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book review: trick, by domenico starnone

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book review: trick, by domenico starnone

for those of us who have left the places of our youth, any return to those rooms we once occupied, those halls we once traversed, can be freighted with emotion. the ghosts of our past life crouch there, and sometimes we want to leave them undisturbed, for they can force a reckoning with what we were and what we have become.(europa)a reckoning is certainly what awaits daniele mallarico, the aging illustrator at the center of domenico starnone’s superb italian novel, “trick, ” now available in an english translation by jhumpa lahiri. in this layered, alternately witty and melancholy story, mallarico sees shadowy apparitions everywhere when he returns to his childhood home in naples. and though they do not speak (these are not ghosts that rattle chains), they nudge him to assess his lif...