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He came into the world in 1933, into a small backwater. On a farmstead in the Partôr region that belonged to his mother and mother's father, the Bundëjs - Bondesio, in Italian. He was born the night of San Lorenzo, just as a star streaked across the sky. Bjula is the last of the Bundëjs, the seventh of seven siblings. By the time he was fifteen, he was already six feet tall, long and lithe, like a birch tree.
He set out from that land and travelled the world in search of the brightest future. He moved from job to job and city to city, he crossed distant lands in search of his roots, he drank, loved, lived a thousand lives that were not his own - or perhaps they were. He became others of himself, others that travelled the world. From Venice to Saint Petersburg, from Montréal to the French Riviera, in the theatre and across the Trans-Siberian Railway. Together with Brodsky and Don Quixote.
A story that spans a century, following the trail of the birch trees, intertwining many lives. In the end, everyone returns home together. The reader also returns there, along with those who wrote the story of Bjula and Lerbie Kane, Blanche and Matilde, Meku and Unurin. Their story, after all, is his story. It could yours, too.
Gian Luca Favetto is a writer, journalist and playwright. His most recent books include: Italia provincia del Giro e La vita non fa rumore (Mondadori), Se dico radici dico storie (Laterza), Il viaggio della parola (Interlinea), Premessa per un addio e Qualcosa che s’impara (NN Editore), Si chiama Andrea (66thand2nd) and Attraverso persone e cose. Il racconto della poesia (Add).
Release date: 2021
Dimensions: cm 14 x 19