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Famiglia: Moracee. Genere: Ficus. Specie: Ficus carica. È un albero di media grandezza, con corteccia liscia, cenerina, rami un po’ tortuosi, foglie ampie, palmatolobate, scabre. È coltivato nel Mediterraneo in molte varietà.
It happens every summer, at the end of June, the beginning of the season of the bottafichi, the first figs. The most beautiful season of the year, an explosion of flavours, scents and warmth. The "bottafichi" are almost an obsession for Carminù, who, every morning after school, battles against those strunze delle grisce – the damned jays - to win the best fruits. Alongside him are Mario and Vittorio, his inseparable childhood friends. They are united by the kind of pure bond that comes from running around the countryside stealing fruit and eggs, football games, and shared secrets. They are comrades, swapping red carnations with each other as a sign of eternal friendship.
A happy and carefree summer seems to be awaiting Carminù, but at night, he is tormented by a nightmare. It is a nightmare that he truly experienced years before, when his father left for Germany, and one that he doesn't want to repeat. At that time, Carminù began to visit ninety-year-old nuni (grandpa) Argentì (who had returned to Spillace after a lifetime as an emigrant. This lonely man, steeped in wistfulness and wisdom, will hand Carminù the keys to deciphering a world that, at that age, is becoming increasingly confusing, and will tell him why the much-loved fig tree is the tree of fortune.
In a bittersweet Calabria – amongst the pasta al forno and his beloved mother's meatballs, Rosalba's blonde hair, and the endless admiration of a father with whom he shares the same eyes, "so deep that they could swallow up the world" - Carminù is preparing to face the great trials that will see him come of age.
Carmine Abate was born in 1954 in Carfizzi, an arbëreshë town in Calabria. As a young man, he emigrated to Hamburg, and today lives in Trentino. He made his debut as a storyteller in Germany with Den Koffer und weg! (1984) and in Italy with Il ballo tondo (1991), followed by collections of successful short stories and novels. With La collina del vento (Mondadori 2012) he won the 50th Premio Campiello. His books, winners of prestigious awards, have been translated into several languages. His most recent novel is Le rughe del sorriso (Mondadori 2018).
Release date: 2019
Dimensions: cm 14 x 19