” Italian comedy that will have readers laughing out loud, Alfa Romeo 1300 and Other Miracles marks Fabio Bartolomei’s vivid debut.
“An entertaining and humorous debut.” —La Repubblica
“A melancholy yet hopeful fable told with a smile.” —Internazionale
“Left the kind of smile on my face that doesn’t go unnoticed and which people often mistake for a kind of facial paralysis.” —Valentina Aversano, Setteperuno
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345 printed pages
Original publication
2012

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