Those who have an interest in psychology - we who are obsessed with why people do the things they do, all the inner workings of humans - will find much to like here. Virtually all of this book happens inside someone's head (mostly Alice and Mattia, but we do get a glimpse of parents and other characters). The tiny instances that become founding principles in a person's actions; the thoughtless word or action that ruins a relationship - these things are laid bare in the lives of two children as they grow to adulthood. I completely forgot that the story was set in Italy until more than halfway through the book. Maybe that's an artifact of the translation, but I don't believe so. There is little exterior detail and an abundance of interior landscape to be explored.
It took me until the third chapter to really warm up to this book. Not because the writing isn't great, or the characters...
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No Man's Land
by Simon Tolkien
Inspired by the experiences of his grandfather, J. R. R. Tolkien, during World War I.
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